San Jose : Costa rica


What It Is Like to Retire in San Jose

Costa Rica is a land of rain forests, volcanos, wildlife refugees and beautiful beaches which makes it a popular international tourist destination.  San Jose is the capital city and the largest city in Costa Rica, and with a population of about 288,000, is home to over a third of the country's population. Located in the center of Costa Rica, San Jose is the epicenter of government, economic activity, cultural events and is the major transportation and education hub of Costa Rica. The modern city offers art and architecture, historic neighborhoods, museums, markets, universities, and has become a popular tourist destination.



Where to Retire in San Jose and Home Prices

San José is divided into 11 districts which are made up of several neighborhoods where home prices will vary. American expatriates are scattered throughout Costa Rica, most of them live in the suburbs surrounding San Jose such as Escazu an upscale area of the city, or Santa Ana which is a trendy community near the medical centers, luxury hotels, and Costa Rica's largest mall.  Cuidad Colon, another popular suburb offers beautiful countryside.  Townhouses, condos, and single family homes are all offered, with prices starting in the low $100's. 


What Is Special about San Jose

San Jose has many museums, a historic district, several universities, a public bus system which makes getting around the city easy, and universal health care.  The cost of living is not high, and temperatures stay in the 70's year-round. Rain forests, rivers, wildlife refugees and beautiful beaches are a few hours away and offer a variety of activities including kayaking, sport fishing, surfing, and all types of outdoor adventures.


What Is Not Special about San Jose

San Jose is not considered a very pretty town and deals with a lot of traffic with no emission controls; the crime rate is higher than the national average.


Who Will Like Retirement in San Jose

Retirees who want to live in a city with transportation, universities, all types of health care and universal insurance may enjoy living here.


Local Economy Is Driven by

San Jose has a diverse economy which is driven by industry, agriculture that includes bananas, coffee and pineapple, construction and tourism.


Climate and Physical Environment

The average temperature in San Jose is about 71 degrees.  Because of its elevation (3,839 feet), San Jose has a pleasant temperature year-round. 


Restaurants & Cultural Scene

San Jose is the country's only major urban center and has many choices of restaurants. The popular Costa Rican cuisine includes gallo pinto, the national dish which is a mixture of fried rice and black beans. Culturally, the town has plenty to offer with a nightlife scene and beautiful theaters that host musical and artistic presentations. Museums like the Jade Museum display Costa Rican history and art going back to pre-Columbian times. San Jose also has many parks, plazas, and casinos, along with historic neighborhoods that feature colonial mansions that are now art galleries and restaurants.



The crime rate is above Costa Rica's national average, with most incidents involving theft.


Medical Facilities

Costa Rica has a public health insurance system available to all residents, with medical care and small clinics located in most communities. The health care system and hospitals have been rated high on an international level. San Jose has four hospitals.



San Jose has an airport, trains, and public bus transportation. Uber and Lyft drivers are available.


Valuable Links

wikipedia on San Jose


What people are saying about San Jose

No Comments

Leave a Comment

To comment you must be a registered member of

Login Here


Create Your Free Membership Account

Suggest a community we want to know about your top retirement spots
Please note that all contributions to Topretirements may be edited, altered, or removed by other contributors. If you don't want your writing to be edited mercilessly, then don't submit it here. By submitting content and/or photographs here you agree to give the rights to use them in any manner without cost or attribution.You are also promising us that you wrote this yourself, or copied it from a public domain or similar free resource (see Project:Copyrights for details). DO NOT SUBMIT COPYRIGHTED WORK WITHOUT PERMISSION!

Copyright © 2006-2022 All Rights Reserved.