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  Costa Rica General Information

Name: Republic of Costa RicaplumLocation: Central America, south of Nicaragua and North of Panama

Capital: San Jose

Area: 50,660 km sq (about the size of the U.S. state of West Virginia)

Population: 4.5 million (2006 estimation)

Infant mortality rate: 11.6 per 1,000 live births

Life expectancy: 77.49 years male, 79.52 years female

Total fertility rate: 3.11 children per woman (1993 estimate)

Ethnic divisions: white (including mestizo) 96 percent, Black 2 percent, Indian 1 percent, Chinese 1 percent

Religions: Roman Catholic (official state religion) 95 percent. Protestant faiths are practiced, and there is a small Jewish community.

Language: Spanish (official), English spoken around Puerto Limon, in the tourism industry, and by many professionals in the Central Valley

Administrative division : provinces Alajuela, Cartago, Guanacaste, Heredia, Limon, Puntarenas, San Jose

Legal system: based on Spanish civil law system, judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court

Direct election : democratic republic with two similar centrist dominant parties National Liberation Party (PLN) and Christian Unity Party (PUSC). Elections held every four years.

Education: Free and compulsory through the end of the 9th year.

Principal industries:Tourism, coffee, bananas.

In the following pages you will  find information about: What to bring? Traveling Tips, Weather, Books , Shopping, Costa Rica Cuisine, History, Holidays, National Parks and useful links.

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