Santa Cruz is the third canton of the province of Guanacaste, Costa Rica, which is located in the northwest of the country. Its head is the city of Santa Cruz. Known as "the folkloric city", Santa Cruz is the head of the canton of the same name. It had a population of 55110 inhabitants in 2011. The population has an interesting cultural richness since it is the historical result of the mixture of several cultures such as indigenous, African and Spanish. The current territory of what is now called the Canton of Santa Cruz, was originally called "El Paraje del Diriá" by the first Spanish conquerors who arrived at the place, because the chieftain Diriá, Aboriginal leader of the Chorotegas, resided there.
According to Leal, the word "Diriá" of Chorotega origin has two roots: "Diri" which means hill and "A" which means tiny, in other words it means Colinita. This was, apparently, what they perceived from this city originally: a small hill between the rivers Diría and En medio. Later, the city was called Santa Cruz, when Dona Bernabela Ramos settled in the Diria valley and when she placed a large cross in the courtyard of her house, which also served as a place to celebrate mass. The canton of Santa Cruz was officially created by law number 36, in its article number 9, on December 7,1848 and is the third of the province of Guanacaste. By the year 1824, the population of the canton was 2,502 inhabitants, one of the most populated of the entire Guanacaste peninsula.
According to the 2011 National Census, the population of the canton was 55,104 inhabitants, of which 8.6% were born abroad. The same census highlights that there were 16,645 occupied homes, of which 61.9% were in good condition and there were problems of overcrowding in 6.0% of the houses.48.1% of its inhabitants lived in urban areas. Among other data, the literacy level of the canton is 98.1%, with an average schooling of 8.7 years. The same census details that the economically active population is distributed as follows: Primary Sector: 12.2%. Secondary Sector: 10.9%. Tertiary Sector: 76.9%.