A Look At The Central Valley Of Costa Rica
The 75% of the population of Costa Rica probably calls the Central Valley home and don’t be confused some people may say they live in San Jose but really are outside of San Jose in one of the surrounding cities or towns.
Some of the reasons people choose to live in the Central Valley are:
- Climate, which is ideal depending on the altitude that you live the temperature may range from the mid 60’s in the evening to the mid 80’s during the day.
- Services available such as medical care, major shopping malls, all the latest movies (at a fraction of the cost in the U.S.).
- Employment or self-employment opportunities are more plentiful.
- Close to many sightseeing opportunities and depending on where you live in the Central Valley less than an hour to the beach.
- Places to live are plentiful and at a reasonable price.
There are many cities and towns in the Central Valley far to many to list but here is a short list:
- San Jose – This is the largest city in Costa Rica and a good place to live if you wish to live in a cosmopolitan city with a number of upscale neighborhoods, restaurants, cafes, and a variety of universities.
- Moravia – This is a suburb of San Jose and would be for those who want to be close to the activities of San Jose but want things with more of a small town feel. There is a large modern shopping mall here and many restaurants.
- Escazu – I like to call this the business capital of Costa Rica. There are modern shopping malls here, many popular restaurants, movie theaters, many great residentials to live in, state of the art healthcare. Escazu is just 7 kilometers west of San Jose and has the largest number of expatriates living there.
- Santa Ana – If you are looking to still be convenient to San Jose this town is just about 5 minutes by car west of Escazu. The downtown area of Santa Ana has kept that old town charm yet with all the modern conveniences nearby and some very exclusive residential neighborhood.
- Ciudad Colon – If you still want to be convenient to San Jose but want to be in a small town then this is a great place for you. This is a growing area though but for the shopping malls, movie theaters, etc you would need to go to Escazu about 15 minutes east.
- Alajuela – This is where the international airport is that services the San Jose area and the Central Valley. Alajuela is about 20 kilometers northwest of San Jose, here you will find many typical Costa Rican neighborhoods with housing at a reasonable price.
- Curridabat – This city is a suburb to the east of San Jose with many reasonably priced places to live as well as many restaurants, shopping malls, and movie theaters.
- Heredia – The city of Heredia is between San Jose and Alajuela and has all types of services nearby. This city has many places to live and immerse yourself in the Costa Rican culture.
- Cartago – This was the first capital of Costa Rica and this city has a colonial feel to it. There are also many restaurants and a couple of shopping malls.
- Puriscal – This is a rural community, if you are looking for a quiet place to live this is it, although there is a growing number of expatriates living here. This is a great place to immerse yourself in the Costa Rica culture and only about 45 minutes for San Jose.
- Naranjo – This is a farming town and they grow lots of coffee here. If you are looking for a peaceful place to live at a slower pace this may be the place for you.
- Grecia – This small town has its own charm and is a relaxed farming community with a laid-back feel to it. This is a great place to live and immerse yourself into the Costa Rica culture.
The list could go on, all these locations have their special features and have something to offer. My suggestion is if you are thinking of moving to Costa Rica would be come visit for a few months and spend some time in the different cities or towns to see if they are appealing to you.
If you have any questions feel free to contact us and we can help you to find a place to buy or rent in Costa Rica’s Central Valley.