My friend and I are heading down to start our travels around the country to determine which area we would like to settle in. You said the Caribbean side didn’t feel entirely safe so we are wondering if there are areas on the Caribbean side which you consider safer than others?
That is a tough question since things are always changing for better or worse. We lived near Puerto Viejo and were made aware of some of the crime happening at the time by locals we talked to. Nothing bad ever happened to us personally but the house we were in was very open and didn’t have great security so that left us feeling uneasy when we left our belongings (e.g. laptops, camera, etc) when we went out somewhere. We have talked to other people who live in the exact same area who feel safe and it is probably because of a better house setup or increased security. That being said, crime like drugs, thefts, and even some assaults have been a problem on and off in the southern Caribbean and the government recently sent more police there to help get things under control. Hopefully it works because this is one of the most beautiful areas of Costa Rica. We would say that Cahuita has less of these issues so maybe check it out on your trip. Hope this helps and have fun exploring!