This is The Real Costa Rica  by Ticogrande

Hi... My name is Tim, and I have lived in Costa Rica (near San José) for many years. 

I love just about everything about this country, but for sure, it is not for everyone... at least not without some preparation! 

What I do not like is the incredible amount of wrong information about this country. I don't like how hard it is to find a single and accurate source of information about Costa Rica.  While there are other web sites that claim to give you this information... they don't.  In fact, several are owned and maintained by people who don't even live here. I am not sure how you can tell anyone about a place you only visit once a year. Many try to sell you on Costa Rica. I do not. I give you the real information you need.

In fact, I just heard recently that someone is now selling a DVD with maybe ten interviews with people living here and just loving it. THEN I found out that EIGHT of those interviews are actually with real estate agents! I can just imagine how accurate THOSE interviews would be.

I have heard things like:

  • "Don't drink the water in Costa Rica.",
  • "You need to take typhoid shots or malaria pills to avoid getting sick.", 
  • "Malaria is rampant!"
  • "Stay off the streets, the crime is awful!",
  • "Costa Rican food sucks!",
  • "It's easy to drive anywhere in Costa Rica, the roads are great!"

on and on ad nauseam!  An incredible amount of this stuff is simply nonsense.  Some is not!

Therefore, I decided to build this web site to clarify just exactly what is The Real Costa Rica.  Here you will find the accurate answers to hundreds of questions about Costa Rica. The nice thing is that there are even answers to the questions you did not know to ask!  It contains articles, statistics, photographs, movie clips, tables and charts, and above all, correct information about Costa Rica. Many hundreds of hours have gone into developing this web site, and I (modestly) believe you will find no other complete source for 100% accurate information on Costa Rica.

One of the beautiful varieties of Flowers in Costa RicaWho should read this site?

This site is for anyone who wants to visit, work, live in, learn about, or retire in Costa Rica. In fact, I just added a new page on Retiring in Costa Rica.

For you others thinking about living here, here is an important statistic.  Over 60% of those who move to Costa Rica leave within one year!  Why?  There are a lot of reasons, but my hunch is that people were just not prepared for the REAL Costa Rica There is a vast difference between the "tourist" Costa Rica and the one in which you will live. 

Tourists and Visitors

Costa Rica is a great place to visit. Whether you want to surf, enjoy nature, lay in the sun, scuba dive, climb a mountain, take a bike tour... makes no diff! Costa Rica is for you. Is it safe? Sure, but of course use the same precautions you would visiting any tourist spot... like Chicago!

Just place your mouse over any menu item like menu: "Travel in Costa Rica" (above left) and select the topic you want to read. It is guaranteed to make your trip more enjoyable and avoid any unpleasant surprises.

The Blog - Real Important!

Also be SURE to visit The REAL Costa Rica Blog as it contains a diary of what really goes on here.  It contains recent happenings in Costa Rica plus my thoughts and commentary and just about anything else that needs to be said about Costa Rica. 

New stuff will appear in the Blog first, then will be added to this web site as time permits. Stuff DOES change and that is why the Blog is important.


My Personal Tours

So many people are considering a move to Costa Rica and simply cannot afford to make a costly mistake by moving here and then leave a few months later because they were simply not prepared for life here. With that in mind, I now offer my personal services on a limited basis to take you around and teach you face to face the most important and critical facets of living of Costa Rica. My tours are designed to make sure you will NOT to be part of that 55-60% of people who leave the first year.  Costa Rica is not perfect and any Tico (Costa Rican) would agree.  However, if you intend to live here, it must be perfect for you. It is for me! More info on the tours can be found here. I have written one page on retiring or relocating to Costa Rica and it can be found here.



For current news in Costa Rica, check out our live news feeds for Costa Rica, Central America, Headline Sports, and The World. Feeds are updated every second.

Also, take a peek at Odds and Ends, containing some of the goofy but endearing things about Costa Rica. Also part of this web site is Costa Rica Eateries, a forum that you can join (free) to see what are the hot spots to get a good meal at a reasonable price. Live or visited here? Post your restaurant review and share the joy!

So welcome to the REAL Costa Rica.  I do hope you enjoy the visit!  When you finish, share your thoughts in our guest book and tell me and others what you think.



Finally... At the bottom of a few pages are "Last Reviewed/Modified" dates. This was one of my dumber ideas as really, much of the data in this web site, weather, roads, travel info, etc really does not change. I am in the process of removing those dates, but be assured I DO review all pages that might have new info to make sure that they are current.




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