Santa Cruz : Costa rica

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What it's Like to Retire in Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz is the capital of the Costa Rican canton of the same name in Guanacaste Province. The population of the entire canton is 43,000. This typical Costa Rican rural town consist mostly of farmers, fishermen, workers, or tourist workers.The town is known within Costa Rica for its cultural heritage and many historical traditions. These traditions include the Fiesta de Semana Santa (Easter week celebration) including traditional bullfights. The town is also connected to some of the most popular beaches in Costa Rica, with buses going to these beaches almost every hour.  See our Retirement Guide to Costa Rica for more.


Where to Retire in Santa Cruz and Home Prices

There are resort communities here in Santa Cruz and nearby Santa Barbara that cater to retirees and tourists alike. (See Active Communities link at top right).

What is special about Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz is located in the tourist friendly and politically stable country of Costa Rica. The beaches are eco-scenery are first rate and costs are relatively low compared to the U.S., Canada, or Europe.

What is not special about Santa Cruz

It is hard to get to and travel anywhere is difficult in this mountainous country in Central America.  Basic conveniences one might take for granted will be hard to find.

Who will like retirement in Santa Cruz

Adventurous sorts who love the beaches, mountains, birding, and the expatriate life will like it here in Santa Cruz.

Local economy is driven by

Fishing, agriculture, and tourism drive the economy.

Climate and Physical Environment

It is warm year round in Santa Cruz, which is located on the northwest coast of Costa Rica.

Restaurants & Cultural Scene

Thanks to this being a tourist town there is a choice of restaurants, some of which are in the resorts. Bullfights and festivals (fiestas) are a staple of the local cultural scene.


Costa Rica is a developing country with many poor people, so there is crime, usually theft.  Expatriates are often the targets of opportunity. Many expats live in gated communities or have other security.


Medical facilities

Most expats say that medical care in Costa Rica is good with most specialities covered.



In general the highway system in Costa Rica is not up to North American standards.


Valuable Links

Satellite map of Santa Cruz

What people are saying about Santa Cruz

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Facts about SANTA CRUZ
  • State: CR
  • Environment: Rural,
  • City Population: 10,000-25,000
  • Median age of Population: 25-44
  • Avg Jan Temperature: 61 +
  • Avg July Temperature:
  • Median HH Income: 0-20,000
  • Average Home Price (MLS): Less than $100,000
  • Annual Property Tax on a $200,000 house: Less than 2000
  • Total Crime Index: 81-90 (low)
  • Cost of Living Index: <80 (Very low)
  • Culture Index: <80 (Very low)
  • State Sales Tax: No
  • State Income Tax: Yes
  • Name of the Guide: boomer1

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