Costa Rica

FACTS ABOUT COSTA RICA

Capital: San Jose

Population: 4,755,234
[Source: The World Factbook]

Religion: Roman Catholic 76.3%, Evangelical 13.7%, Jehovah’s Witnesses 1.3%, other Protestant 0.7%, other 4.8%, none 3.2%
[Source: The World Factbook]

Language: Spanish, English

Location: Central America, bordering both the Caribbean Sea and the North Pacific Ocean, between Nicaragua and Panama
[Source: The World Factbook]

Poverty Level: 20.3%
[Source: The World Bank]

Climate: Generally, the best time to visit Costa Rica is the dry season from December through April, which locals refer to as verano (summer). Dry season does not mean it does not rain; it just rains less (so perhaps should be called the ‘drier season’). Costa Rican schools are closed from December to February, when beach towns are busy, especially on weekends. Lodgings during Semana Santa are usually booked months ahead.

The rainy season begins in May, or invierno (winter) as it’s known locally. The tourism ministry has come up with the more attractive denomination of ‘green season’. The early months of the rainy season are actually a wonderful time to travel to Costa Rica: you can avoid the tourist bustle and lodging is slightly cheaper. During this time, however, rivers start to swell and dirt roads get muddy, making travel more challenging. Some more remote roads may not be accessible to public transportation, so always ask locally before setting out. Bring your umbrella and a little patience.
[Source: Lonely Planet]

Vaccines: The CDC recommends that travelers receive Hepatitis A and Typhoid shots. They also recommend that depending on the area you’re traveling to some should also get Hepatitis B, Marilia, Rabies and Yellow Fever vaccines.
[Source: Center for Disease Control and Prevention]

Currency: Costa Rican Colon