Costa Rica a land of contrast and enjoyment
Costa Rica offers an outstanding array of lifestyle opportunities for expats looking for a tropical paradise to call home. From cool highland mountains, warm and exciting central valley city life, low land farms to hot sexy naughty beach life, there is something for everyone in Costa Rica.
Life in the tropics, where days and nights have the same time year round, is where we loose all sense of time. Where one day leads to the next in an endless pattern of mornings, afternoons and nights. Memories blend together such that time overlaps, melts, disappears and new friends become old and all is as if it has always been so.
Costa Rica has many different areas that provide such variety in climate, activities, people, shopping and nightlife, that to read an online guide and then decide where to go would be difficult unless the writer had spent much time in all locals and was not under the pay of some local real estate company, marketing group, or book publisher. I can only tell of those areas that I have lived in, visited, or know of thru hearsay. My tales of costa rica blend together and cannot be distinguished from reality. The only truth will be your presence here, to see for yourself what joy or misery you will find in Costa Rica.
I live outside Tilaran on Lake Arenal in Costa Rica. A stunningly beautiful area with outdoor activities and sleepy night life. I wake before the sun and fall to sleep by 9pm. I do not miss the noise of city life, the wild parties and all night drinking and dancing. I love the tranquility and the easy lifestyle. There is not a single traffic light for 50 miles and only one or two actual stop signs. We drive with courtesy for others and give rides to strangers who live on our mountain roads and are too poor (or too smart) to own their own car.
At times I miss the roar of the violent ocean waves beating upon a white sand beach filled with bikini clad latin beauties and if so I drive the 2 hours to any of a dozen beaches in Guanacaste where I find pleasure in the baking sun and smiling interactions. There are so many awesome beach towns in Costa Rica that to name one or two would be a disservice to any whose names are on my lips but failed to make it to print. This is an area that you must come and explore for yourself as everyone has different tastes and desires.
I know Costa Rica well, having driven about 100,000 miles around this country on a hundred vacation trips over the years. I know what I like and I know what I don’t like and that’s one reason that I find it so pleasant to stay home in the mountains and not leave often. There is little that I lack. That is, i have few unfulfilled desires. When I lived in the USA I was always seeking satisfaction and rarely achieving it. There was an emptiness about life that I could not drink or screw or dance or sleep away. I found pursuit of knowledge, friendships, experiences, and material goods to be my life. But here in Costa Rica I find fulfillment in the beauty of my gardens, of the song of the birds, and the love of my friends.
What can I tell you of Costa Rica that you do not all ready know? There is only one truth and that is yours and to find your truth you must come and find your place in the sun where satisfaction smiles.
If you are considering retirement, and who doesn’t occasionally think about the final stages of life on earth, then you may be considering retirement in Costa Rica because you have heard that it is a beautiful country with friendly people and lower costs then home. You have heard that Costa Rica has open arms for retirees who want to buy a home and live out their golden years in the tropical splendor of central america. What you have heard is not to far off from what I have heard and know from over 20 years of living in Costa Rica.
Many of the books and web sites that promote retirement in Costa Rica tell you that you do not need to know the language, but this is an absolute lie. Failure to speak even basic spanish will leave you feeling frustrated, incomplete and surrounded by other expats who speak your native tongue. You will miss out on so much of the fun of learning a new culture, of communication in a foreign language, of laughing at jokes. Be sure when you decide to move to Costa Rica that you are dedicated enough to learn spanish, which is actually quite an easy language to pickup. I spent 3 years in San Jose with a self teaching book and a variety of girl friends, and avoided all english speakers so that I after these 3 years of solid emersion I had a real start on the language. I am always learning new words and perfecting my accent, even after 20 years here.
Another item of interest to those considering Costa Rica as a place to retire, is the cost of housing. A recent study of housing costs in latin america showed Costa Rica to be the most expensive place for home ownership and I must say that it can be expensive to buy or build a home in Costa Rica. However, once you have your home paid for, maintaining your home is relatively easy and not expensive. My house keeper, with four kids, lives on a monthly income of about $300, yet she is going to build herself a small house of her very own. She will receive a government grant and loan program that helps single mothers own a home. But I also have a friend with a house at the beach on a stunning mountain top with a 360 degree panoramic view that is for sale for nearly $900,000!
Health care is a common topic among the older people who come here to retire. You can buy into the local health care system, which is modeled after the system setup by the AMA, which works reasonably well, mind you there may be some wait time involved in getting seen by your doctor. The price is reasonable and in fact is a requirement of many of the legal retirement status that would apply for here. If you like homeopathy, this too can be found in Costa Rica, along with ancient herbal healers.
Real Estate on Lake Arenal offers retirement paradise
Lake Arenal is a paradise destination in Costa Rica where expats from around the world call home. On the east side sits famous Volcano Arenal and the tourist town of La Fortuna where partiers frolic fanatically seeking satisfaction. The town has much to offer and is becoming quite the booming tourism destination in Costa Rica.
The northwest side of Lake Arenal has a large and growing expat community who flock to the many turn key secure communities offered by real estate developers. Two gated communities have reduced their prices and are offering outstanding financing options with only 20% down.
Arenal Estates sits above La Union just 10 minutes east from the active town of Nuevo Arenal and offers commanding views of Arenal Lake, Volcano Arenal and some parcels even have river frontage. Prices have been reduced, this real estate in Arenal won’t last long.
Further west, past the town of Arenal, on the road to Tilaran, lies the lake front gated community of Turtle Cove offering lake access and boat dock, 24 hour security, with all utilities underground, paved roads, outstanding views, and central location. Turtle Cove Lake Club has ten homes completed, some available as rental homes. This lake front real estate in Costa Rica has great prices and provides outstanding developer financing too.
Lake Arenal offers superb climate, shopping, dining, nature and water activities. It is a perfect vacation and retirement destination in Costa Rica.
Costa Rica is a beautiful and unique tropical paradise which offers inexpensive living and retirement, the opportunity to start over, the chance to learn Spanish, gentle breezes, lots of great outdoor sports, stunning scenery with sun-soaked shores and beautiful beaches and spectacular mountains.
Add to all this a peaceful nation with political stability and year round spring-like weather in the Central Valley and summer at the Pacific, the friendly people who actually like Canadians, Americans or Europeans and it is easy to see why Costa Rica has become tops on the list of expatriate and Baby Boomer havens.
Reasons to Live or Invest in Costa Rica:
• Year-round spring-like weather in the Central Valley or summer at the Pacific
• Untarnished international image. How often do you hear bad things in the news about Costa Rica? Only good news!
• Latin America’s oldest democracy
• No army and No terrorism. Costa Rica has No enemies.
• Excellent health care at a fraction of the price you pay at home
• Good real estate investments. Costa Rica is considered one of the world’s best emerging real estate markets
• More Americans and Canadian residents proportionately than any country in the world
• A tightly-knit expatriate community
• Costa Rica named World Bio Gem
• Costa Rica is the safest country in Latin America
• Time-tested organizations in place to help you with everything you need to know to make the move from A to Z
• Excellent quality of life!
• Good communications with high-speed internet in many areas
• Tax savings!
• Opportunities for entrepreneurs of all ages
• Utilities are affordable!
• Friendly people!!
• Many people who speak English
• Lots and Lots of activities to stay busy and happy
• A nature lover’s paradise!
• Affordable hired help
• The beauty of the country
• Fantastic beaches and warm water
• Latin America’s #1 tourist destination
• Fruits and vegetables all year
• Good public transportation