San Jose, Costa Rica
San José is the capital and largest city of Costa Rica. Located in the Central Valley, San José is ringed by lush green mountains and valleys. The city is distinguished by its Spanish colonial architecture, such as the ornate neoclassical National Theatre of Costa Rica, at downtown’s Plaza de la Cultura. Founded in 1738 by order of Cabildo de León, San José is one of the youngest capital cities in Latin America by year of conception, though it was not named capital until 1823. Today it is a modern city with bustling commerce, brisk expressions of art and architecture, and spurred by the country's improved tourism industry, it is a significant destination and stopover for foreign visitors.