|Capital city||San Jose|
|Road network length||43,702 km|
|Length of highway network||119 km|
|License plate code||CR|
Costa Rica (Spanish: República de Costa Rica) is a country in North America. The country has more than 4.5 million inhabitants and is about half the size of the Netherlands. The capital is San Jose.
According to ABBREVIATIONFINDER, Costa Rica is a country in Central America, between the Pacific Ocean to the west and the Caribbean Sea to the east. The country borders Nicaragua to the north and Panama to the south. Costa Rica measures approximately 450 by 200 kilometers. Costa Rica is a mountainous country, especially the interior has higher mountain ranges. The 3,819 meter high Cerro Chirripó is the highest point in Costa Rica. There are also flatter parts, especially in the north of the country. The mountain areas are usually densely forested and inaccessible. The lower areas are often cultivated. The urban area of San Jose is centrally located in the country in the mountains at over 1,100 meters above sea level. Costa Rica has no major rivers but does have a few lakes. Costa Rica also includes the Isla del Coco, located in the Pacific Ocean more than 500 kilometers off the coast of Cost Rica.
The country has a tropical climate with high temperatures throughout the year. However, there are many microclimates due to the mountainous terrain. The average maximum temperature is between 26 and 28 °C, but is lower in the higher areas and higher in the lower areas.
The country has more than 4 million inhabitants, the majority of whom live in and around the capital San José. See Costa Rica population density. San José is the only major city in Costa Rica, it had 334,000 inhabitants in 2015, but the urban area has approximately 2 million inhabitants, almost half of all Costa Ricans live near San José. Of the 10 largest towns, 5 are suburbs of San José. The main cities outside the San José metropolitan area are Puerto Limón on the east coast, Liberia on the northwest and Puntearenas on the west coast.
Nearly 85% of Costa Rica’s residents are of European or mixed European/Indo-American descent (Mestizos). About 7% is a mulatto (mixed European/African) and 2% is indigenous. Most indigenous people live in remote areas or reserves. About 1% of the inhabitants are of African descent, mostly descendants of migrants from Jamaica in the 19th century. There are also many people from other parts of Latin America who are often refugees or economic migrants, in particular many residents from Nicaragua and Colombia who live in Costa Rica.
The country has a stable economy, with an average income of approximately $12,000 per year. This is half of Panama, but higher than much more northerly Central American countries. The country is popular among Western companies that outsource production and development to cheaper but stable Costa Rica. The country exports various agricultural products such as bananas and coffee. Tourism is playing an increasing role in Costa Rica, especially eco-tourism. Costa Rica is a safe country for tourists by Central American standards. Costa Rica is the most visited country in Central America.
In the early 16th century, Spanish Conquistadors reached Costa Rica. During the colonial period, the area was mainly controlled from Guatemala. Despite its name, Costa Rica was an isolated and poor area during the Spanish Empire, partly because the country did not have many raw materials such as gold and silver. Because there was only a small indigenous population, they could not be used to work on the land, so that there were few plantations haciendas compared to other parts of Central America. Costa Rica became peacefully independent from Spain in 1821. It was then part of the Federal Republic of Central America, which had its capital in Guatemala. Sovereignty was proclaimed in 1838. In the 19th century, much coffee was grown in Costa Rica, and was the main source of income in the country at the time.