Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Good to know...

If you’re one of our lucky venturers or PM’s (project managers) heading over to sunny Costa Rica in the next few weeks (or just an interested blog fan!) then you are going to need to know a little bit about the place. Here are just a few interesting/funny facts to get you started and prepare you for what’s to come. Don’t worry, we’re not here to scare you. In fact, this leads me smoothly on to my on to my first point…
Beautiful sunsets - Costa Rica is full of them
Statistics show that Costa Rica is the happiest country in the world – brilliant! So no need to panic. Storming ahead of rival countries in categories such as life expectancy, life satisfaction and ecological footprint, it seems that Costa Rica is the number one place to live in the world… which can’t be a bad place to be spending the next few months of your life! This is closely followed by the Dominican Republc, Jamaica, Guatemala, Vietnam, Columbia, El Salvador, Brazil and Honduras to round up the top ten. (We’re unsure of where the UK is ranked… but let’s not dwell on that).

Costa Ricans, or ‘Tico’s’ as they are known here, are fun, friendly and full of vitality. Through a combination of sun, sea, sand and an innate passion for life it isn’t hard to see why. (They also abolished their army years ago; a clear indication of their morals and beliefs). There is a local philosophy which plays a large part in the Costa Rican lifestyle; "Pura Vida!”, which literally means ‘pure life’. The Ticos use the expression daily, reinforcing what is important in life.

Now for some geography! Costa rica is situated in Central America; below Nicaragua and above Panama. It is approx. 51,000 square km and it’s capital is San Jose. Other major cities within the country include Alajuela, Cartago, Heredia, Puntarenas, Limon, and Liberia.

Population - Approx. 4,578,945

History - Costa Rica was founded in 1502 by Christopher Columbus, where he optimistically named the country ‘Rich Coast’.

Climate - Hot, hot, hot for the majority of the year. The dry season runs from January through May and the rainy season from May to November and December (top tip: pack your waterproofs just in case). The average annual temperature for most of the country lies between 21.7°C (71°F) and 27°C (81°F). The coolest months are from November through January, and the warmest from March through May.

Now, for those of you lacking in the Spanish speaking department here are a few basic words and phrases that might come in handy...

The very basic:
Hola - Hello, Adios - Goodbye, Gracias – Thank you, Por favour - Please

Buenos Dias – Good morning!

Hasta luego – See you later

¿Cómo estas? – How are you?

¡Estupendo! - Fantastic!

Mucho gusto – Pleased to meet you

Con mucho gusto – You’re welcome

The Raleigh essentials:
¿Donde esta la jungla?? - Where is the jungle??

Estoy aqui con Raleigh - I am here with Raleigh

Una Carpa - Tent

Una Brujula - Compass

El destornillador es debajo el balde - The screwdriver is behind the bucket.

Pasame la pala – Pass me the shovel (You will use this a lot)

Querría algunos más Pork & Beans – I would like some more Pork & Beans (One of the finer meals amongst the Raleigh rations... You'll see what I mean).

Debo lavar – I need to/must wash (This will be a common thought on expedition)

Es trabajo muy duro, pero me gusta - It's hard work, but I like it (That's the spirit!)

¡Recuerde su bloqueador solar y repelente! - Remember your sun cream and bug spray!

¡Adoro Raleigh! – I love Raleigh!

¡Vamos! – Lets go!

¡Wejepa! – waheeyyyy!

That lot should get you through the first few days at least.

*Blog written by Dawn Tennant unless stated otherwise. Photo’s by unknown.


  1. I love this blog Dawn! haha Keep on with the Spanish!

    K. x

  2. Hola,
    Just to wish you guys (in particular for Marga) a wonderful time with good fun, good sun and good work! Enjoy "la pura vida"!! :)

  3. Para sabrina!

    Buenos buenos buenos, buenos buenos dias.
    Buenos buenos buenos, buenos buenos dias.!!!

  4. to andres, mae HOLA xq si ralis hace por dos veces vienes y te vas mas de las que te supones ibas entonces caga rios disfruta agua vive comida y come rico avena vienes con agua y leche cafe tomas y canela a la avena no tienes y gustas de cheles pellejos aunque apenas bueno rali estas. bueno chao




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