Travelling from Liberia in Costa Rica to San Juan del Sur in Nicaragua is difficult enough, sometimes perfect, and always interesting. For bigger groups it’s important to plan ahead with details that the Transportation people often don’t know. Thanks to recent posts by travellers on Twitter, here’s some advice and ideas for others who might be interested in travelling from Montembello (Liberia) to San Juan del Sur with nine adults and two children. 1. Make sure that there’s enough room on the shuttle or bus, either by booking ahead or by asking. Follow up by texting or calling to reconfirm a half hour before you’d normally leave. We thought we did this but the drivers can be tricky and often don’t understand the questions. 2. If you have driving experience with an automatic and a stick, try to drive. If not, make sure your driver has plenty of experience with hills in heavy traffic. They will need to use their brakes heavily, and be on constant high alert. 3. While magic gardens might be one of the main features of Costa Rica, so are big hills. Luckily, Monteverde was a major center of modern science and education during the 1950s. As a result, most the roads are built by hand and carefully designed for any type of transportation. 4. That said, watching your driver sweat profusely and swatting at mosquitoes is not a good sign. Sweating gets heavier as you head downhill and you may want to open car windows from time to time just because the mountain air is so … mountain-y. 5. Drive slow and jarring open and close statements are rarely helpful, but drive slow and very, very carefully – the most dangerous roads are often the ones with the least traffic. 6. Remember to watch what you’re looking at because it won’t really matter anyway, and then one day you’ll look back and wish to God you had looked further off the sides of the road.

What would be the suitable means of transportation for a sizable group embarking on a journey from Liberia, to San Juan del Sur?

Options for Group Travel

For a group of your size, there are several viable options to consider:

  1. Public Bus to the Border, Then to San Juan del Sur: This is an economical option, involving a bus ride from Liberia to Peñas To get to San Juan del Sur you can start by crossing the border at Blancas and then taking another bus or taxi. However this can take up a lot of time. May not be very convenient, for a large group especially when there are children involved.

  2. Private Shuttle Directly to San Juan del Sur: Booking a shuttle is a much more convenient and stress free choice. Sure we can arrange to pick up your group from Liberia and drive you straight to San Juan del Sur. It might cost a bit more. It provides a lot of convenience and comfort especially if you’ve just had a long flight.

  3. Splitting the Journey: One affordable option is to divide the trip into two sections; from Liberia to the border and then from the border, to San Juan del Sur. You have the option of taking a bus or a private shuttle for the initial part of your journey. You could take a taxi or another shuttle for the part of the journey starting from the border.

Considerations for Each Option

  • Time of Arrival: Considering the timing is crucial since your group is scheduled to arrive in Liberia at 3 pm. Crossing the border can take up a lot of time. Its not recommended to do so once the sun sets, especially when you have children with you.

  • Cost and Comfort: Although public transportation is a cost effective option a private shuttle provides greater comfort and security which is essential, for larger groups.

  • Booking in Advance: Regardless of what option you decide on it’s an idea to make sure you book your transportation ahead of time. This holds true for private shuttles, which you can easily organize with your hotel, in San Juan del Sur or local travel agencies.

What is the ideal timing, for traveling from Liberia to San Juan del Sur?

When is the best time to plan your trip, for the favorable weather conditions?

I had to figure out weather conditions from Liberia to Costa Rica, and then from Costa Rica to San Juan del Sur in Nicaragua. Nicaragua lies in the middle part of the Central American Isthmus and is bounded by Costa Rica to the south and Honduras to the north. Just like the other parts of Central America, it has two principal seasons: dry and wet. Each has its ups and downs, which is determined by climate data along the route.
Using the data available to me, the dry season (mid-December to April) is clear and dry with very little rain (20-50 millimeters of rain), and with predictable weather conditions. It is the best period of the year for trips for any traveller who wants to have smooth road and cross-border experiences. It also offers a good environment for sightseeing during this time.

On the flip side, the rainy season (typically from May to November), poses some challenges to travelers. Heavy rains can lead to difficult road conditions and potential delays, as well as less predictable travel times – especially in rural areas or near the border. That said, the rainy season also yields lush, green landscapes and fewer tourists, which many travelers find to be a bonus.

