Where should I begin? The Happy Monkeys just returned from12 days in Costa Rica engaging in the culture, exploring the incredible biodiversity, learning, giving back and of course taking time to relax, laugh and enjoy the beautiful country. From Volcanoes to sea life, English to Spanish and acting out what couldn’t be communicated in words, zipping through the trees, paddling with the dolphins, waking to howler monkeys, dancing on the beach and most of all embracing the Pura Vida lifestyle, Costa Rica was simply amazing.
I was fortunate enough to go on a family trip to Costa Rica a year ago and I dreamed of sharing this beautiful country with the Happy Monkeys. The main reason is that Costa Rica lifestyle reflects the 5 pillars of HMC so closely, plus it’s 32c in January! Seven of you trusted in what I would put together and with the amazing Costa Rican hosts, this will truly be a trip to remember.
So what makes Costa Rica so special?
Could it be the biodiversity of the country, the numerous volcanoes, dry forests, cloud forests, rain forests, beautiful sand beaches, sunsets, City life in San Jose and quiet beach life in Playa Hermosa, breakfast with monkeys overhead, early morning sunrise and sun and heat in January?
All of those are pretty awesome but what truly sets Costa Rica apart for me is the people and the Pura Vida attitude that we were exposed to each and every day. The positive vibe, the greetings from strangers, the smiles and welcoming nature of everyone we met made us all feel so comfortable and a part of their community. Life is simple in Costa Rica, the attitude is positive with anything being possible. I absolutely understand why Costa Rica is one of the happiest places on earth. Thank you to everyone we met who made us feel your beautiful positive vibe and made us feel a part of your community if only for a short 12 days.
When they say like minded people attract each other. I am proud to be Canadian and feel this incredible connection to the Costa Rican people. I do believe both countries have similar values. However, we still are very different. We can both learn so much from each other to grow and be better global citizens. I look forward to continuing that journey.
HMC 2019 Costa Rican adventure is in the works. I invite you all to come and experience this treasure of a country on a level that is a a little deeper than a holiday allows. You will come home with a new outlook on life that is relaxed, positive and loving. If you want to be notified directly when the 2019 dates and itinerary is available please click here.
Fun Facts about Costa Rica
1. Costa Ricans call themselves Ticos and Ticas.
2. Costa Rica is slightly smaller than Lake Michigan.
3. There are 800 miles of coastline, both on the Atlantic and Pacific.
4. Costa Rica border Nicaragua to the north and Panama to the south.
5. It only takes up .03% of planet’s surface but holds 5% of its biodiversity!
6. There are over 130 species of fish, 220 of reptiles, 1,000 butterflies (10% of the world’s butterflys are in Costa Rica!), 9,000 plants, 20,000 species of spiders and 34,000 species of insects! )
7. More than 25% of Costa Rican land is protected national parks and refuges.
8. They don’t really have summers and winters like Canada, but a dry season that runs December-April and a rainy season that runs May-November.
9. The average life expectancy of 77 years is one of the highest in the world.
10. Costa Rica has no standing army. It was constitutionally abolished in 1949.
11. They claim a 96% literacy rate. In very poor and rural areas, where children can’t get to schools, they teach classes over a national radio station.
12. When a woman is pregnant they say she is “con luz,” or “with light.”
13. A saying I love is that when someone is your significant other, your other half, they are your “media naranja,” or the other half of your orange.
14. “Pura vida” is the national saying, which means “pure life,” a sunny, feel good expression used as a greeting, goodbye, or if someone asks how you are doing.
15. The average Tico makes $6,000 a year and the average wage labor is $10 per day, the highest in Central America.
16. Costa Rica is aiming to be carbon neutral by 2012.
17. Costa Rica is a Catholic country but ensures freedom of religion.
18. Costa Rica is the longest-standing democracy in Central America.