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Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

About Costa Rica

Where is the country located?

Located in  América Central, between the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. Its 51,100 km² are full of surprises! The coastline is 1412 km long.

How is the weather in Costa Rica?

The country is made up of many different climate zones, which also creates a lot of microclimates within the country. There is not a true winter season, and it is classified as a tropical country because of how close it is to the equator.  It is more or less divided into two seasons, a dry season, often referred to as high season, and a rainy season, often referred to as green season. There is consistently about twelve hours of sunlight per day for the entire year.

What language is spoken in Costa Rica?

Spanish is the official language of Costa Rica, but a lot of people also speak English. You can find many English-speaking professionals; such as lawyers, doctors, and accountants.

What about the currency?

The local currency is COLONES but most of the businesses can receive US dollars. You can check the currency exchange rate at

What are the entry requirements, regarding COVID19?
How can I get health insurance in Costa Rica?

Expats who have their temporary or permanent residency status can use the national healthcare hospitals and clinics throughout the country run by the Caja. For those who do not have residency, paying out of pocket or purchasing a private healthcare policy is an option many choose. There are several expat-friendly and English-speaking private insurance agents in Costa Rica who sell a number of different policies.

There are now many doctors, hospitals, and clinics that have begun taking TriCare Overseas, the U.S. retired military insurance. Always check in advance before setting any appointments.

For those who are exploring or researching Costa Rica for a short term—less than one year—travel insurance is a good option.  These policies can be bought online. Be sure to read the fine print, as many policies do not cover certain things like extreme sports or pandemics.

How to arrive in Costa Rica

You can get to Costa Rica by land or flying. There are commercial and private flights available.


Costa Rica is home to two international airports, San Jose and Liberia. San Jose International Airport (SJO), also known as Juan Santamaria International Airport is located in Alajuela about 17 km northwest of San Jose.  Liberia International Airport (LIR), also known as Daniel Oduber International Airport is located 10 km southwest of the city of Liberia.  There are also 14 domestic airports/air strips: Arenal, Tamarindo, Nosara, Punta Islita, Tambor, Barra del Colorado, Tortuguero, Quepos, Palmar Sur, Drake bay, Puerto Jiménez y  Golfito

Directions in Costa Rica

Places in Costa Rica have no specific addresses. An address could be  “The blue house in the North street of the Sacred Family church”, for example. Be careful with Google Maps and Waze, as they do not always have the best route. Always research before going to places.

About La Ecovilla

What does it mean to live in community?

La Ecovilla is a multicultural community where people that want to live in harmony with nature and with each other can grow together.

In most of the neighbourhoods around the world, our neighbours are the people that just happened to buy next to you… but in La Ecovilla we believe in intentional living. We all decide to live in a natural environment, with respect and surrounded by people that care about you. That is why we have many activities that invite neighbours to get involved and this way we can make strong bonds. Eco Villagers don’t have to do communal works or maintain the communal spaces, so we paid an HOA fee for that purpose.

Is La Ecovilla self sustainable?

We would love to say we are, but we are not. We produce food (some of that harvest is shared in a weekly basket), we produce energy with solar panels and the neighbours that didn’t install their own system can buy energy to the net. We also manage our garbage in our compost or our recycling station and we collect the rainwater to water our gardens too. We even transform the black waters from our bathrooms and kitchens into methane gas in our biodigester; but we are not 100% self-sustainable. Our community extends the gates of La Ecovilla and we support San Mateo’s local farms. Almost every day, we have organic deliveries to Ecovilla: fruits, vegetables, coffee, bread, eggs, chicken, meat, fish and seafood, goat products, mushrooms.

Houses and my house construction

Recommended builders

La Ecovilla has no business contract with any builders but many neighbours can recommend to you the ones they used to build their houses having had a good experience. We can ask our neighbours for you in case you need a recommendation and you can make appointments by yourself with each one of them.

Can I build a tiny house?

Yes, you can build up to 25% of the space in your lot and you always have to have your project approved by the Ecovilla’s Architect Department.

Can I have a pool?

No, we believe that a pool is a space to share, for many reasons. First, because it is a space to gather and meet each other, and secondly, for a water management reason. However, you can build a jacuzzi.

Can I have a prefab home?

Yes, you can build up to 25% of the space in your lot and you always have to have your project approved by the Ecovilla’s Architect Department.

Locations and Surroundings

In the map:

We are located in the heart of Costa Rica’s fruit growing region with amazing weather, an hour from San Jose, 45 minutes from the airport, and less than 30 minutes from the beach.  Explore on google maps:

Distance from the beach

We are located at 51,6 kms from Jaco; 121 kms from Manuel Antonio;  138 km from Santa Teresa (Ferry included); 188 kms from Nosara;  200km from Tamarindo; 221 km from Limon.

Entertainment in the area

La Ecovilla is close to San Mateo and Orotina. These are small towns, mostly from farmers that have no huge infrastructure. People living in this area enjoy hiking or interacting with nature in general, so “entertainment” can be a completely different word here! Depending on what you are looking for, you can find El Teatro de la TierraParque acuatico Villas Fantasia, and of course, in San Jose city you can find shopping malls, cinemas, theatres, and everything else!

Stores in the area

Orotina and San Mateo de Alajuela are very close to La Ecovilla. These are small towns located in Cantones (local term for Estates) with the same name. These 2 towns have almost everything you might need. You won’t find the diversity of products that you have in big cities, though. Remember that San Mateo de Alajuela is a town with 3000 people and Orotina about 10.000, while the Capital city of Costa Rica, San Jose, is a 350.000 people city. Do not compare it with a 3 million population city.

