The Happiest Country in Latin America

Why is Costa Rica consistently ranked among the top of the happiest countries in the world and the top one in Latin America?

Costa Rica is the winner of many accolades, from the Happiest Country to the Best Place to Retire, as well as the Best Place to visit Post Pandemic and the Top Eco-Tourism destination in the World, among many other top designations’ year in and year out.

This is a result of the many attractions the country has to offer to both Visitors as well as to persons looking for a new place to live or to retire in and it also makes it very attractive for the new breed of Digital Nomads.  Located less than 3 hours flying time from Southern Florida and under 4 hours from Central Texas is a very big plus.  Being able to reach such a wondrous destination in such a short time allows vacationers more time to enjoy the ample flora and fauna and to see more tourism locations within the country.  For those who choose to live here it makes it so much more convenient for those times when they must go back to North America, whether it is to visit family or attend an event or possibly to get medical attention that their specific insurance only covers in the US.  So, location is a definite advantage to living in or visiting Costa Rica.

But location and beauty aside, what other elements combine to make this the Happiest Country in Latin America?

A recent study sponsored by the United Nations, the 2021 World Happiness Report (covering the period of 2018-20 and the ninth report they have done since 2012) uses the results of the Gallup World Poll team that look at the perception of happiness by the people living in each country and Lloyd’s Register Foundation, which provides access to the World Risk Poll.  These results are added to other country measurements to come up with a ranking of the happiest countries.  This last one placed Finland at the top and Afghanistan at the bottom and considered the effects on all countries of the Covid-19 pandemic. 


You can read the entire report at:    These reports are launched annually on International Day of Happiness, March 20th.  Costa Rica was ranked 16th, placing it at the top of the Latin American countries as well as above the United States and many other First World countries.  Some of the items measured are Quality of Life and Length of Life.  Costa Rica is again the leader in Latin America on life expectancy and places 20 places above the US.  When you combine World Class Medical and Dental care (both Public and Private) with easy and affordable availability of healthy foods and so many places to go and relax the mind, that are both affordable and spectacular and within easy reach, you get a population that even in difficult times, has a perception of happiness and it shows in the friendliness and happy demeanor of the average Costa Rican.   Ranking of Freedom to Make Life Choices places Costa Rica in 11th place worldwide.  By comparison Canada is 19th, the United Kingdom is 52nd and the US is ranked in 62nd place.  So, it is the sum of all these realities and perceptions that make Costa Rica so unique and such a good choice for both Visitors and for those wishing to relocate.