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The small town of Atenas is located in the province of Alajuela. Atenas is best known for reportedly being voted by the National Geographic as having the best climate in the world, and it does! Consistently within a few degrees of 80F, a comfortable 60s at night, it's always just right. It's a small town but has everything you need and its a short drive or bus ride to many larger cities such as San Jose and Alajuela.

Like most Latin-American towns, at the heart of Atenas is the Parque Central, a full block of green space with trees, parrots, and benches to hang out on. Surrounding the park are several blocks of shops, open-air markets and restaurants. See our map for more details and pictures. There's grocery stores, the bank (BCR) with an ATM, post office and 2 internet cafes. K-Puchinos, by the park, which also serves pizza and other food and great coffee, another one near the post office which also sells CDs and other computer supplies.

Just past the bus station is our favorite restaurant, Alida's, with Italian food and a real pizza oven. On the other side of downtown near the CoopAtenas supermarket is La Trilla, an open air restaurant serving typical Costa Rican food (and great fruit milkshakes) at good prices.

For swimming, right near downtown is a privately owned park and pool (photo to the left) that's open to the public for a nominal fee. Or, a little further out of town Finca Huetares, pictured at right, where you can also picnic, barbecue, or spend the day going down the slide! With advance notice, Magda will also serve dinner in her restaurant with a great view.

Every Friday morning is the Farmers Market, just a block or 2 from our house, where you can buy everything from fresh fruit and vegetables to chicken and fish.

See our map and more pictures of Atenas.