South Pacific Indigenous Culture, the Boruca and Terraba People
The South Pacific of Costa Rica was once inhabited and ruled by indigenous tribes, mostly the Brunca indians, who are nowadays located in the villages of Boruca, Curré and Terraba.
Inspired by the knowledge of centuries of old tradition, Boruca people represent their inherent very creative expression through masks carved in balsa wood, and painted with vibrant colors and the weaving of colorful textiles. The threads for the material are generally dyed with leaves, roots and extracts from sea shells.
The masks are important elements in the annual Diablitos Dance celebrated in Boruca y Curré. The dance represents the resistance of the "Diablitos", representing the Boruca people, against the Spanish conquistadors.
Today indigenous peoples of Costa Rica strive to revitalize their indigenous culture and show it proudly to their communities visitors.
The experience of meeting these indigenous communities is unforgettable for tourists who visit them, observation of the work of the artists who carved masks, women weaving, presentation in theatrical form of traditions, mythologies and history of their native culture is something that is worth knowing.
If you visit the South Pacific of Costa Rica, we recommend include in your program a visit to indigenous communities, we assure you will very satisfied.
Sites with stone spheres of Valley Diquis in Osa, were declared World Heritage Site and it is here where you can see these expressions of art in a culture who lives in the South Pacific of Costa Rica for thousands of years. Remember to visit Batambal, Grijalba, the Stone Park and or the Museum at Finca 6 which are the world heritage sites .
Find articles about indigenous culture, art and the artists themselves with an attractive photo gallery, showing their very original crafts.
NonKuaxa ~ by Kurandenk (Kamel González Rojas) “Our goal is to make people aware of our village” Nonkuaxa means “the tail of the spider monkey” and has a spiral as symbol or logo. This group was begun 10 years ago with the intention of telling the pre-Columbian history, beliefs, traditions, stories, legends, and myths of Boruca […]
Pre-Columbian times in Boruca ~ by Susie Atkinson The Diquís delta, just south of Costa Ballena, is one of the most important deltas of Central America from the biological and cultural perspective. We will discuss the cultural aspect. “Diquís” in the native dialect of the Teribe (Térraba indigenous) means “great water”. The Valley of Diquís is bordered to the north by the […]
Milking of the Murex snail By Susie Atkinson y Ellen Hoel The art of milking of the Murex snail has its origins in the 4th century B.C. Cleopatra used that procedure to dye in purple the sails of her boat with the intent of flattering Caesar. The gathering of those fluids is a practice that […]
The Borucans ~ People of survivors ~ by Susie Atkinson The Boruca Indian history contains some very hard chapters. Through the long duration of the Spanish conquest, they did not give up! The Diquis region (southern border of Costa Ballena) became an important gold mining center, which brought raids and warfare with other indigenous groups. Columbus reported that he […]
Having traveled the world, Christophe Gstalder always returns to Costa Ballena, a place that has captured his heart. He lived for several years with the Boruca Indians, near Palmar, and maintains close ties with community members.