Schools nearby

Casa Sula is our school. We believe that a huge part of the change in the world is educating our kids in a different way. Many kids in La Ecovilla are Homeschoolers or Un schoolers. But you also can visit the many schools in San Mateo, Orotina, or La Libertad

Do I need a car?

It is highly recommended to have a car since the distances are big and the local transportation is not very effective. Once again, this is not a big city.

Local transportation

You can find buses and taxis all around the area.

Is there any food or meal delivery?

In La Ecovilla we have delivery of many products. There are also some restaurants that can deliver food in case you do not want to cook. There are also many cooks that go to your home to prepare dinner for you, even those that “recycle” everything you have in your fridge and convert it into a great meal


Is everybody vegetarian or vegan?

 No, many people are though, but not all.

What do Eco-villagers do for a living?

Most of the people living in Ecovilla work online.

Is everyone COVID vaccinated?

No, some people are, and some are not.



Many houses have solar panels and produce their own electricity. Some of those also sell electricity to the net, and this way the houses that do not have solar panels can buy electricity from the general net.

Where is the water coming from?

We collect the water we drink from the Machuca River in tanks where the water is filtered.


We have the best internet connection in Costa Rica and we also are the only development that has it! Working with the national electric company, La Ecovilla pioneered the use of fiber optic as an internet connection in Costa Rica. Speeds of up to 300Mbps download and 100 megabit upload are available. It allows many community members to work remotely from home, as if they were in their home country. 


How do you handle COVID19?

We respect the law and the Costa Rica Health Ministry recommendations. We also respect each person’s will since it’s an important part of our beliefs

Is La Ecovilla handicap accessible?

The landscape is hard to transit in a wheelchair but not impossible. Some of the houses can be handicap accessible.

Is there a retreat center?

La Ecovilla has no retreat center since this is a small (only 45 lots) community to live in and we prefer to have people stabilized than people coming in and out all the time. However, there are some retreat centers in the area.

Are pets allowed?

We know that pets are an important part of the family, and for that reason, pets are allowed. However, we strongly encourage not to have pets in La Ecovilla. This is because we respect nature and La Ecovilla is not the natural habitat for cats and dogs.


San Mateo has a tropical climate. There is significant rainfall in most months of the year, mostly during the evenings. The short dry season has little effect on the overall climate. The average temperature in San Mateo is 23.1 °C | 73.6 °F. The annual rainfall is 2996 mm | 118.0 inch. The driest month is February, with 20 mm | 0.8 inch of rainfall. With an average of 493 mm | 19.4 inch, the most precipitation falls in October. The warmest month of the year is March, with an average temperature of 24.4 °C | 75.9 °F. October has the lowest average temperature of the year, with 22.2 °C | 71.9 °F. The difference in precipitation between the driest month and the wettest month is 473 mm | 19 inch. During the year, the average temperatures vary by 2.3 °C | 4.1 °F. 

The month with the highest relative humidity is October (91.78 %). The month with the lowest relative humidity is February (66.29 %).

The month with the highest number of rainy days is October (28.87 days). The month with the lowest number of rainy days is February (5.37 days).

My new lifestyle in La Ecovilla

Can I work there?

Most people in La Ecovilla work online. There are not many opportunities around the area, but of course, it depends on what you are looking for.

Volunteer opportunities

Ecovilla is a residential neighbourhood and we do not have volunteer opportunities. 

Job opportunities

You can find job opportunities in many Social Media groups but we recommend you to move here with a financial plan, not depending on finding a job.

How much do I need to earn to live in La Ecovilla?

It depends on how many people are there in your family and what lifestyle you want to have, if you are going to rent, or if you are going to buy. You can find some information about this in NUMBEO. You can also pretend to do an online purchase on the market’s websites to estimate your groceries.

Do the neighbours do the harvest?

No, as a neighbour you are invited to do the harvest if it is something that you enjoy, but we all pay a HOA fee for the maintenance of the gardens and orchard and we all receive a weekly basket with vegetables. Besides, there are fruit plants all over the lot that you can pick up yourself.


Can someone from another country buy in Costa Rica?

Any foreigner, resident, or non-resident has the same rights as a citizen, except for voting rights in presidential and municipal elections, and can, therefore, purchase and own Costa Rica real estate legally.

When you buy in La Ecovilla, are you the legal owner of the property or you sign a contract of use?

The process of the purchase of the house is done through a public notary and you are the legal owner of the property entitled under your name and you can sell it whenever you want.


The world changes every day, and laws too!! We strongly suggest you have an appointment with an immigration lawyer that can analyze your situation and recommend what to do.

Ask us for the list of the immigration lawyers that some of the neighbours recommend.

Real Estate

Do people use a selling agent or a buying agent?

You can, but it is not a legal requirement. Most of the time an agent represents both buyers and sellers.

Do you use escrow companies?

You can use them, but it is not a legal requirement. 

Do you need to be licensed to sell real estate?

Costa Rica laws do not establish a requirement to be licensed in real estate. There are some organizations that give licenses to real estate agents after a few days of course but it is not a must.

Bank & Financing

Can I open a bank account as foreign?

Policies on who is able to open a bank account vary from bank to bank. Most banks allow foreigners with legal residency status to open accounts To open a bank account as a non-resident at the Banco de Costa Rica, you simply need a form of identification, such as your passport, and a mobile phone number. Sometimes they also ask you for an income demonstration.

How can I open a bank account?

You have to ask your bank of preference because the requirement may vary depending on the bank.

How can I get a mortgage?

You also have to check it in your bank depending on your immigration status and your credit score. However, remember that credit rates in Latin America are higher than in other countries.

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