West of La Garita the road narrows and begins its steep climb toward Atenas, a small rural town dependent on agriculture. Atenas is famous for its excellent fruit. A statue of the Virgin Mary crowns a hill about one kilometer east of the city and is visible from the street. There is a handicrafts shop on the outskirts of the town. It is especially popular with Josefinos who like to drive out to the lovely town on weekends.

A small, pretty church, surrounded by palm trees, marks the center of the town. Its cool interior rewards the visitor with an insight into the religious practices of rural Costa Rican communities.

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