Travel leg 2018/2019: from Puerto Santiago(Spain) to Puerto Viejo(Costa Rica)

The travel leg (2018/2019) we decided to split it in two destinations again: Spain and Costa Rica. It is always a Spanish speaking country because we’d love for our kids to learn this language. The first part of the travel leg (2018) we spend a couple of months in Puerto Santiago on Tenerife (Islas Canarias), part of Spain. To see if we felt a ‘fit‘ with this island to live for a longer while. For the second part of the travel leg (2019) we chose to explore Puerto Viejo in Costa Rica with the same objective: could we live here?

Going from Puerto Santiago to Puerto Viejo is quite a change! Well developed vs off the beaten track. Neckermann touristy vs backpackers heaven, economical vs expensive, five hour flight vs 14 hour flight, 100MB upload vs 1MB upload, 6 story apartment building to wooden house. I can go on for a bit as Puerto Santiago is in many ways almost the opposite of Puerto Viejo. Both of them are Spanish spoken. That is something they definitely share!

Puerto Santiago, Tenerife, Spain
What we really like about Puerto Santiago, Tenerife is the climate: eternal summer without being uncomfortably hot. Plus the biking, the outdoors, volcano El Teide to spend free time with the kids. What we  missed was a connection with the people of Puerto Santiago. It is a place with high visitor turn over and ‘Canarios‘ are a bit to themselves. It is not easy to connect even if we speak the language. Maybe because of the high visitor turn over, so many people they meet are gone the next week? We don’t know.

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica
What we like so far about Puerto Viejo is the ruggedness of the place. Dense and moist jungle, steamy hot climate and a lot of sun. It is unpolished, from beach to restaurant to supermarket. It takes a bit to get used to, but once we succeed to embrace the Jamaican(?) mindset, going slow and even slower, it gets more fun by the day.

Beaches with small puddles and no strong tides, ideal for small children. Jimmy’s Place, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica (2019)

Can we live in Puerto Santiago or in Puerto Viejo? Yes we could. But it is no Mexico. Somehow the Mexican people have stolen our hearts. The ease to connect is what sets them apart as far as we are concerned and we have yet to find it in another place.

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