If you’ve done any reading at all about Costa Rica, you’ve almost certainly come across the phrase Pura Vida. Literally it means “pure life,” but it’s practical meaning can be a bit tough to nail down. It can be a greeting, it can be a response and replace “you’re welcome,” it can replace “cheese,” when someone is about to snap a group photo and everyone is holding up their peace signs and thumbs-up.
Starting a new life in Cambodia as an expat can be a fantastic journey with all kinds of fun to be had. In the initial arrival period you will likely spend most of your time getting used to the culture, acclimatizing to the weather, and finding a nice place to call home.
I moved to Nicaragua 10 years ago and live in an adorable two-bedroom, two-bathroom home on half an acre with a beautiful ocean view. That would never have happened in the U.S. I also retired 11 years early. Back home I'd be working until the day I died.
If you’re considering a visit to Europe—or even a move—Madrid needs to be on your radar. A sunshine-filled cultural haven, this friendly city will capture your heart without breaking your budget. The underlying authentic charm and laidback, understated vibe of Spain’s capital proved irresistible to me when I first arrived.
Bob and Tammy Davis are adventurous souls. Not for them a cheap South Beach, gated-community retirement, instead they wanted the Pacific Ocean, miles of pristine sandy beaches, and the sort of small town feel of the U.S.—40 years ago.
My partner Damon and I recently challenged ourselves with the notion of a life where we could live more simply and affordably. We had come to realize that the ongoing race to keep up with the Joneses was not only tiring, but also never ending.
Imagine searching for a place to retire for over a year and practically tripping over a top contender—filled with a stately grace, colorful cobblestoned streets, delightful garden cafés, and ancient churches at every turn—and then discovering it comes all wrapped up in an affordable package.
The first day of my stay in Playa Brasilito dawned brightly and I couldn’t wait to get out on the white-sand beach. It was quite early and I found no one else strolling the stretch of more than a mile—the beach was often virtually deserted throughout my stay—but in the distance three horses carried riders into a mangrove-lined path.
During high season in Nicaragua, “head for the hills” is the phrase of choice for many expats who live near the beach. Because the beach is where everyone else goes. When the sun is at its hottest, work-weary people from all over the country head for the beautiful waters to refresh, rejuvenate, and party.
Jacó, on the Central Pacific Coast of Costa Rica, is a great place to live. It offers many of the conveniences of a First World country, while maintaining the simplicity, pace, and charm of life in a developing country. As a part-time expat, I split my time between Costa Rica and the U.S.