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All international flights go through San Jose, Costa Rica's capital city, so unless you can make a same-day connection to or from Puerto Jimenez, you will spend your first, and possibly your last, nights there. (If you want to avoid a night in San Jose, look for flights that arrive in the early morning, in time to catch the flight to Puerto Jimenez. When departing Costa Rica, try for flights departing San Jose in the afternoon, which will give you time to connect from Puerto Jimenez). Most major airlines fly to San Jose, including Continental, United, American, Frontier and Lacsa/Grupo Taca (the national airline of Costa Rica).
You need a U.S. passport to travel to Costa Rica (no visa required). Be sure it is valid at least 6 months AFTER your return or they will not allow you to travel to Costa Rica! You can call the Costa Rican Consulate at (202) 328-6628 from 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM, EST with any official questions. You can also try the Costa Rican Tourist Board at 800-343-6332, www.costarica.com , although the Consulate has the final word.
Places to stay in San Jose:
If you need a place to stay in the San Jose area let us know. We are happy to recommend a Costa Rican style hotel that is well-run, clean, charming and reasonably priced.
To Puerto Jimenez BY AIR:
The nearest town to our property (35-45 minutes) is Puerto Jimenez, gateway to the Osa. This is where flights from San Jose land, and where you buy groceries. Puerto Jimenez has several restaurants, a post office, Internet cafes, a 24-hour clinic, a pharmacy, two banks and other amenities we don't have out at Matapalo, where the houses are.
There is daily air service between San Jose and Puerto Jimenez on both Nature Air www.natureair.com , and Sansa Airlines www.flysansa.com . Sansa leaves from the Sansa terminal at the Juan Santamaria International Airport (about 35 minutes from downtown San Jose) where the international flights land. Nature Air leaves from a terminal near the International Airport AND from Tobias Bolanos Airport (about 20 minutes from downtown San Jose). Advance reservations are a must, as these flights often fill up. We recommend calling them for the most accurate and current information.
On your flight to Puerto Jimenez, which takes about 50 minutes, you will see spectacular views of the countryside and shoreline. For the clearest flying weather, we recommend morning flights.
When you leave the country you are required to pay an exit tax of $26 at the airport, in dollars, colones or with a credit card (or a combination). This is a good time to unload any unwanted colones.
There are rental cars available in Puerto Jimenez and we can arrange this for you, or a car originating in San Jose or elsewhere if you want to drive down. However, a car is not essential once you're at the beach. Taxis are readily available and much is within walking distance.
To Puerto Jimenez by RENTAL CAR:
Driving is a way to see this beautiful country and we provide you with detailed directions from San Jose to our door upon request. It takes about 6.5 hours from San Jose to Puerto Jimenez. We strongly recommend a 4-wheel drive vehicle, especially during the green season. We do NOT recommend driving at night!
To Puerto Jimenez by VAN SERVICE:
To Puerto Jimenez by BUS:
We can arrange private transportation from San Jose to Puerto Jimenez, as well as between other Costa Rica destinations, in an air conditioned van with an English-speaking driver.
There are two buses a day between San Jose and Puerto Jimenez. Both stop for lunch mid-route.
The bus company is Autotransportes Blanco Lobo. Phone number: 011-506-2-256-8963.
We will assist you with travel logistics as much as possible. However, we cannot be responsible for your travel arrangements or how they work out. Ultimately, you are in charge of getting yourself to the house and back and we cannot give refunds based on not showing up.
When you arrive in Puerto Jimenez
If you fly, we can arrange to have a taxi meet your plane. Once you land in Puerto Jimenez we recommend stopping at a restaurant to get your bearings, eat, use the bathroom, etc. Your taxi driver is happy to wait. He will then take you to the grocery store. (Prior to your trip we send you a grocery list of what you can expect to find). There are several in town, including two supermarkets with a lot of variety. Shopping in Costa Rica is a great cultural experience!
There are also a liquor store and two bakeries in Puerto Jimenez.
Arrival at THE HOUSE
We or our manager will come over and give you an orientation shortly after you arrive. If no one is there to meet you, we’ll leave the house unlocked, with the key in the door, and connect with you later. Go on in and make yourself at home.
Kick back, relax, explore. You made it!