Properties in Costa Rica Blog

Surfing Vacations in Costa Rica

Surfing Vacations in Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a world-class surfing destination known for its legendary surf spots up and down the long stretches of sandy white beaches that define the coastline. There are breaks here for everyone from the pros to the beginners. It’s a fantastic spot. Tamarindo, Nosara, Jaco, Playa Grande, and Nicoya Peninsula are among the many surf spots here. There are a wide variety of package and trips to be found that include much more than just surfing too. Wildlife adventure tours, zip-line tours, horseback riding, snorkeling, diving and sunset sailing are among the many outdoor activities that vacationers can enjoy when booking a trip to Costa Rica.

If you are a beginner looking for a resort type experience than Tamarindo is one of the best spots you can venture for a vacation. Here you can surf while also enjoying the finer things in life. With an abundance of four and five star resorts and golf communities, there are packages, hotels as well as vacation rentals to choose from. You can explore the culture and have plenty of fine dining and shopping opportunities in town. Playa Pavones, not far for Tamarindo, offers world-class surfing with a famous point left break where seasoned surfers can be found riding the legendary waves. Playa Tamarindo is perfect for the beginner.

If you are looking for something a little more challenging and rustic, the Nicoya Peninsula is a fantastic option. This rustic destination is popular with a younger crowd and attracts surfers from around the world. Nosara is probably home to the most consistent break in Costa Rica, Playa Guiones. Here both beginners and experts can enjoy surfing and sandy beach breaks makes it the perfect place to learn when waves are small.

Playa Grande is also located along the Nicoya Pensinsula and offers consistently great surf in Costa Rica. Bordering the Las Baluas National Park and a popular leatherback turtles nesting spot creates the perfect backdrop for a surfing vacation filled with wildlife spotting and outdoor adventure. This sleepy little surf town is the perfect alternative to vacationers wishing to avoid the crowds of Jaco and Tamarindo.

Jaco may just be one of the most popular destinations for vacationers. Nearby Playa Hermosa offers massive swells. Here pros can be found surfing. The smaller Playa Jaco is perfect for beginners. These are the breaks closest to San Jose making it the most convenient location for travelers who don’t want to have venture far once landing. The lively town of Jaco combined with excellent surfing options makes it a fun Costa Rica destination especially popular among young people.

For a real adventurous surfing vacation, you can always venture down to the Osa Peninsula where there are legendary breaks. The area was named by National Geographic, the most biologically intense place in the world. It’s just a treasure trove for the surfers who come to Costa Rica each year to get lost in the waves. Whether you are an established surfer or someone new to the sport, you can find a grove here. It is also home to many legendary breaks that surfers will spend a lifetime to master.

If you are looking for a surfing vacation, there are few places in the world that can compete with what Costa Rica offers. Here you can spend your days outdoors thriving in the ocean with plenty of opportunities to explore nature by land or sea. There are also lots of good diving spots too along the coast. Whether your brand new to surfing is a seasoned suffer, there is something here for everyone. In Costa Rica, the surf is always up.

Costa Rica Country Day School’s New Campus

Costa Rica Country Day School’s New Campus

The Country Day School is completing the final stages of the new campus. This English-language Pre-K through 12th grade school has an established reputation as one of the top Costa Rica private schools. Graduates attend an impressive list of competitive schools in both Europe and the US. The idea behind the new campus was to create a state-of-the-facility that fosters in students the desire to make the world a better place, achieve and learn.

The new campus creates a built environment that blends with the local landscape. The effect generates an intellectually stimulating that combines indoor/outdoor space to improve the overall quality of education of this great school. In addition, due to growing demand there was a real need to expand the number of school could enroll. The new campus will allow the school to expand its enrollment by 30%, which is a significant number. The school purchased 5 hectares for the new campus in the development of Hacienda Espinal, which is close to the Autopista del Sol, as well as western communities of Lindora, Santa Ana, Ciudad Colon and Escazú.

Construction of the new campus began in January, 2015 and the new campus is scheduled to be completed in August, 2016. The striking new campus works to create a pleasant atmosphere that utilizes Costa Rica’s year-round near perfect weather. The classrooms include large windows and open to outdoor environment outdoor sidewalks while surrounded by lush green landscaping and trees serve as hallways connecting the various classrooms. There are nooks throughout the campus for meeting places and plenty of outdoor places for students to gather one on one and in small groups. One of the objectives in the new design was to create an environment conducive to classroom, small group and individual learning.

