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How to get from Liberia Airport (LIR) to La Fortuna

A visit to Costa Rica isn’t complete without a visit to the iconic Arenal Volcano. You’ll find this and much more when visiting the small town of La Fortuna in the province of Alajuela. Walk along rainforest trails to the natural swimming pool at La Fortuna waterfall, find out if you’re scared of heights at Arenal Hanging Bridges, and unwind in one of the many hot springs fed by active volcanoes in the area.

The main transport options from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna are by taxi, private transfer, or public bus. The taxi and private transfer take between 155 and 180 minutes, depending on how heavy the traffic is and a taxi costs €237 (CRC 135,000) for up to 4 people. On the other hand, taking the bus only costs €11 (CRC 6,240) per traveller but it requires 3 transfers across 4 buses and has a journey time of 300 minutes, excluding wait times.

Welcome Pickups offers meet and greet services and a friendly introduction to Liberia at the same price as a regular taxi. Click here to see the cost.

Comparison of the options

Taxi €237 155min 24/7
Bus €22 300min 04:30–21:30

How to get from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna by taxi

Taking a taxi from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna is the only direct transport option for this journey which takes around 155 minutes during light traffic. Look for government-regulated airport taxis which are orange with an official logo on the sides. 

Taxi fare from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna

For an airport taxi transfer from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna, you can expect to pay around €237 (CRC 135,000) for up to 4 passengers. Fares are calculated using a taximeter, factoring in the time and distance travelled and the vehicle type. Additional costs for any stops along the way and having your driver wait, as well as tolls and surcharges, will be added on top. The driver will also expect you to provide a tip; 10-15% of the total fare price is a good guide.

For an up-front set rate fee with no hidden extras, we recommend booking a private transfer in advance with Welcome Pickups so you can plan and budget for your trip. You’ll get a competitive rate, personalised service, 24/7 customer service, and ride in style!



Trip Duration

155 Min.

*Fares vary unless booked in advance.

Value for Money

Taxis are available 24/7 from Liberia Airport.

Where do I take a taxi from?

There are dedicated taxi ranks located in front of the Arrivals Hall of Liberia Airport.


By far the quickest and easiest way to cover the distance from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna in Costa Rica is to take an airport taxi directly to your accommodation. This is the only direct option and it takes less than half the time of the public bus.

Editor’s Note

For longer journeys, it is common to negotiate a set rate fare but the price may depend on how well you speak Spanish.

Useful Tips

Always travel directly to your destination and for a smoother journey, have your hotel address written down in Spanish to assist your driver.
If you are using the taximeter, make sure it has been reset to zero before departing.
If your route requires driving on rural or rough roads, the fare will likely cost extra.

How to get from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna by bus

There isn’t a direct bus from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna and travelling by public bus can be quite tricky with a total journey time of at least 5 hours, not including any wait times. However, it is a very cheap way to travel if you are willing to make several bus connections.

You’ll first need to make your way from to Liberia’s city centre from the airport, where you can take a bus from the Terminal de Buses Municipal to Cañas which takes 70 minutes. From the drop-off point in Cañas, you’ll need to take a taxi or walk the 1 km to Parada de Buses Cañas, where you need to board a 30-minute bus to the Parada de Buses in Tilaran. From Tilaran, take another bus towards Quesada which passes through La Fortuna after around 150 minutes.

*It is also possible to travel from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna by shuttle bus. Numerous companies offer shared shuttle bus services which cost around €64 (CRC 36,500) per person and take around 210 minutes.

Bus fare from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna

Tickets for each of the buses will need to be purchased separately from the driver or the relevant bus station, in cash. It is best to pay in colones as you will be charged more if you pay in US dollars, although it is possible.

From the airport to the city centre, the cost is around €5 (CRC 2,800) per person. From Liberia bus station to Cañas, the bus run by Reyna Del Campo costs around €2.60 (CRC 1,515) per person. For each person from Cañas to Tilaran, a ticket from José Luis Villalobos Corrales bus company is €0.60 (CRC 325) and from Tilaran to La Fortuna you’ll pay around €2.80 (CRC 1,600).

The total cost to transfer from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna by a combination of local buses is around €11 (CRC 6,240) per person.



Trip Duration

300 Min.

Buses from the airport to Liberia city centre depart every 30 minutes. Buses from Liberia bus terminal to Cañas depart every 20 to 90 minutes.

Value for Money

Buses from the airport operate between 04:30 and 22:00. Buses from Liberia bus station operate between 04:30 and 21:30.

Where do I take the bus from?

The bus from the airport to the city centre leaves from the departures lobby area in the airport terminal. Buses to Cañas depart from Terminal de Buses Municipal and buses from Cañas towards Tilaran depart from Parada de Buses Cañas. Lastly, buses toward La Fortuna leave from the Parada de Buses Tilaran.


Although travelling by public bus is certainly the cheapest transport option for this journey, you’ll have to make several bus connections with no set schedule while carrying luggage, which means it is definitely not the most convenient way to travel.

A much more reliable and straightforward alternative is to book a private Liberia Airport to La Fortuna shuttle with a company such as Welcome Pickups, where a driver will deliver you directly to your destination in La Fortuna.

Editor’s Note

Online bus schedules are not always kept up to date; the most up-to-date schedules are found at the bus station which makes it difficult to plan in advance. With this in mind, be prepared to wait for up to 2 hours for a bus.

Useful Tips

Tickets can't be purchased online in advance which means it is wise to arrive at the bus station early to buy tickets in person before they sell out. If sold out, you will need to wait for the next available service.
Buses in Costa Rica depart from specific bus stations depending on their destinations so it's important you go to the correct one.
Let the driver know the name of your accommodation in La Fortuna so that they can drop you off as close as possible to minimise any onward travel.

Welcome Pickups has a Net Safety Score of 99 of 100

We’ve introduced a metric indicating how safe travellers feel when using our services during the COVID-19 pandemic. After every ride, we ask each traveller to leave a review.

  • 20 minute gap between transfers

  • Regular Car Sanitisation

  • Contactless ride

  • Sanitiser in every car

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Frequently asked questions

How do I get from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna?

To get from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna there are two main transport options: take a taxi or private transfer which takes around 155 minutes, or make several public bus connections with a total journey time of more than 300 minutes, not including transfer and wait times.

For a personalised door-to-door service with a local English-speaking driver, we recommend booking a private transfer in advance.

How long is the Liberia Airport to La Fortuna drive?

The distance from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna in Costa Rica is 143 km which takes between 155 and 180 minutes when travelling by taxi or private transfer.

How much is a taxi from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna?

The average price of a taxi from Liberia Airport to La Fortuna for up to 4 people is €237 (CRC 135,000).

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