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An introduction to the geography and culture of costa rica

Another large structural valley, the Valle del General, lies at the base of the Cordillera de Talamanca in the southern part of the country. To the north and east of the mountainous central spine lie the Caribbean lowlands, constituting about one-fifth of the country and reaching less than 400 feet 120 metres in elevation.

Climate Thermal convection and onshore breezes bring abundant rains to the Pacific coast in the wet season, generally May to October in the north and April to December in the south. The higher mountain ranges have warm temperate climates, and the Pacific slopes have alternating wet and dry seasons.

Costa Rica

Average monthly rainfall there ranges from well under 1 inch 25 mm in February to more than 12 inches 300 mm in September, with a yearly average of more than 70 inches 1,800 mm. Temperatures vary with elevation. On the Talamanca range grow numerous evergreen oaks and, above the timberline, mountain scrub and grasses. The northwest, with the longest dry season, contains open deciduous forest.

  • Many upper-class families are descended from a few Spanish conquistadores;
  • The Catholic heritage remains important in everyday language and culture;
  • Many upper-class families are descended from a few Spanish conquistadores.

Palm trees are common on the Caribbean coastline, and mangroves grow on the shallow protected shores of the Nicoya and Dulce gulfs along the Pacific. Mosses, orchid s, and other tropical plants are abundant. Displayed by permission of The Regents of the University of California.

  • Nonetheless, in 1999, the United Nations ranked Costa Rica fourth among developing nations worldwide that have made progress in eliminating severe poverty;
  • Moreover, Costa Rica took in lots of refugees from a range of other Latin American countries fleeing civil wars and dictatorships during the 1970s and 80s — notably from El Salvador , Chile , Argentina , Cuba and recently from Venezuela;
  • Costa Rica became a transshipment point for Colombian cocaine bound for the United States;
  • Medicine and law are undergraduate careers.

Mammalian life is both abundant and varied and has major ties to South and North American populations. The South American species include monkeys, anteater s, and sloth s, and the North American species include deer, wildcats, weasels, otters, coyotes, and foxes.

Culture of Costa Rica

There is a wide variety of tropical birds in the lowlands, and reptiles, such as snakes and iguanas, and frogs are common.

Blue poison dart frog DendrobatesCosta Rica.

  • The economy diversified after 1950, and new groups emerged;
  • Food Customs at Ceremonial Occasions;
  • In the 1940s, the Church was involved in social reform;
  • Poor children often help with chores at an early age.

The descendants of workers brought from the West Indies mainly from Jamaica in the 19th century to build the Atlantic Railroad and work on banana plantations, they were the targets of racism, and for many years residence laws restricted them to the Caribbean coast.

Because of these circumstances, the black community remains isolated from the national culture and faces many economic and social barriers. There is a small Chinese population, many of whom are also the descendants of imported labourers.

Culture Name

The Chinese community has its own social clubs, although it has assimilated into mainstream culture. Many Costa Ricans of Chinese descent own businesses in the retail and hospitality industries. Although estimates indicate that about 400,000 indigenous people lived in what is now Costa Rica before the Spanish conquest, that number was drastically reduced by the conquest itself, disease, and slave-raiding expeditions. A small number of Guatuso reside on the northern plains in Alajuela province.

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