I first came to Costa Rica over two years ago to use my Environmental Science degree and work for Turtle Trax, a sea turtle conservation organization based in Playa San Miguel. I have been working here seasonally ever since.
I fell in love with this country. It is small but so diverse and beautiful. I truly feel that anyone can find happiness in Costa Rica, and there is something for everyone. There are cities, mountains, and beaches, and you can visit all three in the same day. Costa Rica is especially attractive to conservationists like myself, because nature and wildlife have been beautifully preserved in Costa Rica. About twenty-five percent of Costa Rica’s land mass is national preserve, so there is so much natural beauty to explore.
I live in Liberia, one of the major cities in Costa Rica, but the best part is that I can easily take a bus to one of the countless beautiful beaches in the Guanacaste Province for the weekend. I can even take a bus to the beach on a day when I don’t have a lot of classes: the closest one is only 45 minutes away.
The food in Costa Rica is amazing. It is simple but so good. Local produce is sold in stands and trucks everywhere and is relatively cheap. My favorite fruit is pineapple, one of the most expensive fruits to buy in the United States. Here however, you can buy a Pineapples for less than a dollar.
Overall, my favorite part of Costa Rica is the culture and people. Ticos are friendly, laid back people who truly live the “Pura Vida” lifestyle.
This blog was contributed by Nicole Chiarelli, an English teacher at Instituto Estelar Bilingüe in Liberia, Costa Rica.