The overall improvement in the learning environment will not only expand the number of students the school can admit but also improve the overall quality of the education by significantly upgrading the facilities. We know that the environment has a big impact on children’s ability to learn. Creating stimulating, inspiring, nurturing and pleasant environment makes a significant contribution to the overall quality of the school. It’s a really important factor in offering quality education. Country Day School aims to inspire students to not only achieve but also to make significant contributions to their world be it in healthcare, environment, science, technology or any other field. Upgrading the campus serves that big picture mission. The new campus is an elegant design that while utilizing technology and the latest in design works within the natural environment to create a serene environment that you want to spend time in. The new campus creates pleasant learning environment that marks a significant new chapter for this already great school.

Costa Rica’s Popular Animal Rescue Projects

Costa Rica’s Popular Animal Rescue Projects

Throughout Costa Rica there are dedicated animal rescue projects. These organizations work to ensure animals that become injured, ill or threatened are brought to safety till they can be released back into the wild or make the sanctuary their new home. Most of these nonprofits are run by dedicated teams of volunteers with many relying on the regular circulation of international volunteers. They are largely dependent on donations to continue their work, and provide a vital service to the wildlife throughout the region.

The Toucan Reserve Ranch

The Toucan Reserve Ranch was founded in 2004 to rescue toucans and other birds. Over time the reserve has expanded to include owls and other wildlife. Their main objective is to take in sick or injured animals and nurse them back to health eventually releasing them back into the wild. The ranch has a host of full-time animal residents that live on the property because they cannot survive in the wild on their own. The ranch also does research as well as education. Visitors can come here to learn about the birds and the other animals. The center is also working to establish a captive breeding program for all six species of Costa Rican toucans in order to help ensure their survival.

Territorio de Zaguates

Territorio de Zaguates is a special ranch dedicated to saving the dogs of Costa Rica who end up abandoned on the streets. Many of these dogs are abused and starving when they arrive at the ranch. Here they are taken into care and nursed back to health in this dog paradise. Once at the ranch, they spend their days playing along the hills with almost 1000 other dogs. The place utilizes the practice of the the famous Dog Whisperer, Cesar Milan to rehabilitate the dogs. Visitors are welcome at the ranch and encouraged to bring their own dogs as well as adopting more dogs or giving a kind donation. Territorio de Zaguates is a “no-kill shelter.” This non profit organization was founded by Alvaro Saumet and his wife Lya Battle, whom for The couple is committed to promoting animal welfare.

The Monkey Farm

Founded in 2013, The Monkey Farm is a relative newcomer. Created by wildlife biologists, veterinarians and permaculture experts, and a few others. This well-informed group came together to form this special place for monkey and other wildlife research, as well as to study sustainability and permaculture techniques. Committed to rescuing monkeys and local wildlife, the organization is run by dedicated volunteers from all over the world. The farm is also committed to permaculture practices and studying aquaponics systems, which use 95% less water than traditional farming practices. They also study and practice forest gardening.

Rainy Season is Approaching Costa Rica

Rainy Season is Approaching Costa Rica

Rainy season is approaching Costa Rica, which signals time to slowdown and take a break from sun filled days. Towns slows down from the seasonal tourist swell. It’s actually a great time of year to be in Costa Rica. Marking a time when you can really rest. With the afternoon showers, the green becomes even greener during the rainy season, and the weather a little cooler.

Costa Rica’s seasons are divided between the wet and dry seasons. May through November mark rainy season, and the time to kick back. January, December and November are the coolest months. A tropical country because of its close proximity to the equator, Costa Rica has no real winter, and the sun shines here throughout the year. The rainy season is a welcomed break for most people from the sun struck days.

Traveling during the rainy season also means lower prices and deeper discounts because it is less popular. People who own vacation rentals usually choose this time of year to take a break from renting their home to take advantage of the property for their own personal use. Prices can be 10% to 40% lower during the rainy season. While this time of year sees more frequent storms, for the most part, rainy season means an afternoon shower. Against the backdrop of the magical forests and mountains, it is a lovely time of year. There are still visitors but the population does not swell the way it does in December and January and then again during the spring break in March.

Expect the mornings and early afternoons to be sunny with rain hitting near the late afternoon and early evening sometimes continuing overnight. The rain brings a welcomed transitioned from the near perfect weather this country offers. There is no real summer in Costa Rica. March through May actually mark the hottest months. About 100 inches of rain fall each year with some mountainous areas getting as much as 25 feet of rainfall. It’s wet here. It’s also when the sea turtles come in to nest in large numbers, which is perhaps one of the most magical experiences you can have.

