on June 12, 2009
If I was with a group of people who wanted to party and not leave our hostel, this is the place to be. It's clean and has a bar upstairs.If you are looking for some help to plan your time in San Jose or Costa Rica, they are horrible liars that want tour commissions.I had a friend stay at Hostel Pangea and she liked it. Since it was Semana Santa (Holy Week), I was nervous about finding a hostel and made reservations for two nights. When I got there around sunset, they made me pay for both nights upfront and dimed me with deposits. I hadn't been to an ATM since I left Bocas del Toro, Panama, because I didn't want to be carrying a lot of cash, so I almost didn't have enough.Anyway, I get settled and go to ask their trip planning staff (I forget what they call it exactly), what is the best route to walk to the TUASA bus station so I can go to Volcan Poas. Are there better streets? Ones to avoid? etc. He tells me there is no bus to Poas anymore. I thought that was strange because before I left Monteverde, where I had been volunteering for six months, I made it a point to check that the national park had reopened after the earthquake in December. I asked if he was sure. He said that the bus didn't take you all the way to Poas because the road was still broken from the earthquake, BUT I could sign up for this $65 tour that included a coffee plantation tour and butterfly garden. I explained that I was meeting friends at Volcan Poas and didn't want a tour. I asked if there was some other way to get to Poas. He told me that if you took a the Poas bus, it would only take you too the town, then you had to find a taxi to take you to the park and pay for it to wait for you and it was really expensive. After much thought, I asked him about how much a taxi would be. He didn't know. I asked if he could find out an estimate from the hostel to Poas.He fiddled with his computer for a bit, then talked to two guys behind the counter. Ten minutes later he comes back and says that he doesn't know how much a taxi would be. I ask him if he could call a taxi company for me and ask. He didn't really give me an answer and started helping someone else. He suggested the tour again, and I reiterated that I didn't want a tour, only to get to Poas. Then he tries to sell me a tour to Irazu. I told him my friends weren't at Irazu, they were going to be at Poas and then gave up.Later I decide that I should try and call my friends to tell them that I might not make it to Poas to see them. I ask the same guy if I could use the phone, I had a Costa Rican calling card. He said I could use the phone for 50 colones a minute. I repeat that I have a phone card and would like to use it. He said I had to go use the public phone on the corner then. So at 8pm/9pm at night in San Jose, I wander off to the street corner to call my friends. The next day I set off early to the TUASA station to ask them if there was a way to get to the volcano. The man working there said, "Yes, it leaves there at 8:30am." I asked him if it went all the way to the park and he gave me a strange look and said, "Claro que si (of course)."I got all the way to the park, which hadn't clouded over yet (I had a view time of 1 hour before the crater disappeared behind the clouds), and met my friends, NO PROBLEMS.So, in conclusion, THE SERVICE SUCKS!!!!
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