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How to get from San Jose to Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica

Traveling from San Jose to Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, is easy, and you can choose between different transportation options. From public buses to shared shuttle vans to private transfers or even Uber.

The national park of Manuel Antonio is one of the most bio-diverse parks in the world.

So, what are you waiting for? Pack your bags and book a tour to experience the beauty of Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica!

Universal Traveller recommends the following websites to plan & book your trip

  • Get Your Guide helps you find the best tours wherever you are heading to.

Here you can find more information about Costa Rica transportation, and don’t forget to check out our detailed Costa Rica travel guide.

How far is Manuel Antonio from San Jose?

The distance from Manuel Antonio to San Jose is about 174 kilometers or 108 miles by car.

Transportation Options from San Jose to Manuel Antonio

The following table outlines all transportation options from San Jose to Manuel Antonio:

MethodTravel timePrice
Public Bus from San Jose to Manuel Antonio3 hours 30 minutesUSD 9
Shared Shuttle from San Jose to Manuel Antonio3-4 hoursUSD 62
Private Transfer from San Jose to Manuel AntonioCustom TimeUSD 195-USD 330
Taxi from San Jose to Manuel Antonio3 hours 30 minutes
Flight from San Jose to Manuel Antonio17 minutes
Rental Car3 hours 30 minutes

Getting to Manuel Antonio from San Jose

Protect your trip: With all our travel experience, we highly recommend you hit the road with travel insurance. SafetyWing offers flexible & reliable Digital Nomads Travel Medical Insurance at just a third of the price of similar competitor plans.

1. Bus from San Jose to Manuel Antonio Costa Rica

Journey Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes

If you are traveling on a shoestring getting from San Jose, Costa Rica, to Manuel Antonio by bus is the cheapest option.

Tracopa buses serve the route throughout the day from Tracopa Bus Station in San Jose.

Make sure to take a direct bus (directo) rather than a collective (collectivo).

The direct bus only takes 3.5 hours and costs around 9 USD.

The collective, however, takes at least two hours long because it stops all the time to pick up more people on the way.

San Jose to Manuel Antonio Bus Schedule

The direct Tracopa buses from San José to Manuel Antonio start at 06:00 AM, 06:45 AM, 09:00 AM, 10:30 AM, 12:00 PM, 01:15 PM, 02:30 PM, 03:30 PM, 04:45 PM, 05:00 PM, 06:00 PM and 06:30 PM.

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GuateGo

On GuateGo, you can check all available transportation options from San Jose to Manuel Antonio. It is a reliable and easy-to-use platform to compare prices & schedules and make a booking online.

San Jose To Manuel Antonio

2. Shared Van Shuttle

Journey Duration: 3-4 hours

Interbus and Grayline offer a shared shuttle bus service between San Jose and Manuel Antonio.

The air-conditioned busses have between ten to fifteen seats and an English-speaking driver.

The buses depart in the morning and the afternoon and cost around 62 USD per person, one-way.

Best Things To Do In Manuel Antonio Costa Rica2
©Universal Traveller par Tim Kroeger

3. Private Transfer from San Jose to Manuel Antonio National Park

Journey Duration: Custom Time

If you want to be more flexible regarding the departure time or traveling with a big group or your family, a private transfer from San Jose to Manuel Antonio might be the best option.

Click here to book a private transfer from San Jose Airport to Manuel Antonio.

Manuel Antonio Beach
©Universal Traveller par Tim Kroeger

4. San Jose to Manuel Antonio Flight

Journey Duration: 17 minutes

The fastest and most spectacular way to travel to Manuel Antonio is by flying from San Jose to Quepos Airport.

Quepos is a small town next to Manuel Antonio, just 7 kilometers (about four miles) away.

Flights from San Jose to Quepos start at 40 USD, and the flight time is only seventeen minutes. Seventeen minutes with breathtaking views of Costa Rica’s fantastic landscape!

GuateGo

On GuateGo, you can check all available transportation options from San Jose to Manuel Antonio. It is a reliable and easy-to-use platform to compare prices & schedules and make a booking online.

Going To Manuel Antonio?

5. Driving with Rental Car

Journey Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes

If you have your car, you can also drive to Manuel Antonio on your own. The journey takes around 3.5 hours, depending on the traffic.

From San Jose, you first have to drive to Jaco, where you will cross the famous Tarcoles River Bridge.

Underneath the bridge, you can see dozens of crocodiles. Definitely a must-stop!

Once you arrive in Jaco, it’s only an easy one-hour drive to Manuel Antonio.

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6. Uber or taxi

Journey Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes

I recommend taking an Uber instead of a taxi. It is cheaper, the cars are usually also way better, and your trip is GPS tracked.

So it’s safer, and your driver has no chance to rip you off.

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Best day tours in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica

Get Your Guide helps you find the best tours wherever you are heading to. It’s usually the first website I check when I plan a trip to a new place.

Here you can find some of the best tours in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica.

Protect your trip: With all our travel experience, we highly recommend you hit the road with travel insurance. SafetyWing offers flexible & reliable Digital Nomads Travel Medical Insurance at just a third of the price of similar competitor plans.