Nosara vs Monteverde

We are a family of 5 from the US looking to move to Costa Rica next Summer.  We have narrowed down our towns to Nosara and Monteverde.  I realize these may seem like total opposites.  Our main focus has been finding a wonderful school for our children, which both towns seem to offer.  It sounds as if the expat community in Nosara is much larger than Monteverde.  We do not speak Spanish yet, so this is appealing to us.  We are mountain people by nature, although the rain in Monteverde would be an adjustment.  The Nosara beach community sounds wonderful, however the heat will be an adjustment and I'm wondering if there is much access to culture in such an expat community.  Does anyone have any input?  It would be much appreciated!  Thanks in advance!!

As you mention they are totally different, so best to check them out for yourself... before you make the decision to move. It is said, that between 50-60% return to their 'home country' within 2-3 years.

Note that raising a family here is not cheap and  private schools are not inexpensive. The beaches are more expensive areas in which to live.

The area around San Jose offers the most cultural events.

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The long drive on unpaved roads to get to and from Monteverde would be a big deterrent for me.  A nice place to visit, but ...

Nosara is a pretty cool town. Very small community. In my opinion, great for a family. I don't know much about the other town but Nosara is beautiful.

Thank you!

I would visit both locations multiple times before committing to either of them.   Both are very isolated with terrible roads and limited services.   It's great during the honeymoon phase because you are still on vacation, but after that, the limitations of the areas begin to surface.   I would also spend time in multiple locations across CR.   

The Tamarindo area has much more to offer than Tamarindo, which is certainly not to everyone's taste.  Spend some time in less touristy areas up the coast like Playas Avallanas, Flamingo, Potrero, and Cocos.  They have large expat communities, great roads, gas stations(!), and lots of restaurants and grocery stores.   

I don't know what people see in Nosara.  My car got broken into there twice on weekend excursions and not once in the Tamarindo area where I live.  Also, I couldn't take those terrible roads and the dust everyday.  But, alas, everyone has their own priorities.

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