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Sodas—cheap snack bars serving typical Costa Rican fare—are a dime a dozen. They serve “working-class” fare, such as tripe soup, and chicken with rice-and-bean dishes. You can usually fill up for $2–4.
Within the warren of the Mercado Central (Calles 6/8, Avenidas Central/1, Mon.–Sat.) and adjoining Mercado Borbón (Calle 8, Avenidas 3/5) are stands selling poultry, flowers, meat, fish, medicinal herbs, fresh produce, and coffee.
The Mercado Paso de la Vaca (Avenida 7, Calle 6) is a clean produce market selling everything from fresh herbs to meats; take a taxi and be careful walking around this area.
© Christopher P. Baker from Moon Costa Rica, 8th Edition