Mal Pais Services & Facilities
Cell phone reception is unpredictable around Mal Pais and Santa Teresa, but signals seem to be stronger at lower elevations. Up in the hills, reception is poor, but it is almost always possible to find pockets of service.
Pay phones are located in Santa Teresa near the soccer field, next to El Carmen Commercial Center opposite the liquor store, in Brunella’s Plaza, and beside the Super La Hacienda. Most are operated by phone card, not coins; purchase a phone card in any pharmacy or grocery store in Costa Rica.
There are numerous Internet cafes in Santa Teresa, along with many restaurants that provide wireless service to their customers. One of the more comfortable Internet cafes is located next to Kina’s Surf Shop, adjacent to Pizza Tomate. They charge about $2 per hour and offer six desktop computers. Wireless Internet is available for those with laptops, free of charge for restaurant patrons. They are open daily from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
There is a small mailbox in front of Internet Pizza Tomate that accepts postcards and letters. For larger pieces of mail, ask your hotel manager if they are able to send and receive packages. Otherwise, they must be handled at the post office in Cobano.
Banco Nacional has a 24-hour ATM machine and bank in the El Carmen Commercial Center. Banco de Costa Rica also has a bank and 24-hour ATM machine across the street, on the corner. Remember that a passport is required for all transactions within the bank and copies are not accepted for security reasons.
A full-service gas station is located about a mile and a half up the road toward Cobano.
Amigas Pharmacy is located in the El Carmen Commercial Center, along with Paradise Medical Services (Tel. 2640-1010). There is another clinic on the road to Cobano, and an ambulance service with EMS 2000 (Tel. 2665-3775). For all major emergencies in Costa Rica, dial 911.