About Costa Rica


Costa Rica map
Costa Rica is a paradise with a fantastic offer of beauty, touristic destinations, impressive beaches and incredible fauna and flora.

Here a glimps of what Costa Rica stands for ...

Geography of Costa Rica



The country is divided by a backbone of volcanoes and mountains, an extension of the Andes-Sierra Madre chain which runs along the western side of the Americas. Costa Rica has four distinct cordilleras or mountain ranges -- Guanacaste and Tilaran in the north, Central and Talamanca in the south. Costa Rica is part of the Pacific "Rim of Fire" and has seven of the isthmus's 42 active volcanoes plus dozens of dormant or extinct cones. Earth tremors and small quakes shake the country from time to time.

The country's highest point is Mt. Chirripo (3,797 meters). The capital, San Jose, and the neighboring major cities of Alajuela and Heredie lies in the middle of the Meseta Central (Central Valley). Almost two-thirds of the nation's population live in this small, fertile valley. The Pacific coastal plain is much narrower than its Caribbean counterpart. Both coasts are lined with white and black sand beaches.



Costa Rica's Climate

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Costa Rica is a tropical country which contains several distinct climatic zones. There is no winter or summer as such and most regions have a rainy season from May to November and a dry season from December to April. Annual rainfall averages 100 inches nationwide with some mountainous regions getting as much as 25 feet on exposed eastern slopes. Temperature is more a matter of elevation than location with a mean of around 72 degrees in the Central Valley, 82 degrees on the Atlantic coast and 89 degrees on the Pacific coast.





Costa Rica's Government


flag Costa RicaCosta Rica is a democratic republic. Under the 1949 constitution, all citizens are guaranteed equality before the law, the right to own property, the right of petititon and assembly, freedom of speech and the right of habeas corpus. The constitution also divides the government into independent executive, legislative and judicial branches. The executive branch is composed of the president, two vice presidents and a cabinet. The legislature is the National Assembly, composed of 57 members (diputados) elected by proportional representation. National elections are held every four years, on the first Sunday of February. Under a constitutional amendment enacted in 1969, a president may serve only one four-year term during his lifetime. Diputados also are elected for four years and may serve a second term four years after the first ends. The largest political party is the National Liberation Party (PLN). Its main rival is the more conservative Social Christian Unity Party.

Health issues and Costa Rica

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You are unlikely to encounter any serious diseases in Costa Rica. Sanitary standards are high and the health system is excellent. During the past two wet seasons there have been several outbreaks of the mosquito-borne disease dengue but so far there have been no reported cases of the more serious hemorrhaging dengue. No vaccinations are required to enter Costa Rica as epidemic diseases have been all but eradicated throughout the country. Infectious hepatitis, a serious problem throughout Central America, is reported only rarely in Costa Rica.

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