Culture in Costa Rica seduces many tourists into staying permanently, and the ranks of expats that settle in this wonderful country grow each year. What is so special about the culture of Costa Rica?
The “ticos”, as Costa Ricans are affectionately called, have a beloved saying: “Pura Vida”, meaning pure life. This saying expresses the essence of Costa Rica culture: used as a greeting, question, answer and qualifier, “pura vida” means good, great, feeling relaxed and happy. The culture of Costa Rica is all about feeling good and making others feel good too.
Because of its particular history, Costa Rica culture has always been an inclusive, homogeneous one – there is not a stark difference between social classes, and all Ticos to a man enjoy similar pastimes (soccer, horse shows, dancing, going to the beach), foods (chicharrones, casados, empanadas) and drinks (Imperial beer and Cacique schnapps). The culture of Costa Rica is easy going and relaxed, which in the business world may translate in lateness, commitments not being kept and deadlines being thoroughly ignored – but hey, “pura vida, man”, this is Costa Rica culture! Chill and enjoy yourself!
Here are some basic points to keep in mind when trying to immerse yourself in Costa Rican culture: