Driving at night - Liberia to Canas
Replies: 30 - Last Post: Feb 8, 2013 6:54 AM Last Post By: wiremu
Jan 30, 2013 8:31 AM
Driving at night - Liberia to CanasI keep reading that driving at night is a bad idea - I'm guessing a lot of this is because of road conditions? Or is it a safety issue? We arrive at the Liberia airport at 9:30pm and wanted to drive to Canas to stay the night (before heading onto La Fortuna the next morning). We have a hotel reservation in Canas and have told them we expect to arrive between 11:30 - midnight.
Any feedback on this plan? Bad idea or should that short trip be ok at night? My husband and I will be traveling (early 30's) - we are used to driving on dirt/4 wheel only roads. Will be renting 4 wheel drive car. Safety is our biggest concern....
Thank you for your response!
Jan 30, 2013 9:50 AM
1I would hunker down in Liberia. The reason being as roads are not well marked, or lit, and people, children, cargo trucks you name it, are in the road, though it is late, the Pan Am Hwy is also a place that is nerve racking for most in daylight, driving at night in CR, after a long flight in unfamiliar roads and areas is not easy nor a good idea. The next morning it will be so much more enjoyable, easy and stress fee, arriving at 930, clearing Immigration then getting car, then driving, ughhh..
Though this is a rather easy jaunt, if it was to Tamarindo or Coco I would say not as big a deal, the Pan Am, is another story...
All roads in CR are surfaced & paved overall, thats not the issue, though Pot Holes as big as bathtubs car a issue.
Why get into to somewhere so late anyway, no food, nothing...even Liberia will be a challenge to eat after 10pm...
Jan 30, 2013 12:20 PM
Jan 30, 2013 12:51 PM
Jan 30, 2013 3:41 PM
4the highways from the airport in liberia to canas are actually quite good with few potholes, if any.
at that time of night, you will not meet the usual pedestrians and folks on bicycles as well as delivery trucks, etc. the biggest danger will be from drunk drivers. (like most places that time of night.)
it will be easier to stay near liberia and head out in the morning. you will be about 3 hours from the arenal area so getting to canas will put you only about an hour closer.
there is lodging of all types and prices in and around liberia, including close to the airport. the airport is about 20 minutes from the center of liberia. One of my favorite places to stay is the best western las espuelas. a very comfortable, costa rican style hotel with a pool and a small restaurant for a good breakfast, which is included. it is around $50 a night. it is located on rt 1 a little bit south of liberia so you will have a good start in the morning for the rest of your trip. there are fast food places that will be open that time of night and possibly some other places to eat.
if you decide to drive, just slow down and be extra cautious of the traffic coming towards you and around you. there shouldn't be much traffic that time of night -- just beware of drunk drivers.
there is road construction between liberia and canas but that shouldn't affect you at night. there are no detours or anything -- they are adding more lanes to the highway so just nothing is different about the highway.
Jan 30, 2013 4:20 PM
Jan 30, 2013 4:57 PM
6it's not necessarily a "bad idea." i just drove this route 3 days ago and it's fine. there are fewer vehicles on the road that time of night and no pedestrians, school buses, delivery trucks or bicycles.
i think it would be easier just to stay in liberia -- but if they want to go to canas, it's not really a big deal.
Jan 30, 2013 5:21 PM
Jan 30, 2013 7:53 PM
8well, we will just have to agree to disagree.
i live in costa rica and i do drive at night and i'm very familiar with the highway from canas to liberia and to the airport. i travel it frequently. so we just have a difference of opinion. a good discussion though and bigsky can make up his own mind.
Jan 31, 2013 8:20 AM
9I live in El Salvador & also drive at night, that doesn't mean that I would be so callous as to recommend someone, not familiar with the area do the same.
Jan 31, 2013 8:34 AM
10the difference is, rayitoG -- i actually LIVE in costa rica and travel frequently to the area the op is asking about. i am VERY familiar with the highway from the airport to liberia and the highway from liberia to canas. there are no curvy, mountain roads, no evening fog, no big drop-offs, etc. the area is all flat. i would never recommend night driving in some areas, but for this one, i repeat: no big deal.
different people have different levels of driving skills and coping skills. so we should just leave it up to the op to decide. if they are willing to slow down and be watchful, it shouldn't be a problem.
Jan 31, 2013 11:25 AM
11Well " actually live in El Salvador, am very familiar with the road to Compalapa airport", which is similar to the one you describe.
I would NEVER be so presumptuous as recommend a gringo visitor to drive it or any other road anywhere in CA after dark, especially approaching midnight in a rental car for reasons apparent to any person that has spent any time here, let alone in CR!
Jan 31, 2013 5:18 PM
12well, i would suggest that you stick to what you know and i will not comment about driving in el salvador.
if you read what i wrote originally, you will see that i recommended staying in the liberia area and even recommended a place to stay.
but if they really want to drive at that time of night, it's their business and NOT A BIG DEAL.
me? i don't personally care for the idea of getting off a long flight and driving for an hour in the middle of the night - but it's their vacation and their choice. after all, it's only an hour and an easy drive.
Feb 1, 2013 8:02 AM
Feb 1, 2013 8:41 AM
14I driven that road both ways day and night and being from Ca. didn't find it a big deal! That said I would stay in Liberia for the night at the Best Western for you won't find as nice of a hotel in Canas.
Los Yoses & San PedroBook now
(0 star Hotel)
From US$11.00 per night
(3 star Hotel)
From US$153.93 per night
(2 star Hotel)
From US$50.17 per night