Costa Rica’s Jewish Population

Sinagoga Shaarei Zion, San Jose, Costa Rica
Synagogue Shaarei Zion, San Jose, Costa Rica

There are only 14 million Jews in the world; 7 million in the Americas, 5 million in Asia, 2 million in Europe and100,000 in Africa.  It is common knowledge that Jesus of Nazareth was Jewish. Albert Einstein, the most influential scientist of all time and TIME magazine’s ‘Person of the Century’, was a Jew.  Sigmund Freud did ego, and superego — the father of psychoanalysis was a Jew. So were Karl Marx, Paul Samuelson and Milton Friedman.

In case you don’t know Costa Rica has a Jewish population. Around the time of World War II many Jews immigrated to Costa Rica. Originally most worked in agriculture but they soon became involved in a variety of business endeavors. Now they own banks, automobile agencies, shoe store chains, department stores and many other successful businesses.  Many Jews are renowned professionals like architects, lawyers, doctors and dentists to name a few. They have also played a prominent role in the country’s political scene. As you can see Jewish people have contributed to making Costa Rica the great country that it is today. Visit for more information.

If you are Jewish and thinking of retirement in Costa Rica you should have no problem making friends and fitting in here. There is a synagogue  where you can worship and meet people of the same faith. If you have children there is even a Jewish school. Costa Rica has religious freedom and most other religions are represented here as well as having their own houses of worship.

If you enjoy my blog, please share it with your friends. I hope to see you on one of my tours!
To learn more about living in Costa Rica sign up for one of Christopher Howard's award-winning Relocation/Retirement tours. For all of the details see:
Live in Costa Rica Tours

6 thoughts on “Costa Rica’s Jewish Population”

  1. need help making a barmitzva in costa RICA..

    looking for a simple Bar-mitzva

    please call m e 22897486 or my cell 83070164

    please help me Bruce Cohen

  2. Planning a tourist visit to Pura Vida. Wondering if the Costa Rican ticos have a community seder to which tourist visitors might be welcome. My calendar says Pesach 2012 is also a Shabbos event. My hometown schul was Shaare Zion (“The Gates of Zion”), so I was somewhat surprised that in San Jose there is a similarly titled synagogue. Just curious. Have been to Costa Rica and enjoyed the visit. Being “echod ha’olom,” I thought enjoying a community seder abroad again would be another interesting adventure coupled with an eco-tour of Costa Rico during Pesach. Thanks for responding!


  3. Please let me know of a good professional high quality dentist in costa rica.
    I am a member of Chabad of Alexandria in virginia,usa.
    I am looking to come and get treatment,so i will apreciate your subjestion.
    Thank you
    Sylvain Melloul

  4. I’m considering relocation to Costa Rica and would like a list of Jewish neighborhoods in the country. I’ll be seeking 1 or 2 bedroom apartment with a view, a porch, and laundry.

  5. Looking for Michael Scharf in Jan Jose. He stayed with us as an exchange student and attended aJewish day school with our children. He’s probably in his 40s now. Would like very much to hear from him. Is there any way you could possibly help locate him and tell him that we would love to hear from him?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *