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Three daily buses leave San José for Sixaola. They stop at Cahuita after a 4 hour ride. Regional buses go to Limón, Puerto Vargas, Puerto Viejo and Bribri. Buses to and from San José can be very crowded on weekends in the "dry" season.
Written Jan 8, 2010
Between Puerto Limón and Sixaola, at the border with Panama, busses operate from the company "Autotransportes Mepe". This company has one line between these two placeswith busses driving every hours to each direction, between sunrise and sunset.
Cahuita is right in the middle of this line: at about 1,5 hours from Limón and about just as long to the Panamese border. From both places the price is about 2,5 dollars for a single way ticket. These tickets are sold in a ticketoffice and printed there, but if you weren't able to get one for some reason you can also get another version in the bus: these ones are white for southbound connections and yellow for northbound connections.
On the way south from Cahuita you can easily visit some other villages. This costs close to nothing and doesn't take very long either. To Puerto Viejo -another tourism place- it is only 30 minutes and to Bribri -just another nice, quiet town- it takes an extra 30 minutes. Another half an hour further you'll end up in the village Sixaola, when you can cross the scary bridge to enter Panama.
Written May 13, 2008
When you are coming from San José and you are heading for the Caribbean Coast of Costa Rica, you will have to go to the so called "Caribbean Busstation" in the capital. From here busses depart to several destinations in the eastcoast of the country. One destination these busses will always go to is Puerto Limón. This is the biggest city in this part of the country and one of the biggest in the whole of Costa Rica.
The busride from the capital to Puerto Limón takes about 3,5 hours and costs 2080 Colones: about 4 dollars. From here you can take a connecting bus further south to the villages Cahuita, Puerto Viejo, Bribri and others. From here you can also get a bus directly to the border with Panama.
At the Caribbean busstation in San José there are also busses that cover the complete distance to Cahuita, Puerto Viejo or the border. These busses run less frequently, bus if you miss one of these busses it is always easy to get another connection once you are in Limón.
Written May 13, 2008
We found the the direct bus is better than the more expensive shuttles. They are very comfortable and have more convenient times. Station Caribe in San Jose has tons of buses going all over the Caribbean Coast . Take the direct routes for faster arrival . The terminal is much cleaner and nicer than I imagined . They have a bank and an ATM ...money available in US dollars or Colones. There are tourist police and security so...it was safe. Trip to Cahuita took less than 4 hours including a snack stop. Cost $7.00
Written Jan 26, 2007
If you are coming from San José, there is a direct bus to Cahuita that later stops in Puerto Viejo and Sixaola. Catch a bus at the Gran Terminal del Caribe in SJ on Calle Central/Avenida 15-17. Buses leave at 6:00 am, 10:00 am, 1:30 pm, and 3:30 pm and takes about 4 hours.
Let's say you are in Puerto Viejo and want to head back north to Cahuita. Catch a local bus from the bus stop in town (just east, across the street, from the bus stop you will reach when you arrive from SJ) and you will arrive in about 20-30 minutes. If you want to go to the National park and enter at Puerto Vargas, the stop is in the middle of nowhere. It is rather indistinct. Look at the photo I have here and try to familiarize yourself with it. Just look for signs advertising "Cabinas" - better yet just ask your bus driver to stop there before you depart. The stop in the town of Cahuita itself is rather straightforward if you want to stay there or head to the Kelly Creek Entrance of the park. The bus will simply pull into town and drop you off.
Written Jul 9, 2005