If not, a trip to Costa Rica might be the perfect antidote to cure your blues.
According to the Travel Channel, Costa Rica ranks No. 1 in the world for happiness, ahead of countries such as Mexico (No. 2), Colombia (No. 3), Vanuatu (No. 4) and Vietnam (No. 5).
With apologies to Disneyland, this isn’t the first time Costa Rica has been named the happiest place on earth.
The country has long been a top-10 mainstay in the Happy Planet Index, finishing No. 1 in 2012 ahead of 150 other nations.
Furthermore, the Environmental Performance ranks Costa Rica ahead of all Central American counterparts for its ongoing efforts to defend an opulent, green environment with region-defining carbon tax and animal protection laws.
With a life expectancy of nearly 80 years and no active military—it was abolished in 1949—many Costa Ricans live long, healthy, family-based lives without much of the stress associated with more developed nations.
As the locals say, this is a “pura vida” (or pure living) way of going about their daily business.
Costa Rica is also a worldwide leader in gender equality, ranking 41st in the World Economic Forum gender gap index. Costa Rican females, or Ticas, play a major role in the workforce, from teachers to lawyers to world-renowned chefs. In May 2010, Laura Chinchilla (look for photo) became the first female President of Costa Rica. She served four years in office.
If you’re considering making a trip to Costa Rica, you can expect to arrive in a country where smiles outweigh frowns by a 10-to-1 margin (we don’t have an official stat for this, but you’ll just have to trust our expertise).
Whether you’re a tourist or a local, it’s easy to have a smile on your face when beaches, rivers, jungles, waterfalls, mountain trails and more wildlife than two dozen zoos combined are at your fingertips on a daily basis. And did we even mention that the ocean water feels like a warm bath? Leave your wetsuits at home, surfers, but pack plenty of sunblock!
So, if Costa Rica is the happiest place on earth, then where is the happiest place in Costa Rica?
For our money, it’s the southern Pacific zone, where the jungle meets the sea. There are so many outdoor activities to do down here, from yoga to white-water rafting to hunting for world-class waves. And the crowds are much tamer than in the north, where beach communities such as Tamarindo, Nosara and Mal Pais can become somewhat crowded depending on the time of year.
Check out some of our amazing vacation rentals in Dominical, pick the proper spot for your family and friends, book that dream trip and sit back and let the smile just soak into your face.
Now, does that thought make you happy? We’re willing to bet it does.