The Costa Ballena area of southern Costa Rica’s Pacific coast is a truly exciting place to live.


The Costa Ballena area of southern Costa Rica’s Pacific coast, incorporating the towns of Ojochal, Uvita, and Dominical, is a truly exciting place to live. This is especially true for those who love nature, sports and outdoor activities in general. Besides being one of the most celebrated tourist and retirement destinations on Earth, the clean, adventurous and peaceful living the natural environment offers in our region facilitates a much healthier, more dynamic, and mightily self-empowering skill set development for children of all ages.

For retirees, digital nomads looking to resettle in a peaceful tropical paradise, and adventurous parents with growing children alike, the Costa Ballena area and greater Osa region of Costa Rica stand head and shoulders above the rest for experiencing the best available clean, fun, and enlightening lifestyle on the planet compared to city living, and even to most other tropical areas as well.

In point of fact, one of the most prestigious and long-established retirement community magazines on Earth, International Living, has just declared Costa Rica as the #1 place for North American and European expats to retire for 2021! Here is why in their own words, excerpted from their recent article (  “Costa Rica is an outdoor culture—with no shortage of physical activities from fishing, golfing, and horseback riding to hiking, surfing, and yoga. Plus, there are less processed foods, and abundantly healthy choices of locally grown fruits, vegetables, organic eggs, and endless seafood and grass-fed beef. It is no surprise to hear reports about expats having shed unwanted weight, taking fewer prescription drugs, and overall better fitness of mind, body, and soul.”

An additional advantage of moving to Costa Rica is the significant reduced cost of living. Costa Rica is highly affordable, even on the smallest retirement budget. Consumer prices are 24% lower than the U.S. on average. If you are a family and would like to provide your children a higher quality education than Costa Rica’s very basic public education system offers, this extra savings can be utilized to provide a more solid and secure foundation for your precious children’s future.

On the topic of Costa Rica winning the #1 spot on Earth for retiring in 2021, another magazine broke down the top 5 areas within the country to do just that ( Here are a few things they have to say about our beloved world-renowned ‘wild side’ of this paradisiacal expat haven: “About three to four hours from San José and the Central Valley, the Southern Zone offers a totally different landscape, lifestyle, and climate. It’s an unspoiled seaside wilderness with a laidback beach lifestyle and a warm, coastal climate. . . .

Dominical, a small surf village, is the gateway to the region. Uvita is the commercial hub, with banks, hardware stores, and pharmacies.

Ojochal is the jungle village famed for its gourmet restaurants, which are run by an international cast of expat foodies. Expats here relish the mix of natural beauty and off-the-beaten-path life, yet with modern conveniences very close at hand.” Completion of the coastal highway relatively recently (2010) significantly cut the drive time to the Southern Zone, and opened up this area to expats like never before. But development is still very small-scale, with the primary emphasis on sustainable development that has a minimum impact on the natural environment, and therefore the region is still unspoiled and shall almost certainly remain so for decades to come.

Please see our last blog post regarding the amazing variety of wildlife and natural environments in our exceptionally diverse and dynamic Costa Ballena region (

Another aspect of this area that may pique your ecological interest, is the fact that this area is still so fertile and uncontaminated by modern pollutants that many expats who move here jump on the opportunity to grow their own healthy organic food right in their own gardens! There are several Farmers Markets in the region where fresh organic produce can be obtained as well for those who don’t wish to ‘get their hands dirty’ themselves in the nutrient-rich soil, and some even make home deliveries now since the measures taken to fight the global pandemic shut down a few of the public markets (though some, like the Farmers Market in Uvita, have now fully re-opened). If you are one of those running a fully digital business or working exclusively online from your house, and so have more free time at home to do some gardening, this additional beneficial ‘outdoor activity’ – and additional health enhancement via an improved diet for you and your family — may be very appealing.

One of the most prevalent positive impressions we expats receive when we first arrive here is that the local ticos are generally wonderful people, eager to share the magic of their culture, food, and traditions with foreigners. In addition, in the Costa Ballena area, you will also find engaging expats who will help you through the process of acclimation. The vast majority of new arrivals say it is very easy to make friends and fit in here, and that is especially true for families with children. There exists no better way for a child to learn a language and culture than by interacting with the children who grew up in the area.  Learning the dialect from the local kids in both school and play imbues your children with skills that give them distinct advantages for their future lives as more self-empowered multi-lingual, multi-cultural adults.

On the topic of children, there are several excellent internationally-accredited schools here for your young ones to take advantage of. All are bilingual (or trilingual, in some cases), so your child has the golden opportunity to end up fluent in a minimum of two languages.

Right here in Ojochal we have the newest addition to the high-quality mix of accredited educational centers, Life Project Education.  There is also the Centro Educativo Costa Ballena just up the coast in Playa Ballena, also called Escuela Verde (located between Ojochal and Uvita), and two private schools in Uvita itself: the Uvita Christian Academy and Kabe International Academy. All of the above schools are recommended for their good curriculums, avenues for social & lingual development, and instructors who have a passion for teaching children. For more details on the local schools, public educational facilities, and children’s activities in this area, please see our blog post on that exact topic from last year (

Whether you are looking to spend your golden years basking in a tropical wonderland, relocate the base of your digital business activities to a more relaxed and stimulating locale, or provide your children with a significantly more instructive education in a much more personally empowering and stimulating learning environment – or accomplish all three at once! — the Costa Ballena de Osa region on the southern Pacific coast of Costa Rica is now ‘officially’ your best bet for investment in 2021. Our multilingual agents and staff here at Century 21 Ballena Properties, along with our associated business partners, have both the skill sets and deep experience to help you make all your personal and family tropical living dreams come true.

Questions about buying property in Costa Rica? Contact us today and discover how we can help you and your family to live the dream!

Published by ajimenez

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