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Costa Rica - Costa Rica Highlights:
San Jose, Mountains, Tropical rainforest reserves
Alternative Port:  Caldera   Golfito   Puntarenas   Quepos   - click for cruises that visit this port.

Costa Rica is located on the Central American isthmus and is bounded on the north by Nicaragua, the Southeast by Panama, the east by the Atlantic Ocean and the west by the Pacific Ocean. With its tall mountains, forested slopes, green pasture lands and lush vegetation, Costa Rica is often referred to as the "Switzerland of Central America." Rumors of vast gold treasures (which never materialized ) led to the country's name - "Rich Coast."

A mountainous country, Costa Rica ranges from sea level to peaks as high as 13,000 feet and a succession of white, sandy beaches follow one another along the Pacific Coast. Its capital, San Jose is located in the mountains but the main ports for cruises vsiting Costa Rica are Caldera, Golfito, Corcovado, Puntarenas and Quepos on the Pacific coast and Limon on the Caribbean coast.

Though smaller than Ireland, Costa Rica boasts an amazing biodiversity. With more butterfly species than the whole of Africa, more bird species than Europe, its precious tropical rainforests harbour over half a million plant and animial species. Small wonder that about a quarter of Costa Rica is protected nature reserve or national Park like Corcovado, Curu and Manuel Antonio.

Among the first inhabitants of Costa Rica were the Guymi Indians, who greeted Columbus when he arrived in 1502. The area was colonized by Spain in 1506, but the Indians successfully forced them off their land. Several additional failed attempts by the Spanish to colonize Costa Rica followed until 1563 when Spanish governor Juan Vasquez de Coronado arrived. Costa Rica's independence was established in 1821, and the coffee trade flourished.

There are no cruises currently listed for this port of call.


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