Costa Rica // San José //

The Parque Nacional

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San José’s Parque Nacional, one of the city’s finest open spaces, marks the heart of downtown San José. Bordered by avenidas 1 and 3 and calles 15 and 19 and overlooked by rows of mop-headed palms and thick deciduous trees, it’s popular among courting couples and older men discussing the state of the nation. After gaining notoriety as a hangout for muggers and prostitutes, it was equipped with tall lamps to add extra light – a tactic which has apparently succeeded in drawing the courting couples back to its nocturnal benches. Even so, it’s still probably not a good idea to wander around here after dark.

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