San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Cartago-San José train is back

Forget about traffic jams and closed streets, there’s a new fast and comfortable way to travel from Cartago to San José and vice versa.

The Costa Rican Railroad Institute (INCOFER) last Friday inaugurated train service between the two provinces, at a distance of 21 kilometers and a trip duration of 43 minutes one-way.

The first train leaves the station in Cartago at 5:30 a.m. and arrives at the Estación del Atlántico in downtown San José at about 6:13 a.m. A train leaves the station every 30 minutes until 8 a.m. Service starts again at 4 p.m. and runs every 30 minutes until 7:30 p.m.

On the way, the train stops at stations in Tres Rios, Universidad Autonoma de Centroamérica, Colegio Federado de Ingenieros y Arquitectos (in Curridabat), Universidad Latina and University of Costa Rica (in San Pedro).

“This new service allows me to get to class on time without worrying about traffic,” said Pamela López, a student from Cartago.

Tickets are sold at the San José and Cartago stations or inside the train. The cost is ₡550 ($1.10).

Train service between Cartago and San José was suspended 18 years ago, during the administration of President José María Figueres.

Contact Alberto Font at

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