Christmas season is here in Costa Rica! There is a lot going on in our town of Atenas, and all over the capital city of San José. So get your Santa hat and merry spirit ready, and let the rhythm of Christmas in Latin America dash you away!
Atenas, Costa Rica will hold its annual Christmas Fair the weekend of Dec. 11, 12 and 13 in the Central Park. It will be a weekend full of music, dance, theatrical performances, storytelling, a crafts fair and traditional food, all culminating in the big Parade of Lights (Festival de la Luz) on Sunday, Dec. 13.
Atenas events begin at 12:00 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 11. There will be artisans selling their crafts for Christmas, traditional foods, and music and dance ongoing all weekend in the park. Highlights include: a parade of huge puppets and a percussion marching band, called a Cimarrona con mascaradas from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. on Dec. 11; a live concert with dancing from 7:00 to 10:00 p.m. on Dec. 11; a Christmas choral presentation from 7:00 to 8:00 p.m. followed by a live concert from 8:00 to 11:00 p.m. on Dec. 12; storytelling, live music and dance performances from 2:00 to 6:00 p.m. on Dec. 13; and the very fun Parade of Lights with marching bands, dancers and other entertainers from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. on Dec. 13, followed by a live concert and fireworks show.
In the capital city of San José, 45 minutes east of Atenas, holiday season kicks into full cheer with the country’s biggest Parade of Lights (Festival de la Luz) on Saturday, Dec. 12. This year is the 20th anniversary. It gets started at 6:00 p.m. at the La Sabana Park with hundreds of marching bands from all over the country, horse-mounted groups, entertainers and brilliantly-lit floats that will perform their way down the Paseo Colon Boulevard to Second Avenue, finishing at the Cultural Plaza. One million or so persons converge on San José to attend the parade, showing up early in the day to claim their place on the sidewalk; the energy is electric with so many spectators. You can also watch the parade on national TV stations. The national Christmas tree – a huge lighted and decorated tree in front of the Children’s Hospital on Paseo Colon Boulevard – is a sight to behold.
If you are still in town the day after Christmas, the famous San José Horse Parade, or “Tope” is a fantastic Costa Rica cultural event to see. Thousands of horses and riders from all parts of Costa Rica will prance down Paseo Colon Boulevard to La Sabana Park from 12:00 to 6:00 p.m. on Dec. 26. ABOUT ATENAS, COSTA RICA
Atenas, Costa Rica is not only known as a best place to retire internationally, but is also a fun vacation destination. Contact Atenas Costa Rica realtors Dennis Easters and Gerardo Porras Gonzalez at Pure Life Development of Atenas for Costa Rica vacation rentals and Atenas homes for sale. For more information about Atenas, check out the Guide to Living in Atenas, Costa Rica and our recent list of restaurants in Atenas.
Article by Shannon Farley
Costa Rica Realtors Chamber
Tours in Costa Rica
Pure Life Development of Atenas is a full service tour company. We feature full vacation packages and day trips for the family. Our tour director Nelson Conejo is very experienced and provides a personal service and attention to detail second to none in Costa Rica. Please write Nelson or give him a call to arrange your next Costa Rican vacation at (506)2446-0447 or
Retirement Living in Atenas
Interview with Pure Life Development co-founder and certified realtor Dennis Easters, about Costa Rica ranked by AARP as "one of the best places to retire abroad".