Tuesday, July 27, 2021

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Costa Rica

40 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Central America
January 25 to January 30, 2021

My 120th country visited on my journey beyond #lakbay100, 93rd solo backpacking trip, 10th country in North America and of course, usual budget do-it-yourself itinerary from arrival to departure. Costa Rica served also as the seventh country on my 2020-2021 America Pandemic Adventures Filipino Solo Trip, the new normal of traveling.

Costa Rica became a popular nature travel destination, and its main competitive advantage is its well-established system of national parks and protected areas, covering around 23.4% of the country's land area, the largest in the world as a percentage of the country's territory, and home to a rich variety of flora and fauna, in a country that has only 0.03% of the world's landmass, but that is estimated to contain 5% of the world's biodiversity. The country also has plenty of world renowned beaches, both in the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, within short travel distances between both coasts both by air and land, and also several active volcanoes that can be visited with safety.

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Costa Rica

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Costa Rica

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Costa Rica

timezone - UTC -0600H   capital - San Jose    language - Spanish    currency - Colon (CRC)
1. Costa Rica is home to more than 5% of the world’s biodiversity.
2. Costa Rica is 2nd largest exporter of bananas in the world, next to Ecuador.
3. Costa Rica Doesn’t Have A Military.
4. Costa Rica Means “Rich Coast”.
5. Most Of Costa Rica’s Energy Comes From Renewable Sources.


Day 30: Jan. 25, 2021 Mon / Managua to San Jose
Avianca Flight Ticket 459 USD; Sagicor Travel Insurance (5 Days) 56 USD
1725H ETD Managua UTC -600H; flight AV6643
1820H ETA San Salvador UTC -0600H; Subway $5
2105H ETD San Salvador UTC -0600H; flight 637
2220H ETA San Jose UTC -0600H; taxi $20; Hostel Shakti 5 Nights 127 USD (76,260 CRC) 
TOTAL: 25 USD + 642 USD

Day 31: Jan. 26, 2021 Tue / Turrialba
0700H Breakfast; walk to Grupo Mutual (0800H); Money Exchange 100 USD = 60,600 (606)
Walk to Turrialba Bus Station; snacks 3,275
1000H ETD San Jose; bus 1,545
1200H ETD Turrialba; bus to Sta. Cruz 800
1300H ETA Turrialba Vulcano junction; taxi 20,000; Turrialba Vulcano Viewpoint (close trail) 
1515H ETD Turrialba Vulcano; bus 1,370
1700H ETD Cartago; bus 670
1730H ETA San Jose; dinner / night snacks 7,635; Hostel Shakti CHANGE PROFILE PIC
TOTAL: 35,295 CRC

Day 32: Jan. 27, 2021 Wed / Barva
0500H ETD Hostel; walk to Heredia Terminal
0515H ETD San Jose; bus 585
0600H ETA Heredia Market; walk to Ave 4 / Calle 1
0625H ETD Heredia; bus #433 710
0700H ETA Sacramento junction bus (1,900masl); Barva Volcano Entrance (close trail) (2,618masl)
1300H ETD Sacramento; bus #433 710
1345H ETD Heredia; bus 455
1430H ETA San Jose; souvenir 2,000; snacks 8,750
Money Exchange 50 USD = 30,300 (606); Hostel Shakti; dinner 5,000
TOTAL: 18,210 CRC

Day 33: Jan. 28, 2021 Thu / Irazu
0700H 14th PCR Nasal Swab Test; Irazu Entrance Ticket reservation 17 USD
Laboratorio Clinico Carit 45,000 CRC (75 USD); Walk to Sabana Estadio for Irazu Volcano trip
0800H ETD San Jose; bus 2,600 (1,150masl)
0930H ETA Irazu Volcano (3,200masl)
1000H Irazu Reservation Ticket checked; Irazu Volcano (3,432masl) Crater walk
1230H ETD Irazu Volcano; 1,340
1330H ETA Cartago; lunch 2,200
1430H ETD Cartago; bus 660
1500H ETA San Jose; Tracopa bus return 9,965; Hostel Shakti; beer 1,000
TOTAL: 17,765 CRC + 92 USD

Day 34: Jan. 29, 2021 Fri / Manuel Antonio
0530H ETD Hostel; walk to Tracopa bus terminal
0600H ETD San Jose
0945H ETA Manuel Antonio; smoothie 1,800; Credit Card required for ticket purchased :(
Espadilla Beach chilling; lunch 7,000
1430H ETD Manuel Antonio; stopover snacks 1,100
1845H ETA San Jose; back to hostel; Hostel Shakti
TOTAL: 9,900 CRC

Day 35: Jan. 30, 2021 Sat / San Jose to Panama
0700H Breakfast; Laboratorio Clinico Carit Certificate
San Jose morning city tour; lunch 2,960; Money Exchange 10 USD = 6,180 (618)
1130H ETD San Jose; Alajuela bus 715
1215H ETA San Jose Airport; check-in 
1442H ETD San Jose UTC -0600H; flight CM0183 
1702H ETA Panama City UTC -0500H
TOTAL: 3,675 CRC 

GRAND TOTAL: 84,840 CRC (165 USD) + 734 USD

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Costa Rica

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Costa Rica

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Costa Rica


Airport Immigration Issues: one of the easiest / fastest / relax airport entry I ever had, the question raised only was what is my work and what will I do in Costa Rica. In just less than 3 minutes I have my passport already.

Places Visited: San Jose, Turrialba Volcano, Barva Volcano, Irazu Volcano, Manuel Antonio National Park 

1. Costa Rica has the highest cost of tourist living in Central America (greater than Belize). National park entrance fees are very expensive, minimum to 15 USD (no national park have free entrance or foreigner-friendly charge). 

2. Irazu Volcano (Costa Rica's highest volcano at 3,432masl) is the easiest to navigate as there is a direct transportation near the crater and almost no hiking needed. 

3. Turrialba Volcano (Costa Rica's 2nd highest volcano at 3,340masl) hiking trail is not always open to public. For transportation, either go Turrialba town or Cartago then catch a bus there going to Santa Cruz. Ask the driver to drop off to Turrialba Volcano junction. From there, take a taxi for 20,000 CRC (12km snake road) going to the park entrance.

4. Barva Volcano (Costa Rica's 3rd highest volcano at 2,906masl) hiking trail is the most challenging among these three due to 16km back trail distance and 700m altitude gain with limited bus departures. 

5. Most of the national parks require entrance ticket booking online. Some parks (like ChirripĆ³, Irazu and Poas) are on this website https://serviciosenlinea.sinac.go.cr, others have their own booking websites like the Manuel Antonio National Park (credit card required on purchase via walk-in). 

6. For planned land border trip (Ticabus), only residents and locals are allowed to enter Costa Rica via bus trip. Tourists can exit on land. 

7. On airport arrival, Costa Rica requires health pass registration via this link https://salud.go.cr/ and accredited Covid19 travel insurance per this link https://www.visitcostarica.com/en/costa-rica/statement-costa-rica-tourism-board-covid-19. No PCR Test needed. 

8. On airport departure, my next destination (Panama) require Negative PCR Test within 48 hours validity and health pass registration via this link https://viajes.panamadigital.gob.pa/. Laboratorio Clinico Carit provides Covid19 PCR Test costs 45,000 CRC (75 USD) with 24 hours result (physical passport is always required as identification). This test serves as my 14th PCR Nasal Swab Test (all negative result).

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Costa Rica

5 Days Pandemic Rainy Solo Trip in Costa Rica


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