Costa Rica, which means ”Coast Rich,” is a South American country which is 284 miles wide and has a coast line of 801 miles across both the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans.
Costa Rica has a population of approximately 4.9 million people. Spanish is the official language, but most people also speak English. The currency is the Colon, which is linked to the US Dollar.
The capital, San Jose, was founded in 1736 and has a vibrant feel -- especially in the upmarket, fun suburb of Heredia. The atmosphere here is so friendly that it contributed to Costa Rica being placed 12th in the Happy Planet Index.
Heredia isn't the only reason Costa Rica is a wonderful country, though. The longevity of the Costa Rican people (who can expect to reach the age of 79) is one of the highest in the world. In fact, Costa Rica is also not only the safest country but also the one with the highest standard of living in South America. All this together makes Costa Rica ideal for digital nomads and the coliving lifestyle.
The country is made up of 7 departments, Heredia, Cartago, Alajuela, Puntarenas, Guanacaste, Limon and San Jose. These areas are very diverse and are home to 5% of the world's animal and plant life. The country is also home to 112 volcanoes. The largest volcano, Poas, has the 2nd largest crater in the world.
About 25% of Costa Rica is given over to national parks. These parks protect the huge variety of animal and bird life found there, which includes 4 types of monkey and 52 types of hummingbird. 10% of the world's butterflies reside in Costa Rica, and the orchid is the national flower.
In Costa Rica, food is both important and exciting. You can expect a breakfast, “Gallo Pinto,” rice and beans, to be served in a “Soda,” a local food stop for as little as $2 to $3.
By the way -- amazing sunsets and sunrises aren't just common in Costa Rica, but they happen at exactly the same time of day, every day.
Facts about Costa Rica:
- Over 2 million tourists visit annually.
- The book,”Treasure Island” was based on the Isla De Coco, where it is believed treasure is still buried.
- Christopher Columbus was the first European to arrive in Costa Rica in 1502, landing in Puerto Limon.
- Tarot Card Reading is still practiced today, in the area known as Brujas (meaning, "witches")
- Sir Francis Drake has a bay named after him. It is believed he left buried treasure on the Isla De Coco.
- There are 57 different words meaning rain in the Costa Rican dialect.
- Mount Chirrup is 12500 ft high.
- In 1990 the Women’s Equality Bill was passed by the government of Costa Rica. In 2010 Laura Chinchilla was elected as the first female President.
- In Costa Rican slang, your romantic partner is called "mi media naranja" -- "the other half of my orange."