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Expert

Vanessa Willing

Vanessa always has a bag packed and ready to go! Vanessa decided early on that the best education was to see the world and meet its people! Born and raised on the West Coast of the United States she grew up exploring the Pacific on camping trips with her family. After some work with event planning, she bought a one-way ticket to Chile and backpacked her way through Central and South America. Her love for travel made her seek out a position as a tour guide leading groups through Costa Rica and Central America where she fell in love with the Pura Vida spirit and decided to hang up her backpack and stay a while! Vanessa has traveled extensively from Coast to Coast in Costa Rica and is a true Destination Expert. Twenty years later she still is in love with Costa Rica and still is the first to get out her Camera when she sees a monkey!

Tips to keep in mind, help during your trip, recommendations and more

My recommendations for you

Why is Costa Rica a great destination to get married?

It is known that Costa Rica is a highly requested destination among many tourists around the world, all for its beautiful beaches, its majestic mountains, volcanoes, for its flora and fauna and for the endless activities that are offered to have the experience of a...

Costa Rica Typical Meals

If biodiversity is the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear the name of Costa Rica, the second thing should be exquisite food. The country that stands out for its incredible beaches and volcanoes, also stands out worldwide for its cuisine. Its simple but...

Thanksgiving in Costa Rica

Thanksgiving is one of the most celebrated American holidays in Costa Rica; every year, thousands of expats gather to give thanks and dine on foods that commemorate the autumn harvest. Whether celebrating with family or new friends, it’s a day to relish familiar...

Movies Made in Costa Rica

Costa Rica may not have a large film industry, but many film productions have been made here, as well as many film plots have been set in this country. Thanks to its natural wonders and the variety of places and landscapes, Costa Rica has managed to increase the...

Pura vida, The essence of Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a country in Central America, well known for its lush flora and fauna, home of 4% of the world's biodiversity. Its small territory offers wonderful landscapes, rivers of clear waters and lagoons, beautiful beaches, green mountains, humble and cheerful...

The typical restaurants of Costa Rica: The “Sodas”

When you visit Costa Rica and you want good local food, you have to eat at a soda. You haven’t experienced real Costa Rica if you don’t eat at a “soda”.  “Sodas” are what Costa Ricans call their local restaurants. A Costa Rica soda are normally small open air...

Architectural Treasures of Costa Rica

Religious, cultural and governmental buildings still stand as beauty landmarks throughout the capital. The diversification of architecture in Costa Rica ranges from the Spanish heritage itself to the European heritage in general. One can only marvel at the remarkable...

Guayabo National Monument: An unsolved mystery

A mystery thousands of years old awaits its discovery in the Central Valley of Costa Rica. The Guayabo National Monument, just north of the city of Turrialba, is located on the lush hillside of the active Turrialba Volcano. Opportunities to explore the monument...

Masquerades: The Costa Rican Halloween

You may not get to trick-or-treat and you may not gorge on pumpkin pie. But Costa Rica celebrates on October 31st the Day of the Traditional Costa Rican Masquerade by the hand of the Giganta, Copetona, Pisuicas or Diablo, Death, Police, and Skull as traditional...

Black and Afro-Costa Rican Culture Day

The Day of Black and Afro-Costa Rican Culture, celebrated every August 31, is when the African heart of Limón roars with all its strength, rhythm and joy, where the smile of its people betrays how proud it feels of its roots, giving us a parade of colorful dresses and...