Costa Rica: Embrace the Nature, Simplicity and Serenity

When you feel the need to getaway

After a year of working at home, my husband and I were itching to travel. We needed a long overseas, you know, an almost nomadic kinda getaway. 

A lot of people asked me why Costa Rica: 
  • It was a place that was new and foreign to us, but not too far that we had to adjust the time zone for working remotely. 
  • It was also financially doable, or at least the place we stayed. We looked up places on Airbnb and the monthly rental was about the same as Houston, so it's not overkill for our budget. 
  • Plus we LOVE nature and Costa Rica has a lot of outdoor adventures to offer!

Where We Stayed in Costa Rica

We flew into San Jose, the capital city of Costa Rica. I remember it was around 1am. Our Airbnb was in Atenas which was about 1.5 hours away from the airport. We finally got to our Grand Casa around 2:30 am. So sleepy but excited. 

The Airbnb house we stayed at was on top of the mountain. We had to climb down some slippery hill every day in order to go to the town or get an Uber. The view outside was so amazing. I could never forget that infinite pool and mountaintop view. It really was the best getaway view we could ask for. 

If you never lived in Costa Rica, here are some interesting and helpful things we found out during the first week:
  • You would need lots of bug sprays. We received "big welcome kisses" from the mosquitos ✅ 
  • Ants were our friendly roommates for the entire 50 days. (I've never seen these many ants in my life. They were harmless.) 😆
  • People in Costa Rica were super cautious about Covid. Water sinks for people to wash their hands before entering any stores. Sanitizer stations were found in all locations. 
  • One thing I regretted was I didn't learn Spanish beforehand. We lived in a small village and not many locals speak English 😣 If you were like me, Google Translate would be your best friend. 

What nature spots to explore with kids


Costa Rica was definitely not short of waterfalls. There were many incredible parks with hidden trails to the most breathtaking waterfalls across the country. Some of the waterfalls like La Fortuna Waterfall could be reached by fairly steep stairs. They were surrounded by rainforests and might need to be reached through hanging bridges and treading waters. It was a bit challenging with young children, but the experience was super fun and rewarding exploring the cloud forests and spotting colorful tropical birds. 


No matter where we went, we would see lots of greens all around. The sky was blue and sunny most of the time in the morning. Be mindful that it rained a lot in the afternoons in Costa Rica, so we usually hiked in the morning when it was clear. 

You can check out some of the highlighted hiking places in Costa Rica. If you like mountains, Monteverde Cloud Forest would be a fun one to explore due to its high altitude. If you like something near the ocean, make sure to check out the Manuel Antonio National Park, which sits right on the Pacific coast with some of the most beautiful beaches. For me, my favorite hiking view was just outside the place we stayed in Aetnas. Literally, you could hike anywhere while you were in Costa Rica.

Simplicity and Serenity

Remote working with a small child could be stressful. When that happened, I would take a look outside the window, and breathe fresh air from the trees, the clouds, and the water. I learned to appreciate Mother Nature and the authenticity it presented through unfiltered color and rawness. 

Living in the city I did not remember a single time I look down at the pavement. While in Costa Rica, I saw an army of leafcutter ants walking down the street and moving leaves with their hands and heads. It was amazing to observe small creatures around us that were doing big things for their lives!

That moment when I saw the ants working tirelessly on their leaf-moving journey, I forgot about work stress. I was fully present at that moment, cheering for the little guys and enjoying the simple ways of living. Just like the famous saying in Costa Rica, "Pura Vida!" - That's life, great, and everything is cool!

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