When we think of Costa Rica what comes to our mind at least mine is lush green rainforests, abundance of wildlife, and oceans on both sides of this tiny country. With hot temperatures all year round along the coast and comfortable cooler weather in the mountains it’s easy to pursue healthy lifestyles in Costa Rica.
Since 1502 when Christopher Columbus discovered Costa Rica and named it the “Rich Coast” people have been looking to make it their home. With a current population of approximately 4.5 million people Costa Rica has being a popular destination for those seeking a more relaxing lifestyle getting away from the hustle & bustle of North America. Costa Rica continues to be on the Happy Plant Index as having the “happiest people”.
The main staple of Costa Rican meals is rice and beans however with many expats living in the country people calling this their home are turning to healthier choices of organically grown meats, vegetables & fruits.
Costa Rica is also a leader in the way of health care for Central America which now brings in revenue from Medical Tourism as well as providing health care to those people seeking more affordable care. Find out more about Medical Tourism.
Along many of the road sides are fresh fruit & vegetable stands owned by locals. Some even stay open 24 hours a day making it convenient for those travelers who wish to stock up on their way to rented villas or condos. Some of the towns will have farmer’s markets were locals sell their products to others to earn an income. If you’re a local or expat looking to save a few bucks this is the way to go.
Healthy lifestyles in Costa Rica are possible by buying & eating what’s in season making it more affordable. If you are fortunate enough to have plants or fruit trees in your yard all the better. Recently I staying with a local family and in the center of the yard was a lemon tree. Perfect to use in place of salad dressing or add flavor to your water. Behind the property was a mango tree. One of my favorite fruits to eat. There’s nothing better than the fresh taste of fruits & vegetables. Growing up on a farm you’ll know what I mean.
Yoga & surf camps
Outdoor activities are in abundance in Costa Rica. Lots of yoga retreats are located in the country especially in the northern pacific coastal area. Combine yoga & meditation for an all over well-being experience.
Yoga helps our bodies to become more flexible, build a strong foundation and balance. This leads into another activity which is also popular surfing. I find the easier it is to balance your body the easier it is to stand on a surf board and ride out the wave without falling off. Wellness getaways gives your body a chance to rejuvenate so you can return feeling more relax and alive. Below we share with our readers a few place for yoga & surfing. We are not affiliated with these companies, but like to share possible choices with you.
Finding your healthy balance with yoga
Here’s a few popular yoga resorts in Costa Rica where you can take classes or even enrolling in yoga teacher training courses.
- Blue Osa Yoga Retreat
- Anamaya Resort
- Blue Spirit Yoga
- Yoga Tamarindo
Beginner to Expert Surfing
Many of the surf camps or schools have group or private lesson. Lessons usually included equipment & rash guard.
- Bodhi Surf School
- Witch’s Rock
- Hermosa Riders Surf School
- Mal Pais Surf
- Playa Grande Surf Camp
- Del Mar Surf Camp
Ylang ylang used in Chanel #5 perfume
Getting back to plants. Did you know Costa Rica has many plants such as aloe vera? This is a natural remedy for sunburns, cuts, insect bites as well as help heal acne. Stayed out in the sun too long because you forgot to apply sunscreen reach for an aloe vera plant or stop at one of the local pharmacy for cream.
Aloe vera can also be used as hair conditioner or the gel can help with digestive problems.
Coconuts are another one of my favorites. You’ll find lots of street vendors selling Pipa Fria for about 500 colones. Feeling dehydrated try a agua de pipa (coconut water) to help quench your thirst.
Tamarindo is another popular drink to quench your thirst, I think a little acquired but tasty all the same. Don’t overdue this one as it’s also a laxative and you may find yourself visiting the washroom frequently. Tamarindo contains high levels of vitamins B & C as well as iron and calcium. You’ll find many trees in a town called Bagaces otherwise known as the “tamarindo capital”.
Quench your thirst with fresh coconut water
Noni fruit used to help fight cancer
Not everyone here drives cars or rides motorcycles, so you’ll often find many people walking, taking the bus or riding a bicycle to work or school. This is mainly because cars are so expensive as well as the gas or due to low income. This gives us more opportunity to exercise our bodies keeping us fit is the way I look at it. I actually love an early morning walk along the boulevard to meet the cruise ships.
Travel Tip: Travelers who visit Costa Rica often comment on how hot & humid it is here. That’s especially true along the coastal beaches where we live. I never leave the house without a bottle of water in my bag no matter how far I’m going to the beach or the store.
Many cyclists are taking pleasure in leisure bike rides around the countryside. I can’t think of a better way to enjoy the magnificent views. Keep in mind our roads are windy, hilly and not generally made with shoulders for riding a bike. There are plenty of safe location throughout the country to ride.
There is so many things to do & see in Costa Rica you should never get bored and the warm weather all year helps to get you outdoors to lead active lifestyles.
After a long day of cycling, zip lining or horseback riding treating yourself to a relaxing massage or soaking in a Jacuzzi might just feel like heaven. Many hotels & resorts have spa facilities with expert staff to give you the pampering you deserve. Believe me after a long trail ride in the saddle your quad muscles in your legs along with your butt with thank you. I had a massage from a local massage therapist once who not only provided me with a relaxing massage but had a wonderful skin exfoliation treatment as well at a very reasonable price.
What’s your favorite was to stay healthy? Let us know in the comments below!