By John A. Davis
Ok here is the answer and some info. There is a bus that leaves Nicoya and will get you 800m from the park or Hotel Las Cavernas link. It leaves from La Parada Municipal(Mercado) in Nicoya @ 11:30am & 4:30am. Make sure you tell them “Parque National Barra Honda” link and not just “Barra Honda” (the town).
There is a return bus at 7am & 12pm. Saturdays only morning bus and on Sunday no bus.
Here is more info:
You will have to walk the 800m to the park entrance. If no car, then uphill another 2km to get to the trails and anther 2km to get to either the lookout(Mirada) or the big cavern. You pay for entrance and guide at the park entrance. Not sure you need a guide if you are going in the cavern, just hiking/backpacking. Bring items to wash the dirt off your hands if climbing down into the cavern. Dirt from the shoes somehow makes it onto everything you touch. More water and papertowels work, I luckily had wet wipes and water. More water the better especially if you are backpacking and camping out. There are 3 English speaking guides and high riding 2×4’s can make it the whole way, if not to just 50m from the top parking lot. Suzuki Swift type car might be too low and difficult to find place to park if such is the case. Cavern climb is tough but doable and they belay you on a strong rope should you slip. Bring something to wipe the sweat/fog off your eyeglasses. Go as early as possible, cavern is only open 8am-1pm. I noticed as backpacking option on the sign up sheet. Guide said monkeys weren’t a problem.
The hotel Las Cavernas cost me 10k Colones with aircon/breakfast. Was not fancy. Nice swimming pool and owners do not speak English. I made some new friends with them.
If coming by car look for signs for the park and DO NOT take a route instead that Google maps says, 8 minutes faster. Google blew it until I was actually there and heading out, and no, Waze couldn’t even find the place. No internet or phone service once you pass through town of Barra Honda. Best food options, restaurant/do your own are in Nicoya. Hwy 21 out of Nicoya, turn onto Hwy 18 and you will start seeking signs. Hope this helps.
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