Pura Vida

Mural on the wall of a surfer's hotel

Mural on the wall of a surfer’s hotel

Pura Vida is a mantra in Costa Rica. You see the words everywhere. Translated from the Spanish it means ‘pure life.’  It is used here as a way to greet people and say good-bye to them or to give thanks.  In Costa Rica it is a synonym for ‘that’s great’ or ‘excellent.’  Pura vida means that life is a gift and we should enjoy it. 

Advertising for a restaurant on a road barrier

Advertising for a restaurant on a road barrier

Apparently the phrase has been used for decades in Costa Rica and may have originated with a 1956 Mexican movie called Pura Vida where the main character uses the phrase ‘pura vida’ often even though his life is full of misfortune.

Photograph on a card in book shop

Photograph on a card in book shop

People in Costa Rica must take the phrase seriously because Forbes magazine reports that in many global studies Costa Rican people rank highest on the happiness scale. They have a relaxed simple way of looking at life and don’t stress about things the way people in much more affluent countries do.

Sign on an appliance store in Santa Cruz

Sign on an appliance store in Santa Cruz

Some claim you have to be Costa Rican to truly understand pura vida but others try to pass on the life style to outsiders encouraging them to remember that no matter what your situation, life is short and so you need to start enjoying it as best you can. 

Our bill was attached to this mini surfboard at a burger shack

Our bill was attached to this mini surfboard at a burger shack

Pura vida purses

Pura vida purses

Pura Vida restaurant in Uvita

Pura Vida restaurant in Uvita

Pura Vida shirt

Pura Vida shirt

People say ‘pura vida’ to us often in Costa Rica. We will do our best to try to catch and embody the pure vida spirit during our time in Costa Rica and also once we get back home to Canada. 

Other posts……..

Life Lines

The Breath of Life

A Life That Adds Up to Something

 

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