La Fortuna to Puerto Viejo

Thanks to traveller named Bob for this advice:

Option 1 is to do a 2 bus trip by going from La Fortuna directly to San José and from there on to Puerto Viejo, but we were told there is not much time in San José, and as you can read on this page the second bus does regularly sell out. So for us this sounded a bit risky, so this is what we did:

Option 2 is to take the bus from La Fortuna to Quesada (via El Tanque, this should be the fastest), check the La Fortuna page for a photo of the schedule. We took it at 8:00am and arrived at 9:20 in Quesada. It costs 2800C.

Next bus is Quesada – San José, 10:00 – 13:05 for 1800C. The boletería in Quesada opened around 9:45 (so 15 mins before the bus left), and there was already a queue before that time. Join it while your waiting anyway!

In San José you have to switch to the MEPE terminal, which is a less than 5 minute walk.
Our last bus was as described in this page (Thanks!): San José – Puerto Viejo, 14:00 – 18:45 for 5590C. There was a bathroom/snack stop of 10-15 minutes at the bus terminal of Limon around 17:15.

For the early risers: we got advised option 2, but starting at 6am. This should allow you to catch the 12:00 bus in San José and reach Puerto Viejo in daylight.

10 travel tips for La Fortuna to Puerto Viejo - share your tips below!

  1. Lejla

    We did this for our trip from La Fortuna to Puerto Viejo (we aren’t early birds):

    – Bus from La Fortuna to San Ramon at 9 am (approx. 2.5h for 2300 CRC/person).
    – Bus from San Ramon to San Jose at 12 am (approx. 1h, can’t remember the price).
    – We grabbed a taxi (2000 CRC) to Terminal Atlantic Norte (from this terminal all buses to the caribbean side of Costa Rica depart): the terminal where we arrived did not have any buses going to Puerto Viejo.
    – Bus from San Jose to Puerto Viejo at 2 pm (approx. 4.5h for 6000 CRC or 10.7 USD/person). There is a small diner/restaurant next to the station where you can buy food and drinks. 😊
    – Arrived at Puerto Viejo at 6:30 pm, we had a 10min break in Puerto Limon.

    In general, the employees at the terminals were really helpful and we had a smooth ride.
    Hope this helps anyone. 😊

  2. Delphine.

    Some updated information as of April 2019. For option 1 the only bus going to San Jose is at 2PM now.

    Option 3
    La fortuna – San Ramón C2300(price) @5:30 AM (2,5hrs)
    San Ramón – San José C1490 @8:00AM (1:45hr). You need to change terminal 5min walk
    San José (You need to change to Mepe terminal) – Puerto Viejo de limon C5960 @10 AM or 12PM +/- 5hrs)

  3. Jimmy

    I took option 1 and it worked out fine.
    The bus left Fortun at 9:10 and arrived around 13:00 in San José. Then just a 5 minute walk to the MEPE bis station to catch the 14:00 bus to Cahuita. The bus were pretty full, so it would be possible that it sells out sometimes. This was a monday at the end of may.

  4. Jimmy

    Where canI find the timetable for Quedada to San José? Cant find it anywhere.

    • centrocoasting

      Sorry, Jimmy, I dont have a recent copy of a Quesada timetable

        • Rene

          Dear Kristin,
          THANK YOU SO MUCH for this great tip!
          I did it today, it was gorgeous and the only reasonable method to got from La Fortuna to Puerto Viejo! 😉

        • Udi

          Thank you for the recommendation. Came up on it by chance, looking for transit from Puerto viejo to la fortuna, and came out with an amazing experience, which, if you include the breakfast and lunch in the price, was quite cheap.

  5. Tracey

    I did the Rio Pacuare rafting shuttle trip from La Fortuna to Puerto Viejo. If you have the time and money this makes for a fantastic day.

    • centrocoasting

      Wow, that sounds pretty cool! Do you have any more details to share? Company, price, time, etc ?

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