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Tourist information

ABOUT COSTA RICA

COSTA RICA FACTS

Name: Republic of Costa Rica.

Location: Central America, south of Nicaragua and North of Panama.

Capital: San José.

Area: 50,660 km sq (about the size of the U.S. state of West Virginia).

Population: 5 million.

Infant mortality rate: 11.6 per 1,000 live births.

Life expectancy: 77.49 years male, 79.52 years female.

Total fertility rate: 3.11 children per woman (1993 estimate).

Principal industries: Tourism, coffee, bananas.

Ethnic divisions: White (including mestizo) 96 percent, Black 2 percent, Indian 1 percent, Chinese 1 percent.

Religions: Roman Catholic (official state religion) 95 percent. Protestant faiths are practiced, and there is a small Jewish community.

Language: Spanish (official), English spoken around Puerto Limon, in the tourism industry, and by many professionals in the Central Valley.

Religions: Roman Catholic (official state religion) 95 percent. Protestant faiths are practiced, and there is a small Jewish community.

Administrative division: Provinces: Alajuela, Cartago, Guanacaste, Heredia, Limón, Puntarenas, San José.

Legal system: Based on Spanish civil law system, judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court..

Direct election: Democratic republic with two similar centrist dominant parties National Liberation Party (PLN) and Christian Unity Party (PUSC). Elections held every four years.

Education: Free and compulsory through the end of the 9th year.

Multicolored beaches, shady and deserted, crystal blue waters, lush tropical forest, curious and wild flora and fauna, splendid and virgin uncontaminated National Parks, impetuous streams and charming rivers, virgin forests and spectacular volcanoes all within a touch of safe adventure: these are the extraordinary ingredients of the fabulous cocktail named Costa Rica.

Costa Rica represents a destination unique in the world, capable of offering, in the smallest geography territory known, the greatest amount of riches no other country has. There are many different climates and landscapes to be seen in only a few hours, Tropical Rain Forest in the Caribbean, Tropical Dry Forest in the North and Central Pacific Coast, South Pacific Tropical Rain Forest in the South Pacific, Paramo and High Mountain Cloud Forest in the Central Mountain Range that splits the country in two, bizarre Volcanic scenes and Central Valley and Sub Mountainous Forest in the Central Valley.

Rivers and estuaries, swamps and Mangroves, the Pacific only four hours from the Caribbean... the attractions are simply immense. Very few are the countries in the planet that were capable to undertake the precious actions as Costa Rica did, aimed at preserving the invaluable treasure of its natural resources.

In Costa Rica the following species find protection:

- 13000 varieties of plants (More than Canada and U.S.A together).

- 3000 species of Butterflies

- 237 species of mammals.

-848 species of birds among 383 known species of reptiles and amphibians.

The wide biodiversity, typical of the Costa Rican territory, also affects the people... In fact, people of different colors and credos live together- here - in total reciprocal respect

Such an evident tolerant inclination in the nature of Costa Ricans has turned him into an amiable, spontaneous and obliging person, friendly and self-assured, gifted with a strong national pride...Smiles are sincere in Costa Rica and a special cordiality radiates from people's faces, so difficult to be found in other places of the world.

Costa Rica is also one of the oldest Democracies of America enjoying today such political stability that earned the country the Name " The Switzerland of the Americas "Peace and perpetual neutrality are based on courageous convictions, to the extent that the country has no army, that being prohibited by its constitution.