I moved to Costa Rica 1 year ago, and I am totally in love with this country. There are so many things that I like here, and so many things that I miss from my country. Mostly the food! I am a vegetarian, so you can imagine my ordeal.
But, my love for this country surpasses everything else. Let me walk you through some of the things I like the most about Costa Rica.
1. Slow pace of life
Costa Ricans are never in a rush. They take things slow and enjoy the process. ‘Pura Vida’ which means pure life or simple life is a commonly used phrase in Costa Rica. It’s not just a saying here, it’s a way of life. It’s imbibed in the country’s culture and the people’s attitude.
This is probably why Costa Rica ranks high on the Happiness Index and is one of the happiest countries in the world.
2. Work-life balance
Many countries in Asia have a poor work-life balance. Employees have no fixed working hours and they are often asked to work overtime and/or on weekends. That too for no extra payment.
In Costa Rica, this is not the case. There are fixed work timings here, and no one is expected to work overtime or on holidays. If for any reason, you need to work beyond your normal working hours, you get paid up to 1.5-2 times hourly. And for working on weekends or national holidays, you get paid double. Isn’t that amazing?
3. Strong presence of ecotourism
Costa Rica is a pioneer of ecotourism, drawing tourists to its extensive series of national parks and other protected areas. Over 21% of the national territory (half a million acres of land) is marked for conservation, one of the highest ratios in the world. This includes 30 national parks, 19 reserves, and 58 wildlife refuges.
Ecotourism is one of the prime industries in its economy, with the tourism sector responsible for 5.1% of the country’s GDP.
4. Something for everyone
Are you a beach person? Or are you a mountain person? Or do you like volcanoes? No, you are into partying. Well, there is something for everyone in Costa Rica. That too, within a radius of 200 km.
This is something I love about this country. I can have all kinds of experiences without having to travel much. Every place is a weekend trip for me, and I don’t need to plan in advance or book flight tickets.
5. Good quality of air
Costa Rica has a good air quality index i.e 32. Costa Rica was the first tropical country to have stopped and reversed deforestation. So naturally, you see dense green forests everywhere you go. Because of this, the air is very clean and there is less pollution.
6. Little presence of e-commerce
Now, if you are wondering how that is a good point, let me explain.
Coming from a country where e-commerce is the backbone of every business, I had to learn to do without it in Costa Rica. But, I found that to be a good change! I am more mindful now, and I end up spending less on unnecessary purchases. Also, I consume less plastic, which is the most disputed drawback of e-commerce.
I am looking forward to living for more years in Costa Rica, getting to know the Ticos, blending in the culture, and truly inculcating the ‘Pura Vida’ lifestyle. Cheers!