Living in Costa Rica - The Pura Vida Lifestyle
Living the Pura Vida Dream
Costa Rica’s incredible natural beauty inspires foreigners from around the world to relocate or retire in Costa Rica, and many travelers who initially visit as tourists decide they want go from staying in a vacation rental to actually getting their Costa Rica residency. Costa Rica’s national motto is "Pura Vida" or "Pure Life" which is what the Costa Rica lifestyle is all about.
We are attracted by a country praised as the “Switzerland of the Americas” for its dedication to peace, education and democracy. We are captivated by the kind locals who are smile easily and go out of their way to help strangers. We are amazed by the many protected parks and nature reserves, pristine beaches, fanastic climate, and eco-philosophy. Our high quality of living that includes all of the above along with world-class medical care and convenient international access spurs some of us to buy real estate in Costa Rica so that we can live paradise part or full time.
Don't Worry, Be Happy in Costa Rica!
Foreigners often choose to live in Costa Rica to experience happier and healthier lives. Costa Rica has been named the Happiest Country in the World many times over the past decade in various studies such as the Happy Planet Index published by the New Economics Foundation (a British research center that promotes global well-being and sustainable development) and the University of California Berkeley’s Science of Happiness survey.
Costa Rica also enjoys a higher life expectancy than many developed countries despite spending just 15% of what America does on health care.
Longevity - Costa Rica's Blue Zone
Moreover, it seems that the “Pura Vida” or “Pure Life” motto of the Ticos, with its relaxed and eco-conscious lifestyle, is more than just appealing to people of all ages. Demographer Dan Buettner revealed that residents on the Nicoya Peninsula of Costa Rica (where the Gold Coast beaches of Flamingo and Tamarindo are located) live to the age of 100 four times more frequently as men in the United States, despite the fact that their medical costs are only about 7% as much.
For this reason, Buettner labels the Nicoya Peninsula a “blue zone” where a multitude of factors interact to facilitate longevity and health. Residents enjoy fresh tropical fruit, vegetables and fish, a wonderful dry climate with lots of sunshine, and year round access to outdoor physical activity. Pura Vida indeed!
If you do require medical care, Costa Rica has three hospitals with the prestigious JCI (Joint Commission International) certification – CIMA, Clinica Biblica, and Hospital Clinica Catolica. Modern clinics at Liberia – the city that serves North Pacific Gold Coast towns like Flamingo and Tamarindo – include CIMA and Clinica Biblica satellites and the well respected Hospital San Rafael Arcangel.
Stable Political Environment and Education
Costa Rica has enjoyed a stable democracy for more than 100 years. In 1949 Costa Rica decided to voluntarily abolish its army and dedicate all would be military expenses to education and health care. As a direct result, the literacy rate in Costa Rica rose to 95% and still continues to be one of the highest in the world. Locals have access to social medicine and employers are required by law to provide their employees with health insurance.
Biodiversity and Eco-Conscious Philosophy
The Costa Rica lifestyle involves spending fewer hours indoors and more time immersed in nature. National parks make up nearly 25% of Costa Rica, and building codes are strict to preserve sensitive ecological locations like estuaries, primary growth forests and turtle nesting sites. Costa Rica also sets goals to reduce its ecological footprint. For instance, Costa Rica achieved an amazing clean energy milestone at the outset of 2015 when it powered the country with 100% renewable energy for 75 straight days.
Although Costa Rica makes up only .03% of the earth’s surface, our unique country boasts 5% of earth’s biodiversity – a density that is unequalled anywhere else in the world. When you live in Costa Rica, you’ll be surrounded by wildlife that includes tropical birds, monkeys, pizotes, mapaches and lizards. You’ll enjoy protected mangroves at the beach and tropical flowers that bloom year round in your garden.
Costa Rica Diet – Eat Well, Feel Healthy!
The Costa Rica lifestyle offers a wealth of healty eating options. Our diet is rich with anti-oxidant rich tropical fruits and vegetables like pineapple, mango, watermelon, avocado, cataloupe and coconut which are available all year. Fresh fish is standard in the Costa Rica diet, with plentiful mahi mahi, red snapper, tuna, shrimp, lobster and other seafood. And our Costa Rica coffee is best you will ever drink!
Since more foreigners are relocating to Costa Rica, our favorite foods from home can also be found in the local markets. You’ll find wasabi and ginger for your fresh tuna, gnocchi for your home-made pasta sauce, and cranberries for your holiday turkey in quaint stores like the Super Masai in Flamingo or larger supermarkets like the popular AutoMercado in Tamarindo.
Costa Rica has potable water in the majority of the country, which makes living and traveling easy. Moreover, Costa Ricans are very conscious of cleanliness, and it is safe to dine out at local restaurants called sodas and small bards throughout the country.
No wonder we moved from Vancouver to Costa Rica nearly 20 years ago! Our happy and healthy clients have traveled from around the globe to purchase their piece of Costa Rica real estate paradise. The Costa Rica lifestyle is truly Pura Vida!