We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Parking a car with all our luggage

Naperville, Illinois
Level Contributor
43 posts
Save Topic
Parking a car with all our luggage

Hello,

We arrive at SJO at night and plan to stay at a hotel near by and then drive out to Poas first thing in the morning, as we hear that's our best shot at a clear view before the clouds roll in, on our way to La Fortuna. We will be traveling with all of our luggage and I have read many times to never leave anything in a parked car. Is the parking at the park guarded? Is it safe to park our car with everything in the trunk at this location, or would it be better for us to take turns and someone always stay with the car?

Thank you. I would hate to have our luggage stolen on day 1 of the trip!

12 replies to this topic
San Jose, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
46,036 posts
32 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Parking a car with all our luggage

YES…the parking lots are fully guarded at POAS….be sue you mention to the guards that your luggage is there…sometimes they offer some safest places to park the cars like yours…I have had been driving to Poas for the last 60 years…and now days is better than ever…

Please enjoy our country as we natives do…

roadadvisor

Naperville, Illinois
Level Contributor
43 posts
Save Reply
2. Re: Parking a car with all our luggage

Phew. Huge sigh of relief. We were going to take turns hiking with the kids while one of us stayed at the car. Thank you so much for your on-hand knowledge. Looking forward to it!

Costa Rica
Level Contributor
25,655 posts
25 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Parking a car with all our luggage

Good advice from roadadvisor- but - I would put your valuables in a day pack and keep that with you. Put your luggage out of sight as much as possible and don't leave anything else visible.

Montreal, Canada
Level Contributor
404 posts
25 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Parking a car with all our luggage

I agree with Hattie. When we went we took a backpack with all our valuables and left the Rest in the trunk (visible if someone happened to be looking but otherwise not so obvious). There was a lot of security and I don't see theives paying the entrance fees for the national park, but I like to have passports/phones/computers with me just in case.

Naperville, Illinois
Level Contributor
43 posts
Save Reply
5. Re: Parking a car with all our luggage

Good advice. Thanks, guys. Is anyone familiar with how long the drive is from Poas to La Fortuna?

San Jose, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
46,036 posts
32 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Parking a car with all our luggage

About 3 hours and 45 minutes ..driving vack to Alajuela taking Pan Am all the way to San Ramon then follow signs to La Fortuna...

You can also take the Sarapiqui shirt cut...I do not like it pesonally...but you may save about 45 to 1 hiur drive...if is a lot of rain think about ut...not very srabke grounds around...possible yes...risky YES

roadadvisor

Pensacola, Florida
Level Contributor
877 posts
282 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Parking a car with all our luggage

We always bring a bicycle lock with us when we travel around Costa Rica. We connect the cable through all of our bags, and make sure that it is in plain sight that the bags are locked, We still use some common sense about where we park, but we have never had an issue with leaving our bags in the car. That being said, I agree that you should have a back pack to carry any valubles with you when you leave you car.

Nowhere
Destination Expert
for Playa Samara
Level Contributor
3,951 posts
79 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Parking a car with all our luggage

Allow me to be a dissenter here: There is no way that I would ever leave my bags in an unattended car anywhere in Costa Rica. Not ever - guard or no guard. And I would certainly never leave ANYTHING of value in it:

My car was broken into and the radio stolen while it was parked in front of a security guard at a department store. He didn't see a thing...

My car was broken into while it was parked in front of a small grocery store - the car was there for less than ten minutes!

My car was broken into while it was parked at the beach - twice. Once in a "guarded" lot (they stole the ashtray - go figure) and once along the side of the road.

My car was broken into while I was at a restaurant having dinner - with a guard patrolling the parking lot...

Of course, all this happened over the course of a number of years. By caparison, in MANY more years of owning cars in the EU and the US, my car was broken into exactly once...

Edited: 14 August 2014, 06:33
San Jose, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
46,036 posts
32 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Parking a car with all our luggage

Parking attendants AT POAS and any other National Park...are Park Rangers...not a regular person taking care of a car in middle oc no where...

I have had parking cars full of luggage there for years...as far as I remember never ever a car was broken...of course...ALWAYS ask the PRk Rangers...even ask the names...if you do not trust our Park Rangers you better stay home...tbey are decent responsible people now days even with some College educagion...trust them they are great people...my really first job was a Park Ranger in Poas...I did not last because was to cold for me...

roadadvisor

Pensacola, Florida
Level Contributor
877 posts
282 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Parking a car with all our luggage

We have stopped at several places throughout Costa Rica while traveling from one place to another, with out bags in the car. As roadadvisor said, we will normally ask the Rangers where the best place to park is with our luggage in the car, and we have not had an issue. In some places that are "managed" by the locals to raise money for schools, we have always tipped them a small amount and let them know that our luggage is in the car, and we have never had an issue with that either. There is no doubt that you can get you car broken into, but the would be robbers will think twice when they see that all the bags are connected together, Doesn't make for a quick get away when you are trying to lug a bunch of bags that are hooked together.

Reply to: Parking a car with all our luggage
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted
Get answers to your questions about Poas Volcano National...
Recent Conversations
More Poas Volcano National Park Topics