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Family driving from SJ to Matapalo

3 posts
Family driving from SJ to Matapalo

We are staying at Casa Bambu in Cabo Matapalo for 2 1/2 weeks in July.

We plan to rent a car and drive down. I've been reading the forums here on rental cars.

Our plan du jour is to rent from National a Toyota Prado and drive down starting in the morning.

Stop in Puerto Jimenez for gas and groceries, then head to Casa Bambu.

Thinking of taking the mountain route one way and coast route the other way.

I'd love advice....specifically:

Price for Car Rental: Seems like it will cost about $2,700 agfter all the taxes and insurances, ouch!

Surf Racks...rent? buy?

Places to see, eat, visit or stop along the way

Road conditions and length of time to drive

Once we are at Casa Bambu:

Fun places aside from Pan Dulce (which we are so looking forwrd to) for family to surf

Also suggestions on other things to do while we are there.

We speak Spanish an love hikes, nature, animals, food....

2 replies to this topic
A nice place
Level Contributor
935 posts
10 reviews
1. Re: Family driving from SJ to Matapalo

The coastal road is quicker and easier to drive. I would calculate around 7 hours for the drive. The car rental company should provide the roof racks. If not you can rent roof racks form San Jose Surfboards: www.sanjosesurfboards.com/racks/

Watch out for your car and the luggage while you travel south, whenever you stop you should park it close that you can still see it.

A nice place to have lunch would be the Marina Pez Vela in Quepos, they offer guarded parking. Or just drive off the coastal road and have lunch in a restaurant on the beach: Playa Hermosa, Dominical, ...

Once at Matapalo you should visit and hike the Corcovado National Park.

Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
4 posts
24 reviews
2. Re: Family driving from SJ to Matapalo

We have been to Casa Bambu 3 times - we love it there! The last time we drove and I would estimate it took us 6 hours total on coastal route. We expected a worse drive, to be honest, and if you have the time it is a nice way to go. We stopped along the way at Villas Alturas in Dominical and it was right about halfway and a perfect way to split up the drive - but there are lots of nice options near there.

I would suggest you have Kirk and Lyn (the owners of Bambu) arrange your rental car - they did that for us and it worked very well - even though we had severe weather conditions that required making lots of changes. We rented through Solid. We were able to request a surf rack with them for the car for no extra cost.

This was the first time we have had a car - and there is so much to see and do right at the house that you will not need to go far! Our favorite activities (outside of our most favorite which is hanging out at the house and beach!) were the Golfo Dulce boat tour and the Everuday Adventures tour of the strangler fig tree with rappelling down. Also, we hiked up the waterfall (per the info from the owners) and that was a highlight for our family. Enjoy!

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