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Costa Rica by shuttle bus

In 2014 we visited Middle-America and made a tour through Costa Rica by shuttle bus. This was the first time that we made a round trip by shuttle bus, instead of having our own car. The places we wished to visit where Monteverde cloud forest, Arenal volcano and Bocas Del Toro in Panama. In between we also visited Cahuita and Puerto Viejo. Those two villages along the Caribbean Coast both have their own identity. Cahuita with the laid back vibe and Puerto Viejo that is popular among surfers. Of course we also visited the capital city San Jose, the place where our trip by shuttle bus started and ended.

layover jfk

costa rica by shuttle bus

san jose sightseeing

monteverde forest

arenal tour

caribbean coast

costa rica wildlife


Costa Rica by shuttle bus itinerary

  • Day 1 to San Jose with layover at JFK
  • Day 2 San Jose – Monteverde
  • Day 3 Monteverde
  • Day 4 Monteverde – Arenal / La Fortuna
  • Day 5 Arenal / La Fortuna
  • Day 6 Arenal / La Fortuna – Cahuita
  • Day 7 Cahuita – Panama
  • Day 10 Panama – Puerto Viejo
  • Day 11 Puerto Viejo – San Jose
  • Day 12 to home with layover at Atlanta


Getting there

In 2014 we flew with Delta Airlines. Direct flights from Amsterdam to San Jose weren’t possible, so we had to choose for a layover in Panama-City, London or New York, depending on the flight operator. We chose Delta Airlines, because they were by far the cheapest with a return ticket for only €484. A week after our booking we checked the prices again and Delta raised the price for a ticket to more than €800. I guess we were just in time with booking, which was about 5 months before departure. The service was good and one of the flights even was operated by KLM, which had tickets that were much more expensive. With websites like or it is possible to find good deals for flights.


Costa Rica top 10

  • 1. Canopy Tour Monteverde
  • 2. Monteverde cloud forest
  • 3. Arenal ATV tour
  • 4. Arenal volcano hike
  • 5. Baldi Hot Springs
  • 6. Tree of Life, Cahuita
  • 7. Playa Cocles, Puerto Viejo
  • 8. La Fortuna
  • 9. National Theatre, San Jose
  • 10. Mercado Central, San Jose
monteverde sunset

Sunset at Monteverde cloud forest



The tour through Costa Rica was the first time we made a round trip in a country outside Europe. We made round trips before in Europe, but that was by motorhome or train and then you can decide what time you want to depart in the morning. Now we travelled by shuttle bus and had to be in time, sometimes very early in the morning. By that you don’t have time to rest, but despite this our time in Costa Rica was great! The country is really beautiful. We have seen a city, rain forest, National Parks, volcano and beaches. And of course beautiful animals. In between we visited Panama for a couple of days, but looking back that actually was disappointing and we should have stayed longer in Puerto Viejo to have some rest on the beach before going back to Holland.


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