Costa Rica - General

 
1. Costa Rica - General
 2. Costa Rica - Geographical
 3. Costa Rica - Tourism
 4. Costa Rica - Media
Introduction
Costa Rica Location
Population and Language
Religion
Churches
Climate
Government
Electrical Energy
Water
Telephony
Postal system
Highways
Public transportation
Banking
Office schedules
 
  Introduction
If you ever dreamed of a vacation in a country that offers miles and miles of pristine beaches with gorgeous sunsets, active volcanoes with volcanic hot springs, lush jungles with an astonishing biodiversity and, to top it all, a climate that is like no other, Costa Rica might be the country that you dreamed off.
Small and welcoming, Costa Rica has something for every taste; you can come for a week to one of the many beach towns Costa Rica offers (Tamarindo, Jaco, Manuel Antonio to name a few) and just bake in the sun, turning from side to side when it gets too hot, or go inland and explore Costa Rica’s Volcanoes, Rivers and the National Parks.

Costa Rica has a variety of National Parks representing a multitude of unique Ecosystems, Costa Rica is famous around the world for its Sport Fishing, and Costa Rica is a Surfer’s Paradise. Beach, Adventure and Nature, these are the words that describe best Costa Rica, and the country provides endless amounts of Pure Fun, Pure Life, Pura Vida!

 
Costa Rica Location
 

Costa Rica is a small country placed in Central America with a surface of 51.100 km2. Costa Rica’s relatively small size is from many points of view a great advantage and makes Costa Rica a relatively comfortable to travel, one of the sayings here in Costa Rica is that you can in one day see the Pacific Ocean, visit a Volcano in the Northern plains and arrive to the Caribbean Ocean at night. Costa Rica has a diversity of flora and fauna like very few places in the world have and climate is typical for the Inter-tropical zone. Costa Rica for its geographical location is a biological and cultural bridge (As a part of Central America) that unites the cultures of the North and South of the American Continent. As for Costa Rica’s geological formation the country is a part of the relatively new American Continent.
Due to Costa Rica’s geographical location, the country is exposed during almost the whole year to winds coming from the East, the Caribbean Ocean, bringing moisture that later on forms the clouds and bring the rain that so characterizes Costa Rica.

  Costa Rica Population and Language
 

Costa Rica has an approximate population of 4.000.000 inhabitants whose mother tongue is Spanish. In addition, other languages as English, French, German and Italian are spoken in many places by foreign business owners and multilingual guides. Costa Rica’s population is distributed in seven provinces that divide the country: San Jose, Alajuela, Heredia, Carthage, Guanacaste, Puntarenas and Lemon. The capital is in the province of San Jose, which is also the most populated province in Costa Rica.

 
Costa Rica Religion
 
  The Catholicism is the official religion in Costa Rica, but the freedom of worship is guaranteed.
  Costa Rica Churches  
 

Almost all of the Costa Ricans practice the Christian faith, in the Catholic Church. Almost all of the biggest and most famous houses of god are in the bigger San Jose Metropolitan. In San Jose you will find San Isidro's Church of Tonsured which was built according to Gothic style, located just few kilometers from San Jose, the Basilica of Our Lady of the Angels (Province of Cartago). Costa Rica preserved a few temples constructed in the colonial epoch such as the temples in Orosi, Quircot, Nicoya and Heredia.

  Costa Rica Climate  
 

Costa Rica is a tropical country placed between two oceans and with a complex geography that originates varied climatic conditions. Many ecosystems exist in Costa Rica, from the tropical dry forest up to the moorland and lush dense jungle vegetation. In Costa Rica the temperatures ranges between the 20 and 30 centigrade grades, though in Costa Rica there are no climatic definite stations and the climate of every region is kept relatively stable during the whole year. The two main seasons in Costa Rica are the "summer season (dry period)” and “winter season” or “Dry Season” and “Green Season”. It is usual for the summer period to be from December until April and that of winter period from May to November.
Remember – unless you are in the mountains – IT NEVER GETS COLD HERE – Winter is called winter only because it rains a lot…

  Costa Rica’s Government
  A Democratic Republic, Costa Rica political system is divided into three centers:

1. Executive power: President of the Republic, chosen by means of direct elections, every four years, cannot be re-elected. Two Vice-presidents, A Presidential Office composed by 18 Ministers of State, who assume portfolios in economic matters, social matters, productive matters and cultural matters.

2. Legislature: integrated by 57 deputies (responsible representatives for legislating Costa Rica’s laws).

3. Judicial power: it is formed by a Supreme Court, which consists of four chambers.
They are arranged by the Political Constitution of Costa Rica, the Supreme Court of Elections, with independence of the Power of the Republic.

  Costa Rica Electrical Energy
  About 80% of Costa Rica’s energy supply comes from water energy, systems of damns and rivers that generate the power supply for Costa Rica. This is a remarkable achievement and a proof for the nature and conservative orientation of this country. 110 volts.

  Costa Rica Water
  Water in Costa Rica is pure and drinkable in most parts of Costa Rica. It is recommended to ask the locals before drinking tap water or just go on the safe side and by bottled water available everywhere.
  Costa Rica Telephony
  Costa Rica is one of the most efficient in Latin America. International Calls are accessible from most locations in the country. Costa Rica has an efficient network of public phones accessible all over the country for the use of locals and visitors.
  Costa Rica Postal system
  Costa Rica has a national network of Offices, Central Office of Post office of Costa Rica.
  Costa Rica Highways
  The roads in Costa Rica are not always easy to navigate, and many of them are poorly maintained, this is partially due to heavy rainfall and the movement of land during small and larger earthquakes that frequent the region. Costa Rica is famous for the potholes in its asphalt roads, and many times rivers overflow so passage is difficult or even impossible (Mainly in the region of South Guanacaste and South Central Pacific.

When driving in Costa Rica always make sure that you know where you are trying to reach, what is a head and what are the road conditions, consult with the locals and drive slow.

We have been driving around Costa Rica for 4 years and we can testify that it is possible and even fun, as the scenery is gorgeous, just like driving on a Jungle Safari.

  Costa Rica Public transportation
  Public transportation in Costa Rica is almost always available anywhere in the country, not always punctual but usually reasonable. With a system of public busses and red colored taxis the country provides easy access to all. Public busses are the chipset option with ticket prices that are usually less than 5$ per direction (even on transportation services that takes 6 hours), next are the red taxis and many private companies that provide comfortable rides to nearly every “worth a visit” destination in Costa Rica.

learn more about Shuttle Services and Domestic Flights

  Costa Rica Banking
  Costa Rica has many country owned banks and a few private held banks. Banks and Automated Cash Machines can be found in every major destination in Costa Rica. Bank’s schedule is usually Monday to Friday between 8:30 am to 3:00 pm (Some banks are opened until later hours). Most banks allow for international banking services by means of the International Banking System. The official currency in Costa Rica is the "Colon" and the exchange rate in relation to the American dollar fluctuates greatly. It is possible to change dollars in any bank. International credit cards and traveler’s checks are accepted in the majority of business establishments.

In many touristy towns you can easily pay with Dollars instead of having to exchange money to Colones.

  Costa Rica Office schedules
  Costa Rica office schedule changes according to the type of company and institution. The majority of the governmental offices attend the public from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Private companies; from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Shops and commercial businesses are opened from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
In San Jose Metropolitan area there are super markets that are open 24 hours a day.


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