GUANACASTE BEACHES / LIBERIA - FAQ

How do I get from the airport to my hotel?

Liberia Costa Rica is served by Daniel Oduber Quiros International Airport (IATA code LIR), which is located 11.5 kilometers (approximately 7.1 miles) west of downtown Liberia.

If you are continuing on to Guanacaste there are several options. You can rent a car on your arrival and drive to Guanacaste, this will also give you freedom to explore the area and various attractions, beaches, national parks, etc. Another option is to use a shared shuttle like EasyRide Costa Rica, Interbus, or Gray Line. Look at the schedules and see which one works best for you.

How do I call/hail a taxi?

Officially licensed taxis are colored red or orange; if a taxi is any other color or lacks the inverted yellow triangle on the doors, it’s a `pirate taxi` operating illegally. When boarding the taxi ask the taxi driver `Puede poner la maria, por favor?` (Could you please turn the meter on?), otherwise, you will pay a higher price. For a taxi, call Penas Blancas Shuttle Service (tel. 506-8313-1419), Costa Rica Airport Shuttle (tel. 506- 8313-1419), or Riu Palace Guanacaste Shuttle (506- 8313-1419).

Should I rent a car in Liberia?

Yes, renting a car is an excellent way to explore Liberia and see the beaches, national parks, and countryside of Costa Rica. Some of the advantages are obvious – go where you want, when you want. Make your own agenda and have more freedom.

Is Liberia a walking city?

Liberia is a great place to get around by foot. The town of Liberia is approximately 14 blocks long and 6 blocks wide. Restaurants, shops and internet cafes line the Central Avenue. There is a catholic church and a park (Parque Mario Canas Ruiz)in the center of town with shaded benches and is bustling with activity. To reach the Guanacaste you will need a rental car, taxi or shuttle.

Is the Liberia area dangerous? Are there any areas I should avoid?

No, Liberia is a very safe area to visit. Most of the crimes committed are petty and rarely violent. When walking around the city, keep your passport safely locked away in your hotel room. Pickpockets have been known to target tourists, so make sure your purses, bags, and wallets are close to your body at all times. Stay alert and contact the police immediately if you are the victim of a crime.

What are the customs for tipping in Costa Rica? Can I pay/tip in US dollars?

The currency of Costa Rica is the Colon. US dollars are not accepted. Please be sure to have the correct currency on hand or be prepared to exchange your dollars for colones upon arrival. Currency exchange desks can be found at the airport and many locations throughout the city.

I do not speak Spanish. Will many people speak English in Costa Rica?

No, about 90 percent of Costa Ricans speak Spanish as their first language. English may be spoken at your hotel and in the tourist areas, but not everywhere. We suggest that you purchase a good English-Spanish dictionary and familiarize yourself with common phrases such as hello, goodbye, excuse me and numbers 1-10.

Do I need a visa to visit Costa Rica?

No, U.S. citizens do not need a visa to enter Costa Rica for stays of less than 90 days. However, they must have a current valid passport and a return ticket to exit Costa Rica (either to return to the U.S. or to go to another country).

Are Vaccinations required to visit Costa Rica? Are there any other precautions I should take?

No, there are currently no vaccination requirements to visit Costa Rica. There is no risk of yellow fever in Costa Rica. The government of Costa Rica requires proof of yellow fever vaccination only if you are arriving from a country with risk of yellow fever. This does not include the US.

Zika is a risk in Costa Rica. Because Zika infection in a pregnant woman can cause serious birth defects, women who are pregnant should not travel to Costa Rica. All travelers should strictly follow steps to prevent mosquito bites and sexual exposure to Zika virus during and after the trip. For the latest updates visit the CDC page https://www.cdc.gov/ on the internet.

What kind of food is available in Costa Rica?

A typical breakfast is hearty and consists of Gallo Pinto (rice and beans - sometimes served with scrambled eggs). Lunch is solid too, the typical dishes are Casado (rice and beans, served with meat or fish, fried plantains, cheese and corn tortilla), Ceviche (fish marinated and cooked in lime juice, coriander, and pepper). There is not a dinner culture in Costa Rica. An afternoon snack consists of bread and coffee.

Can I drink the water in Costa Rica?

No, the water is not drinkable in Costa Rica. We suggest that you carry bottled water with you. Most tourist areas will have bottled water available for purchase.