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Costa Rica Vacation Information
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Costa Rica History
Many people find the history of other countries a bit more interesting than the history of Costa Rica. It is not until you ask yourself why Costa Rica might have a simple if not almost never mentioned history. It is very simple. It is because the terrain of Costa Rica is very rugged and smaller tribes were always separated never allowing for a large indigenous empire to form like the Mayans, Aztecs, or Incas. This terrain also was also one of the reasons the Spanish said "forget about it". It became too much of a hassle to get through the jungle, mountains, and rain.
Now if you ask a naturalist about the history of Costa Rica he will begin to tell you that the Natural History of Costa Rica has some of the richest content you could find in any history book. The reason for this is the same for the boring history of humans in Costa Rica. The land was rugged and separated allowing many species to develop into separate species in a process called speciation. This explains why so much of Costa Rica is filled with biodiversity. The history of Costa Rica is filled with some of the most amazing stories you will find on the planet where evolution has fine-tuned it's ability to adapt in a way that fallen empires of great nations are still struggling to figure out what works and live in a more sustainable manner.
After applauding the natural history of Costa Rica we do have a bit of human history that is quite impressive from Costa Rica also. The fact that it was isolated from much of the Spanish Empire and larger pre-columbian tribes made for a unique history in itself. In 1502 on his fourth and final voyage to the New World Christopher Columbus made landfall on the Caribbean Coast of Costa Rica. With high hopes they named this new land "Rich Coast". They soon realized little gold was to be found in the new land and turned to agriculture.
For three centuries Costa Rica was part of the Spanish Empire until 1821 when it followed other colonies in the area to become part of the Central American Federation which had its ups and downs and led Costa Rica to become sovereign in 1838. It was just after this period in the mid-19th century that Costa Rica began to feed the European market with coffee and banana. The Costa Ricans began to get a taste of wealth and the city of San Jose was erected in a more European fashion because of the influence of many Europeans taking advantage of the coffee and banana boom.
The real turning point in Costa Rica was in 1899 when the era of peaceful democracy, that Costa Rica can boast of today, came into practice. It was in 1948 that Jose Figueres became president during a brief civil war. Shortly after he abolished the army making Figuerres a National Hero and Costa Rica famous for avoiding conflict in their non-military state.