“Pura Vida”

In August of 2007, I had my first backpacking experience through Costa Rica. That was the trip which decided my fate that I’d live my life happiest as a grungy globe backpacker & hostel hopper.

Costa Rica ranks top 5 in the world for being the most Environmentally friendly, 95% in Literacy rate (high among the Latin American countries), first country to abolish it’s army and is striving to become the first country to be Carbon Neutral. It is a relatively safe country for female travelers, an extremely peaceful country. Why would anyone have mental issues living in such a beautiful country? Tourism has been Costa Rica’s main source of income, along with their crops: pineapple, coffee and bananas.

I went with my girlfriends Teresa, Paola & LeeAnn to visit Christina, who had been working there all summer for ISV (International Student Volunteers). We visited her on her break and was so fortunate to have her take us around.

“Pura Vida” is the unofficial Costa Rican saying, which one uses to greet hello, goodbye, to simply state that life is good. It translates to ‘The Pure Life”. I guarantee after coming home from Costa Rica, you will be saying it for months, and won’t be able to hide a smile while saying it 🙂

Sleep: Hostels cost no more than $5 a night and ranges from shared rooms of 4-8, some unisex.

Flight: TACA airline for a little less than $500.

And I spent about 500$ comfortably there.

Food/Drinks: Rice, black beans, chicken or beef.
Imperial is the most popular beer. “Cuba Libre” is rum & coke in a can that you will see everywhere.

Currency: 550 to $1

Visa: If you are staying 30 days or less, you don’t need one.

Things you need to pack:
–Rain Jacket *you can pick it up at Target for 5$
–Bug Spray *Dont worry, everyone wears it so you wont stand out, or seem less sexy
–Running/Hiking shoes
–BATHING SUIT of course!!
–2 Towels *1 for showering, 1 for the beach
–If you plan to do cheap hosteling, bring a bed sheet, and pillow cover to put over these beds
–A Journal

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