For the most part it rains at the same time everyday, making planning outdoor activities easy. Many take advantage of being outdoor in the morning and early afternoon and then returning indoors during the late afternoon. For many the lack of crowds makes this the best time to visit and take advantage of all the outdoor opportunities. Rivers run higher, the rainforest becomes a little more mystical, and the dry-forests of Guanacaste turn green and lush.

Diversity of Flora and Fauna in Costa Rica

Diversity of Flora and Fauna in Costa Rica

Costa Rica is known as one of the most biologically intense places in the world. Costa Rica means “rich coast” in Spanish, and the incredible flora and fauna support this name. Rich in natural resources, its innate beauty is impossible to deny. Home to 5% of the word’s biodiversity with over 1000 plants, Costa Rica is truly rich in life. Micro-ecosystems are throughout the country. In 1992, Costa Rica was made the headquarters of the world “Earth Council.”

A wild array of exotic, tropical flora and fauna supports the wildlife. 25% of the country is protected including 26 forests, 20 national parks, 9 forest reserves, 8 wildlife refuges, 7 wildlife sanctuaries and 1 national archaeological monument. Costa Rica has over 1,200 species of orchids and a range of wildly diverse habitats. 9,000 species of flowering plants and about 800 species of ferns grow in the region. The country has 12 different ecosystems including: tropical wetlands, primary dry forests and tidal mangrove swamps, which support a range of species, flora and fauna.

There is an abundance of rainforests throughout the country. Trees can grow up to 100 feet tall, absorbing up to 90% of the forest’s photosynthesis, while underneath through the wonders of nature, thousands of species of smaller trees sprout up. The dry forests do not contain as many plants. Here the exotic trees are short and robust. The mangrove swamps hold a variety of flora growing in the border between the land and the ocean and produce algae. These forests are essential for the preservation of species that only flourish in these unique conditions.

Costa Rica’s abundant fauna makes this one of the richest territories on the planet. 200 species of mammals, 850 species of birds, 220 species of reptiles, 200 species of amphibians and over 300,000 species of insects live in this country. Its geographic location between North and South American continents, and climate with a wide variety of habitats makes it home to so much biodiversity. Rich in bees, ants, moths, butterflies, lantern flies, and much more, Costa Rica has 1,251 species of butterflies and at least 8,000 species of moths. It is also home to the magnificent, endangered turtles: Giant leatherback, hawksbill, and loggerhead turtles also nest here.

The number one threat to species is endangered habitat followed by hunting and trapping. With an estimated 500,000 creatures throughout the country, Jaguars, Tapirs and the Squirrel Monkey are among the endangered species. The country is critical to preserving and protecting the world’s biodiversity. There rich number of wildlife preserves set aside across the country to protect endangered species throughout the country play a critical role in protecting biodiversity for the entire planet.

Peaceful Costa Rica Eco-Retreat and Income Generating Property

Peaceful Costa Rica Eco-Retreat and Income Generating Property

February 28, 2016

Properties in Costa Rica

Connect with nature and the magic of life at this peaceful retreat property. With two solar powered eco cabañas fully equipped with modern amenities, situated on top of a hill and surrounded by the ocean, mountains, valleys and a lake, this secluded retreat is the ideal refuge.

Hike along the trails of this 7-acre property, meditate or sit on the deck and enjoy the wonderful view of the countryside. Searching for a place to disconnect and get away from it all, a base for in-country exploring, a weekend getaway, a peaceful location for your studies, this property is only a three to four hour flight from most US hubs, and just a short hour and a half drive from San Jose.

The main house (75 m2 or 800 sq. ft.) has two bedrooms, one bathroom, an integrated living, dining and kitchen area that opens up onto a deck with a panoramic view. Equipped with a wood burning fireplace makes it perfect for cool nights and gast is used for both hot water and the stove. Fresh water is supplied by a nearby mountain spring. The property includes a detached garage (26 m2 or 280 sq. ft.). The second cabin (60 m2 or 650 sq. ft.) has one bedroom, one bathroom, and a small kitchen next to a small integrated living and dining area.

This one-of-a-kind retreat can also be a great vacation rental offering guests easy access to the many natural wonders of Costa Rica to explore the rich biodiversity of flora and fauna here. Bird watching, white-water river rafting; mountain bike and road cycling, horseback riding and volcano hiking are some of the activities guests can easily enjoy here. Turrialba is well-known for river rafting in the Reventazon, Pacuare and Pejiballe rivers, as well as many other eco-adventure activities.

Additional income could be generated by developing partnerships with local tourism organizations and offering guests horseback riding, bicycle tours, volcano trekking, tree-top canopy tours, snake farm, orchid nursery, sugarcane and coffee factories.

