After spending all our lives enduring the cold Canadian winters of western Canada, my wife, Donna, and I decided to make the giant step toward living part-time in Costa Rica’s paradise. I had worked as a surface landman in the oil and gas industry and traveled many an icy road on cold snowy winter nights. Prior to that I was a forest ranger and spent time in many parts of Alberta freezing in the cold. Donna was a dental hygienist and she also spent a lot of cold evenings commuting to work in Calgary on icy snow-covered roads.
After spending many winter holidays in Costa Rica and enjoying the sunshine, warm beaches and friendly people, we made the decision in 2007 to live part time in paradise.
For many snowbirds the idea of leaving the Canadian health care system is worrisome, despite the great private and public health care here in paradise! So, if that is your worry, try the part-time snowbird gig! Depending on your province, you can spend 180 days or more outside of Canada each year. A lot of people miss the Canadian seasons, so how about just missing one season — old man winter. That can be six months or more, as recent snowfalls in Calgary in May prove!
For American snowbirds, you will find the private health care system here to be top notch for half the price. Many Costa Rica specialists spend a lot of time in the best medical universities and hospitals in the U.S., and many speak English.
We enjoy our life here in paradise, and keep busy traveling the country and doing the things we love to do. Having lived in Playas del Coco and Playa Hermosa (Guanacaste beach towns), the mountains of Guanacaste (incredible back-country horseback riding) and Escazu in the central valley (beautiful weather), we are back living in Playas del Coco on the northwest Pacific coast.
Over the 15 years of living in paradise, we have had many adventures in this wonderful little country. To keep us busy, we teamed up with the number one real estate firm in northwest Costa Rica — Tres Amigos Realty Group. What a great group of people from all over the U.S. and Canada, and Costa Rica! They keep us young and busy.
The Guanacaste area has a lot to offer! Great weather year-round and you can pick your climate for the day! Stay at the beach and enjoy the year-round warm ocean water or head out to the mountains (one-hour drive) to enjoy cool breezes, hot springs, canopy tours, horseback riding — whatever your pleasure. Only 25 minutes to the international airport makes our northwest coast the most accessible, both coming and leaving paradise.
So, if you are thinking of making the move or just spending part of the year in the sun, give us a call or email. We are here to help you plan your escape to paradise! With our 20 plus years of visiting and living in Costa Rica, we can answer the questions you may have about health care, the culture, the people, security and where to live. We can even help you pick your weather. The transition has not always been easy adjusting to a new culture, but our experience can help you avoid some of the bumps along the way – Pura Vida!