Tourism is the first source of dividend income of our country’s economy. The tourism sector directly employs 130,000 people. Costa Rica currently offers 45,531 rooms. The number of annual revenues is the US $ 2,636 million, having thirty percent of the income from tourism in the Central American region, and stands out as the most visited destination of the isthmus. With an approximate of 500 visitors per thousand inhabitants, our country has one of the highest rates of tourists per capita in the Caribbean Basin.
Most of the people who visit us from abroad come from the United States and Canada, they make up 67.5 percent and from European Union countries 16 percent, which leaves the country on average approximately between the US $ 1300 and $ 1400 per visitor, value per visit among the highest in Latin America
Tourism contributes with 8.1 percent of the country’s GDP and represents 13.3 percent of direct and indirect jobs. Since the beginning of the 2000s, tourism generates more foreign exchange income for the country than the export of bananas and coffee together.
Costa Rica offers sun, beach, jungle, mountain, adventure, ecotourism, rural tourism and also has potential in the areas of sports, wellness, health, fashion and convention tourism. Ecotourism is extremely popular among foreign tourists who visit the vast number of beautiful National Parks and protected areas that can be found throughout the country. Costa Rica has been one of the first pioneers in ecotourism and is recognized as one of the few international destinations with real ecological tourism options. In the classification of the Tourism and Travel Competitiveness Index, our country reached the 38th place, being the fourth classified among Latin American countries.
The competitive advantages to develop tourism ventures are in the areas of human, cultural and natural resources, in which Costa Rica ranks 33rd worldwide, and is ranked sixth when the natural resources factor is considered alone. The main weaknesses of the Costa Rican tourism sector are its minimum number of sites of cultural interest, classified 101, the time needed to open a commercial establishment, classified 125, the state of the land transport infrastructure, place 111 and the poor quality of the port infrastructure, place 132.
Health tourism is emerging as a very good opportunity for Costa Rica, and the Government of Costa Rica declared through the executive decree, health and welfare tourism as a public interest. Already our country has been chosen as the best destination in Central and South America, according to the results of the annual edition of the Readers Choice Award, which was organized by Travel Weekly magazine.
Meet the wonderful theater of Costa Rica
In the field of performing arts, the theatrical activity of our countries is very dynamic. It includes a state-coordinated company, whose name is the National Theater Company. This discipline is taught professionally in two state universities, in different private institutes, and in the National Theater Workshop.
There are fourteen theater halls in operation, which are independent, three staterooms and also some regional groups, in which you can see from classical theater to vaudeville, that has generated an audience with their tastes for very different theater presentations. Most of the time there may be spontaneously formed groups of amateur theaters in some communities.
Although in our country the theater has been growing since the nineteenth century, with the founding of the University Theater and the Arlequin Theater in 1950, all this has been thanks to well-known actors and directors from Argentina and Chile, who left their countries in the seventies, moving away from the military regimes that had been established in those countries. Since then, Costa Rica experienced a boom period in the 1970s and a solid professional training was fostered.