From San José International Airport
The drive from the San José airport (Juan Santamaria International Airport) to Manuel Antonio will take about 2 hours and 30 minutes and is fully paved with the new highway in place. Drive defensively and be aware when two lanes become one, "CEDA" means "Yield".
Once on Route 1 (Inter American Highway) - follow signs to San Ramon, and continue straight ahead for about 10 km. After the second bridge crossing, get in the right lane and take the next exit (Route 3) for Jaco / Quepos / Manuel Antonio. There is also a sign here for Punta Leona and Atenas. Turn left at the stop sign, crossing back over Route 1.
Follow Route 3 for about 3 km. Look for a large Christian church on the left and then a soccer field and make a left on the road immediately after it. There are no signs and it's a secondary road, so don't think you've made a mistake. It's currently the best connection to the toll highway from the airport.
Drive for another 3 km through this somewhat winding road. Once you arrive at the highway intersection turn left BEFORE the highway. Again, there are no signs here yet. Be careful as it's a narrow two-way gravel access road. After some 300 meters you will arrive at a roundabout. Make a right following the highway signs to Orotina / Atenas.
Drive on the highway through 2 toll booths. Then, take the next right exit to Route 34; follow signs for Jaco /Quepos. This exit forms a loop and then you bypass a roundabout to continue straight to Jaco (another 36 km).
Follow Route 34 (also called Costanera) for a while and you will cross over the Tárcoles River Bridge - there are usually a few cars parked before/after the bridge since it is a popular viewing point for the crocodiles in and around the river.
Follow the signs to Jaco and Manuel Antonio. At 157.6 km, you will come to a “Y” in the road. You will see a sign with Quepos, Manuel Antonio bearing off to the right.
Once in Quepos, you will drive past many small shops. The road becomes one lane and you need to turn left just after passing a small park. You will see signs pointing to Manuel Antonio. You are now leaving Quepos and are on the road to Manuel Antonio.
This is the beginning of a curvy mountain road (very steep at times). Follow this road for about 10 minutes, until you arrive to a flat area. You will see another football field on your left and about 100 meters after that, a supermarket called SUPER JOSETH. Continue the main road. The road will go down gently until you arrive to a restaurant called BARBA ROJA (on the right hand side of the road). 50 meters up after this restaurant, you will see a coffee shop on your left called CAFÉ MILAGRO. IMMEDIATELY on your right hand side is the dirt road that leads to Hotel La Mariposa.
After 50 meters on this road, you will see the hotel’s gate on your left!
You made it. Welcome to La Mariposa!!!