• Ron Snell

10 Reasons to Avoid Southern Costa Rica's Pacific Coast

See that guy's face? He's miserable.

1. The climate in southern Costa Rica is boring. Daytime highs in the mid to upper 80’s, evening lows in the upper 60’s. Every day. All year, with mild winds off the ocean or mountains. Let’s face it: blizzards and tornados and ice on the roads are a bit of a bother, but at least they aren’t boring.

2. Most of the Ticos are trim and good looking. You get tired of always being around people who are trim and good looking. It makes you want to be trim and good looking too. It makes you want to eat healthier food and exercise more, and that certainly gets old after a few months.

3. Ticos are too polite and laid back. When you’re having a bad day, you really don’t want people to be polite and laid back. It’s like they’re trying to capture the moral high ground when you are feeling most vulnerable, daring you to settle down and be a bit more ‘tranquilo’. Grrrrrr…that word can be so annoying. Like Pura Vida. W-h-a-t?!!!

4. There are too many nice beaches. Economists say that fewer choices make it easier to choose. We’re not sure why it takes an economist to say that, but the point is that if you have more choices, you are less likely to select any of them. So you come to southern Costa Rica for the beaches and then sit in your hotel room because you can’t decide. Bummer, and we don’t mean beach bummer.

5. They speak Spanish here. Of all the nerve. You took three years of high school Spanish, but NO ONE actually expected you to have to use it anywhere. It’s beside the point that many Ticos speak English and are more than happy to help you out. If they want to be players in the global economy, why don’t they just switch to English? They could still speak Spanish back in the rural villages and everyone will be happy. And that business about practicing your Spanish with friendly people who encourage you with smiles? So over rated.

6. The wildlife has no respect. 5 AM and all you want to do is sleep in. But no—a dozen parrots are in a tree right outside your window screaming at each other, howler monkeys are social networking with distant friends, frogs are mimicking 2-note tuba players, insects are making all kinds or raucous sexual advances. Sometimes, nature is far too natural. My gosh, you have to be in bed by 8:30 to get a decent night's sleep.

7. If you buy a little extra fruit, it always goes bad before you can eat it. Tree ripened fruit is the pits. Sure it’s got a ton of flavor, and sure it’s as good for you as anything on earth, but sometimes you just want the bananas to sit on the counter for a couple of weeks while they ripen. Why, in a country where the pace of life is so slow, does the fruit have to be eaten so fast?

8. The ocean is warm. You get no bragging rights for swimming in a warm ocean. Polar Bear clubs leave people shaking their heads in admiration, but no one admires a swimmer in southern Costa Rica. It seems so logical and natural to swim in a warm ocean that you have to do other things to stand out in the crowd. Like maybe NOT swim, which will leave people shaking their heads, even if not in admiration.

9. The scenery is breathtaking. Lush green mountains rise behind the beaches. Cottony clouds scuttle across deep valleys. The Pacific Ocean changes color faster than the chameleons, reflecting sky hues like a mirror. It’s exhausting having your breath taken away so often. Sometimes you just want to sit in a dark room and breathe normally, like you do back home.

10. We live and work here. You may think that’s a plus for a real estate agency, but only because you don’t know us that well. We can be really annoying. Get us talking about southern Costa Rica and you can’t get us stopped. Ask us rhetorical questions and we actually answer them. Come in for a cup of coffee and we may end up talking about how a mature colony of leaf cutter ants eats as much in a day as a cow, or about why the Costa Rican government banned recreational hunting, or about why Belgium didn’t have a federal government for two years, or about almost anything else in the known universe because we are annoyingly interested in the known universe. Your coffee will be long gone and still you will be here telling us about your known universe, because we are incurably interested in it, too.

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