Community and Lifestyle

The Heart of San Joaquin, Costa Rica.

Nearly all towns within Costa Rica’s Central Valley revolve around a church and a soccer field, and San Joaquin is no exception.  Built in approximately 1880, the church of San Joaquin is constructed entirely of rock, which was transported by oxen cart from what was once the capital of Costa Rica Cartagat a distance of 87 kilometers. A Spanish painter decorated its interior, and local families donated statues to grace the well kept gardens. Within the cavernous, dark interior, a likeness of Lourdes Virgin (the Virgin Mary) proffers seating from which to enjoy garden views. It is a beautiful church and worthy of a visit.

Restaurants come and go quickly in this town; few have withstood the test of time. Fresas, a franchise found throughout the central valley, is popular with San Joaquin locals; food is relatively inexpensive and the restaurant sports large televisions for the ever popular soccer matches. The restaurant can be loud, but it is a fun place to hang out and people watch.

Another restaurant that has been going strong for several years is Restaurante Tierra Mar Peruvian.  Restaurante Tierra Mar Peruvian serves mostly fresh seafood, although the menu includes meat and vegetarian dishes. The owner is a trained Peruvian chef and a friendly fellow who takes time to inquire of his customers' satisfaction with their meal.  With its casual, family style setting the portions are generous and prices are more than fair. The only drawback to the place is that because of its location, next to a school, alcoholic beverages are not allowed for sale, although patrons do bring their own.

While there are no hotels or B&B's directly within the town of San Joaquin de Flores proper, there is one nearby in San Lorenzo (de Flores) worthy of a recommendation: B&B Vista Los Volcanes. Rates are reasonable for quiet, clean, efficient rooms. Second level rooms with balconies provide views of Poás Volcano. Fully appointed apartments may also be available. Carlos, the proprietor, is fluent in English and represents the friendly, hospitable nature of Costa Rican people.

Outside of town there are other overnight options within a 10-15 minute drive. Specifically, the Finca Rosa Blanca lies in the mountains of Santa Barbara above San Joaquin, and the Marriott Hotel is located in Belen.