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Holidays and Fiestas

As is true in most of Latin America, Costa Ricans love to celebrate, and do so with a colorful flair. In San José the whole week from Christmas until New Years is an extended holiday, during which the citizenry throw white confetti at each other in lieu of snow.  As the country maintains a religious loyalty, many of Costa Rica's holidays derive from the distinctive brand of Latin Catholicism -- three of them center around the Virgin -- while others are patriotic in nature.

Below is a list national holidays:

January 1: New Year’s Day.

March 19: St. Joseph’s Day, patron saint of San José and San José province.

Easter: Holy Week, Semana Santa. Many businesses shut down for the duration of the week.

April 11: Juan Santamaría Day. Commemorates the victory over presumptuous would-be American imperialist William Walker at the Battle of Rivas in 1856.

May 1: Labor Day. Día de los Trabajadores

June: Corpus Christi

June 29: St. Peter and St. Paul’s Day

July 25: Guanacaste Day. This marks the annexation of Guanacaste Province from Nicaragua in 1824.

August 2: Virgen de los Angeles Day. Patron saint of Costa Rica.

August 15: Mother’s Day and Assumption Day

September 15: Independence Day, Costa Rica’s independence from Spain in 1821. Lots of parades.

October 12: Día de la Raza (Columbus Day). Limited to the Limón province and featuring a carnival, which takes place in the week prior to October 12.

November 2: All Soul’s Day

December 8: Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary.

December 25: Christmas Day.

04 Nov 2010

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