More than Just a Hill of Beans.
Costa Rica is a democratic Central Americancountry bordered to the north by Nicaragua,Panama to the south, and cradled betweenthe mighty Paciﬁc Ocean andthe majestic Caribbean. TheNicoya Peninsula, whichextends like the thumb of a mitten on the country’swest coast, was the lastarea explored by theSpanish conquistadoresin the sixteenth century.Christopher Columbus vis-ited Costa Rica on his fourthand ﬁnal voyage to “The NewWorld” in 1502 and gave thecountry its modern name,mistakenly believing itwas rich with preciousmetals. Thankfully CostaRica’s location affordedit relative isolation fromcontrol by the SpanishCrown and saved its peo-ple from the slave labor experienced by many of itsnorthern neighbors. Ticos andTicas, terms the native peoplesproudly refer to themselves as,deriving from unique linguis-tic twists to their Spanish(Costa Ricans might say‘momentico’ instead of ‘momentito’, etc.), learnedto work their lands, andover time, developeda “rural democracy”. In1821 Costa Rica ofﬁciallyproclaimed itself sovereign,
breaking from Spain, and movedtheir capital city to San José.Costa Rica boasts a richmelting pot of culturesthanks to its peoples’ invitingand care-free attitude whichcan be summed up in a pop-ular phrase, ‘Pura Vida!’, liter-ally meaning, ‘Pure Life’. ManyCanadians, Americans, Europe-ans and other peoples have ﬂockedto Costa Rica over the past ﬁftyyears, making life in “The Gold-en Destination” comfortableno matter where you comefrom. Costa Ricans moveddirectly from an agrariansociety to a service orientedsociety- this societal jumpmay have actually savedtheir precious ecological andbiological environments fromthe ravages experienced by manyindustrialized nations while their economy enjoyed a boost froman inﬂux of foreign monies.Today Costa Rica enjoyseven further successes,attracting companies such asIntel and Hewlett Packard,ensuring its place as the bestinvestment South of the Border.