This special place offers the ideal refuge for the expat looking for a long term escape or an investment property with a lot of appeal.

Dominical Is Ready for Envision Festival 2016

Dominical Is Ready for Envision Festival 2016

February 10, 2016

Properties in Costa Rica

February 25th through February 29th, the Envision Festival will take place in Uvita just a few miles from Dominical. This large annual festival celebrates music, sustainability, holistic health and art. It’s a low-key, truly family friendly, non-commercialized event similar to the annual, infamous Burning Man festival in the in the US. It includes talented musicians, artists, yogis, natural healers, and legendary spiritual teachers.

This fantastic music festival is also an environmentally conscious event in every aspect. The founders created the event with the intent to make it sustainable. From composting toilets, using banana leaves instead of disposable plates to biodegradable shower products to stages built using sustainable materials, it’s a truly green event.

The festival holds workshops on environmental education and permaculture. The 2016 musical lineup includes several artists such as Shpongle, Beats Antique Live, M.A.N.D.Y, Elephant Revival, Akae Beka, Random RAB, and many more musicians, live artists and workshop leaders such a David Wolfe (He is also one of the world’s leading authorities on nutrition and a super food), 7 Songs, Kaypacha, Steven Brooks, Gabriel Meyer, Ali Shanti, among others.

This family-friendly event features an interactive zone where kids 12 and under can play and learn with others. Attendees describe it as a “microcosm of performance art and spiritual enlightenment.” It’s equal parts eco-conscious gathering and music festival, and well worth the trip to Costa Rica just for the event.

Costa Rica Ranks in Top 20 For Outsourcing

Costa Rica Ranks in Top 20 For Outsourcing

January 29, 2016

Properties in Costa Rica

Costa Rica ranks in the top 20 for countries to outsource work, according to a recent report from A.T. Kearney in Chicago. Costa Rica came in at number 19 gaining 5 spots since last year. The report analyzes 55 countries for outsourcing based on: financial attractiveness, people skills, availability, and business environment. The study examines outsourcing practices, and how different countries rank as targets. Given the rapid technological advancement taking place the outsourcing models and type of work that needs to be outsourced is rapidly changing.

In 2016, India, China and Malaysia were the top three offshoring destinations. The countries with the most adaptable education systems will be able to maintain their place among the top because they can easily manage to re-train their workforce to meet the changing demands of outsourced work over time. Right now the most opportunities for outsourcing are in back office operations and IT.

Over the next few years as automation and robotics come into place, work that requires repetition of the same tasks will be done by machines eliminating the need for humans to do the work. Because we can now work remotely from anywhere in the world, it is assumed that new work opportunities will emerge for outsourcing. In order for countries to remain competitive they must adapt policies that allow them to shift as needed in order to keep their citizens employed by emerging offshore opportunities.

At the moment, Costa Rica is doing a good job of building relationships with global corporations and creating jobs for people through offshoring. The country’s strong infrastructure and policies make it an easy country to do business with and in. In addition, the education system is firmly in rooted. Overall, the country is in a position to make the needed shifts to stay current. In the past few years, Costa Rica has also attracted tech companies to its shores and has a small budding start up community. With the right programs in place, Costa Rica may be able to make the needed shifts to stay ahead of the robotics revolution and continue to attract economic opportunities to its shores.

Toucan 3D Prosthetic Miracle

Toucan 3D Prosthetic Miracle

January 20, 2016

Properties in Costa Rica

The ZooAve animal rescue center in Costa Rica made medical history when they successfully implanted a Toucan with a 3D printed prosthetic saving the animal’s life. After a horrific assault on the bird a year ago that left it without most of its upper beak, it was taken to the ZooAve animal rescue center. The center raised the money for the prosthetic device based on this latest 3D printing technology to create a new beak, and ultimately save the bird’s life.

The injury did not occur in the wild but through the senseless violence of a few teenage boys. People around the world were were horrified by the malevolent attack of the defenseless creature. The injury left the bird unable to eat or stay balanced. Toucans rely on their beak to eat, mate and defend themselves in the wild. Without it, they cannot survive. Replacing the beak was a life or death matter that gained the attention and support of people around the world. The money to replace the beak was raised through a crowdfunding campaign that closed with $10,500. The attack was considered so heinous that it resulted in the creation of a Costa Rica animal cruelty bill that is now pending being passed into law.

Prosthetics are one of the medical wonders available through 3D printing that promises to usher in a new age for animals and people that suffer a loss of a limb or body part. Toucans have a beak that is lightweight and made of keratin. The designers were faced with a real challenge to design a beak that would look and feel like a comparable light weight material for the bird. It also had to be designed so it could be adjusted to match the bird’s growth over time. They also could not use chemical compounds that could possibly harm the bird either.

