In Costa Rica: Snapshots – San José

Although most tourists stay in San José for only a night before heading out for adventure in other parts of Costa Rica, Barry and I were there for several days both at the beginning and the end of our trip.

We liked the architecture.  Even if a building wasn’t really architecturally special, often the color made it memorable.

Sometimes the building material is unusual like this building that is now a school; the outside is made of metal.


A school made of metal – in San José


Many places in San José offer good food or drinks


Even the underpasses can be memorable

And you never know what might come down the street:


Blindfolded, they walk along the street


Is this a comment on going to war? Or could it be how we blindly follow others? We saw it in San José.

San José parks are great places to watch people, listen to a guitarist, read.

We liked the architectural details and beauty of the buildings.

We enjoyed walking through San José streets.



Of course, some places in San José look very familiar


Art on a street wall – in San José

San José is mainly a city of low-rise buildings – and walking streets.

Costa Rican police  cruise up and down the walking streets to run off vendors and buskers – which probably means there aren’t enough jobs for the people who live in San José, but the people we met were friendly and looked happy.


A San José walking street

In the days we spent wandering through San José, we had good food, met terrific people, saw good museums, and heard lively music.    So when you find yourself in Costa Rica, enjoy San José, the capital city – before running off for adventures in the forests.

Pura Vida, Renée









About reneeriley

Our blog was begun as a way to share our experiences in China. From August 2010 to July 2011, my husband, Barry Kristel, and I were at our University of Hawaii Maui College sister school, Zhejiang Agriculture and Forestry University in Lin'an, China, a city considered rural because it has only 500,000 people! We had a wonderful time. Then in February 2012, we returned to teach this time at our other sister school, Shanghai Normal University, in a city of over 21 million people. We've made many discoveries. Did you know that now Chinese girls, at least the ones who go to university, for the most part feel they are luckier than the Chinese boys? Did you know that Shanghai saved over 20,000 European Jews during WWII? Do you know how Chinese university students would deal with problems that come up in Dear Abby letters? What's it like to be on the Great Wall of China? Do you know how many Chinese girls had their feet bound and why? And we have recipes from many of the places we've visited. Among others, you can find instructions on how to fry cicadas from one of my ZAFU students and how to make chocolate-Kahlua waffles from my brother Mike in Gainesville. You can also look back to our earliest entry to see what we experienced in Oaxaca, Mexico, in 2006 during the mainly peaceful six months of protest until the Mexican government sent in the troops. Between our stays in China, Barry and I have been on the Mainland U.S. visiting family, friends and Servas hosts as we traveled home to Maui. We share those experiences too. Welcome to our blog! Aloha and Zài Jiàn, Renée and Barry

One response to “In Costa Rica: Snapshots – San José”

  1. Rosita says :

    I love the photos! Thanks, my dear Renée! You have a very special place on my heart. ❤️ I’m facing a serious problem. As you know, violence is increasing rapidly on Brazil, but I don’t pretend on moving me to another country….yet! But if this reaches critically high levels, like in Caracas, the Venezuelan capital city, I’d mind about living the Caribbean Dream earlier than expected. But I’m NOT happy about this possibility. I’m very sad, I can’t think on this possibility without crying. So, while doing a search, wandering and wondering about the possibility of moving me to the Caribbean, I discovered that TCI (Turks & Caicos Islands) are safer than Brazil, and perhaps even mainland USA, which sounded pretty good to me. So, I’ll, I decide, move me for an awhile to TCI, perhaps for one or two years. Who knows? Let’s destiny decide it 😉 but even if I do this, I’ll still loving Brazil, because is where I came from, is where my roots are. Independently what occurs, I’ll still loving Brazil. 🇧🇷❤️ I just don’t like corruption nor uncontrollable violence and excessive political bad management. Maybe you’re missing my poems, so, I did a poem about actual Brazilian situation, just in case.

    I could have been born as a Bahamian or American girl
    But I’m a Brazilian belonger
    That pride will no stay longer
    The Brazilian Dream is dying

    If we face a new dictatorship
    Will sink the democracy ship
    The Brazilian Dream is dying
    Patriotism is an extinct word
    A crisis who have no ending

    I’m ashamed of being Brazilian
    And you?
    Aren’t you proud, are you?
    If not, I can understand you
    I can understand you
    The Brazilian patriotism died

    Patriotism is a dead word
    It just exist on World Cup year
    Our idyllic National Anthem
    Is nothing more than an utopia
    Corruption is dominating
    And honesty is vanishing

    We’re too petulant and selfish
    Daily we’re bombed by midia
    Scandals and more scandals
    Corruption and money wash
    It’s sort of historical misfortune

    I blame exploitation and colonialism
    For my country’s problems
    But it’s kind of not so good historical circumstances
    Selfishness and imperialism

    Well… What do you think about my poem?

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