25 Amazing Facts about Costa Rica | Amazing Facts 4U
Land & Geography
- Costa Rica is in Central America, bordered by Nicaragua on the north and Panama on the south, the Pacific Ocean on the West, and the Caribbean Sea on the East.
- Costa Rica has a population of 4.5 million. The capital is San Jose, with a metro area population of approximately 2 million. The official language is Spanish.
- There are 800 miles of coastline, both on the Atlantic and Pacific.
- Amazing fact is that it only takes up .03% of planet’s surface but holds 5% of its biodiversity!
- There are about 750,000 species of insects that live in Costa Rica, including about 20,000 different types of spiders! Also, more than 10% of the worlds butterflies live here. This exotic country also hosts over 200 species of fish and over 9,000 plants.
- More than 25% of Costa Rican land is protected national parks and refuges.
- There are more than 121 volcanic formations in Costa Rica, and seven of them are active. Poas Volcano has the second widest crater in the world and Arenal is one of the ten most active volcanoes in the world. Irazu is the tallest volcano in Costa Rica at 11,259 feet.
- Chirripo Mountain is the highest point in Costa Rica at 12,500 feet. The country’s lowest point is 790 feet below sea level in the caves of Barra Honda National Park.
- There are amazingly about 52 species of hummingbirds in Costa Rica, making Costa Rica a true hummingbird capital.
- It’s amazing that Costa Rica’s marine area reaches 580,000 Square Km, approximately 10 times larger than its land area of only 52,100 Square Km.
People Customs & Culture
- Costa Ricans call themselves Ticos (males) or Ticas (females). Natives refer to foreigners as Gringos (males)or Gringas (females). Ticos are short statured people in general.
- Less than 1% of Costa Ricans are of indigenous ancestry. 94% are of European or mestizo ethnicity. The average life expectancy of 77 years is one of the highest in the world.
- Names are confusing in Costa Rica. Ticas do not take their husband’s last name. The woman uses her full maiden name for life. No changing of national ID cards, drivers licenses, etc. She also adds her mother’s maiden name. Children take their father’s name, but add their mother’s maiden name to their full name.
- There are very few street signs in Costa Rica and even fewer addresses. Amazingly just about all addresses are in terms of a well-known building or landmark.
- In Costa Rica, it is not uncommon to give coffee to babies in their bottle with milk and to young children.
- It is common to buy wine in little paper boxes.
- Many Costa Ricans use their credit cards for everything including a candy bar, a pack of gum, etc even for a item costing 20 cents.
- Wearing shorts is considered disrespectful in public offices.
- There are Bullfights in Costa Rica, but the bull is never hurt and often, the bull wins!
- Costa Rica has been named the safest country in Latin America. In many countries, pedestrians have rights but in Costa Rica, the Spanish word for pedestrian is “Target”. So be real careful when walking around.
- Costa Rica is the longest-standing democracy in Central America.
- Amazing fact is that Costa Rica has no standing army. It was constitutionally abolished in 1949.
- Costa Rica actually provides reading lessons over public radio broadcasts.
Construction / Architecture
- Front doors of almost all commercial establishments almost always open inwards. If you are programmed to pull when entering and push when leaving plan to feel silly as you tug or push in the wrong direction.
- Nearly all Catholic Churches in Costa Rica face to the west which is very useful for directions.
By Amazing Facts 4U Team