In the end, four Costa Rican 3D printing companies, Elementos 3D, Ewa!corps, Publicidad Web and Grupo Summerus, stepped forward to work with ZooAve in creating the beak and successfully transplanting the prosthetic onto the bird. 3D printing is able to create precise lifelike prosthetics at a quality unmatched in the past. 3D prosthetics have been used for dogs and cats up till now. The use of one on a wild animal is a big breakthrough, especially successfully replacing a beak. It’s a big medical breakthrough for veterinarians and wildlife specialists that resulted from a horrible tragedy.

1 Comment

Living in Sámara… True Pura Vida Style

Living in Sámara… True Pura Vida Style

January 16, 2016

Properties in Costa Rica

Tuning with the waves

Costa Rica is divided in 7 provinces; in which Guanacaste is the province number 5. Sámara belongs to the city of Nicoya, located in Guanacaste province with a distance of 146,644 miles (236 km) from San José.

Sámara is ruled by the main activity in the area, Surf is the reason why many tourists visit this lovely town and wake up early just to catch the best wave of the day.

Sámara from all Costa Rican towns is very eccentric, small and diverse. Unique in its own kind, merges Pura Vida lifestyle in many European and American visitors or residents… This is why, once you meet this beautiful place you can never go back again.

Access is very easy and they are several ways to get here:

If you are coming from San Jose you just need to follow the Route 1 and get to Nicoya city, onces there it is just a 45 minute drive to Samara. In total the trip from San Jose to Samara could take around 4 hours driving.

  1. If you landed in Liberia it is way easier and closer. From Liberia you need to start driving south towards Santa Cruz which is the first town you’ll find, from other keep driving south to Nicoya and you will be here pretty quickly. The time is about 1.5 hours.
  2. You could also Access through airplane that lands either in Punta Islita or Nosara, they are both 30 minutes away from Samara.
  3. If you are not driving, an other way to get here is by shuttle, there are several shuttle services from San Jose, Liberia, Arenal or any other touristic áreas. Transportation will not be an issue!

Incredible sunsets, Samara Beach.

Life Style

The sunrises between 5:15 am and 5:30 am, perfect to ride some waves, walk on the beach or just enjoy the natural surroundings, and afterwards enjoy yourself with some fresh fruit smoothie. With no plan whatsoever. Sámara is the perfect place to relax and disconnect from your regular hectic life and dedícate yourself to just discover amazing wildlife and admire the most stunning sunrises and sunsets.

There are many outdoor activities to during the day and most of them involve being close to the beach/ocean or always in touch with the nature, such as:

  • Surfing
  • Snorkeling
  • Kayak (River and Sea)
  • Fishing
  • Biking
  • Yoga
  • SUP (Stand Up Paddle)
  • Slackline
  • Hiking
  • Horseback riding
  • Traditional Cuisine Lessons
  • Dolphin Tours
  • Baby turtle Tours

Sámara Gastronomical Taste

If you’re looking for a nice place to try great local fresh food and at good prices we can recommend you the following places:

  • Soda La Perla
  • Soda Colocho
  • Miss Sheriff
  • El Ancla
  • Casa Esmeralda

If you’re more like an organic and vegetarian taste, Sámara Organics is the perfect spot, they offer: smoothies, cookies, coffee and delicious ice cream from Pura Paleta.

For those who want to experience different food options not only typical and are interested in dinner or lunch the following restaurants offer a great selection in meats:

  • El Colibrí
  • El Lagarto

And for those who just can’t get enough of Italian food the best options in Sámara are:

  • El Gusto Beach
  • Mama Gui
  • Uh La la
  • Locanda

In regards Mexican food Coco’s Place presents a very nice concept mixing Mexican food and art into its restaurant.

But if your options are a bit more getting to know a bar o just eat appetizers of Sandwiches these are the options for you:

  • La Vela Latina
  • Bar Arriba

Sámara Nightlife

For those who love just hanging out blend in and get to know people just prepare yourself for a long night since dancing starts at 12am! But there’s also relax and nice bars to visit before the main dish.

And when the night is heating up these are the best options for you:

  • Tabanuco (Reggae Nights)
  • Vela Latina (Salsa Nights)

If you decide to visit Samara keep in be prepared to enjoy real natural vibes!

Camaronal, Puente

Real Estate blog and newsCosta Rica VideosOur Facebook Account, Costa Rica Real EstateProperties in Costa Rica TwitterLinkedin ProfileCosta Rica Real Estate in Google+