Tips, for Organizing Your Schedule Around Local Festivals and Holidays

Finally, don’t forget to plan your trip around local festivals and national holidays. Both Costa Rica and Nicaragua have lively cultural calendars and celebrate numerous festivals and holidays throughout the year. For example, Easter Week, or Semana Santa, is a major holiday in both countries and can be a huge travel headache with larger crowds and higher costs. If you’re not specifically interested in the religious holidays, it’s best to avoid these dates!

On the other hand, timming your visit to coincide with a cultural festival could be a great help to your traveljective. For instance, celebration of Fiesta de San Juan, taking place in Nicaragua in June would help you explore local culture to the full. Before such dates, finding accomodation and vehicles could either be difficult or costly.

All in all, to travel during the dry season is not only more comfortable weather-wise but also a better opportunity to broaden skills and immerse in the culture of new places. When considering travelling from Liberia to San Juan del Sur, you should take these aspects into account.

How can you make sure that your group has a hassle experience when crossing the border?

Preparation and Tips

  • Please make sure that all members of the group have the required visas and travel documents.
  • Currency Exchange: It’s advisable to have some local currency (Nicaraguan córdobas) for the journey after the border.
  • Stay Together: As a group it’s really important for us to stick together and watch out for one another particularly when we have children, with us.
  • Plan for Delays: When it comes to border crossings it’s always good to be prepared for some unpredictability. It might be an idea to allocate some extra time, for this particular leg of your journey.

In conclusion; Planning the trip from Liberia to San Juan del Sur, for your group

Considering your group’s size and the time left until you arrive in Liberia, the best and most comfortable (if costly) option looks like booking a private shuttle the all way from Liberia to San Juan del Sur. Even though it’s more expensive than the public bus, you will have the ease, comfort and security that such a long journey requires, especially for a group with children. You might opt to stay overnight in Liberia and leave early the next morning to make sure for a safe trip.

To help ensure your group journey goes smoothly, schedule it in advance by booking, preparing for the border crossing, and travel only in daylight hours.


What is the effective way to organize transportation for a large group from Liberia, to San Juan del Sur?

Arranging transportation for a large group from Liberia to San Juan del Sur involves plenty of questions: How much comfort are you willing to sacrifice for cost and convenience? And when you’re talking about 11 people, those questions are hyper-relevant. In our case, a private shuttle was the most cost-effective way to get our group from Liberia to San Juan del Sur.You can book a private shuttle through any number of Costa Rican travel agencies or by asking your San Juan del Sur hotel for a recommendation. Picking 11 people from Liberia and taking them straight to their destination is a far cry from lugging around a couple of tourists on public transportation.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of using transportation, for this specific route?

Using transportation can be a more cost effective choice although it may not be as comfortable especially when traveling with a large group or children. The journey involves a bus ride from Liberia to Peñas To get to San Juan del Sur you can start by crossing the border at Blancas. After that you can take a bus or taxi to reach your destination. Although it is a budget option dealing with luggage and children can be quite time consuming and difficult especially, after a prolonged flight.

What is the ideal location for us to stay if we choose to divide our journey?

If you decide to split the journey and rest overnight in Liberia, there are exciting options for your lodging. If you rest in Liberia, you can completely forget your flight and get rested from the first part of your trip for the second, exciting part. You can search and reserve hotels and guesthouses in advance, to make sure they will be available and appropriate for your group.

When Is the Ideal Time to Cross the Border?

You should cross the border in daylight. Crossing the border tends to take a lot of time, and is thus easier and generally safer in the daytime. If you arrive in Liberia in the late afternoon, it is best to spend the night there and cross the border early the next morning.

How Should We Prepare for the Border Crossing?

When getting ready to cross the border it’s important to make sure that all travelers have the documents, such, as passports and visas if needed. Having some local currency (Nicaraguan córdobas) is also advisable for expenses after crossing the border. It’s important to stick as a group especially if you have children and be prepared for possible delays when crossing the border.

A Complete Guide for Groups; Navigating Your Journey, from Liberia, Costa Rica to San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

4 thoughts on “A Complete Guide for Groups; Navigating Your Journey, from Liberia, Costa Rica to San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

  • 11 January 2024 at 14:59

    Private shuttle sounds good.

  • 12 January 2024 at 21:05

    Just got back from Liberia to San Juan del Sur with a big crew. The journey had its twists, but this guide helped tons. Check it for solid tips, especially for a squad of nine adults and two kiddos!

  • 18 January 2024 at 05:44

    Did that trip from Liberia to San Juan del Sur with nine adults and two kids. Had its ups and downs, but this guide really helped. Check it out for some solid tips.


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