Community and Lifestyle

Community and Lifestyle in Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica.

For retirees, Puerto Viejo can be a great choice. It’s best for the type of retiree who wants to have a quiet, beach-centered lifestyle. Residents tend to pass their days either at the beach or rocking on their porches with a lemonade in hand.  What Puerto Viejo lacks in organized retirement complexes, it makes up for in privacy and natural beauty. Puerto Viejo offers that laid back vibe and a feeling that everything will be okay.  

Young families also settle in and around Puerto Viejo, particularly those who are able to work remotely using today’s technology, or those who have started their own businesses in the area. Most people in the area speak both Spanish and English fluently, and the children benefit from being raised in a multicultural and bilingual environment. Still, families tend to live along the outskirts of Puerto Viejo to keep their children separated from the party scene that is sometimes seen in the heart of town.  Taxis and bike rentals are common ways to get around.

Tourists and residents alike can be seen learning to surf along Puerto Viejo’s reef. The surf breaks are gentle and perfect for beginners. ATV rides are available through the jungle. Canoeing and fishing are other popular activities in Puerto Viejo, and hiking through the miles of trails at Cahuita National Park can keep residents busy for months! There are also cultural excursions in the area, such as a visit to the BriBri indigenous tribe, who are glad to share their secrets of chocolate making.

For those who need the comfort of McDonalds or a Pizza Hut, Puerto Viejo is the wrong choice. Here, one finds only family run restaurants and “sodas.”  “Sodas” are small restaurants offering typical Costa Rican fare like “casados,” which are large plates with rice, beans, meat, and vegetables. Anyone visiting Puerto Viejo would be remiss in not trying “pate,” an empanada-like encasing filled with meat or fruit.  The pineapple pate is highly recommended!  In addition, the Pizza Stop is a nice authentic Italian restaurant for those who crave an alternative to the typical Costa Rican and Caribbean fare.

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