The coastal route is easier and shorter yet not as scenic as the mountain route.
If going mountain route, short stop at the Cartago cathedral, and at the restaurant on the top of Cerro de la Muerte for hummingbirds (the name escaped me but the driver should know it). Take the route via Uvita, as continuing on PanAm Hwy is longer and not so interesting.
We did the drive in 6 and 1/2 hours with a ten minute stop halfway.The best parts of the drive scenery-wise are the first part thru the mountains, the section around Dominical and Uvita, and the last bit as you drive by Piedras Blancas National Park. It was worth it to us for at least one time tho usually we fly.
I'm curious....did you do this drive? Which way did you go and any thoughts to share?
Osalife obviously took the mountain route = PanAm Hwy 2 via Cartago and San Isidro de el General (Perez Zeledon) then down the mountain towards Dominical and left on Costanera Sur till Palmar Norte where joined the PanAm for a short time, and off towards Puerto Jimenez. Very scenic route but do start early, as in the mountains it does rain often after the noon.
Really nice ride…do it by the coast way…about 7 hours…private driver is a nice way…but I believe can be a lot more expensive than renting a car…rent a car and drop it in PJ…