A Summer Service Adventure Working with Children In Costa Rica!

Experience the heart of Costa Rica, la Pura Vida. Maximize your community service hours and Spanish language immersion opportunities with community development projects and environmental service work . Practice your Spanish while living with local community members, roll up your sleeves for some meaningful community service projects in local schools, and pump up the adrenaline on a zip-line canopy tour and a Pacific surf excursion.



Our experience begins in our base lodge located 20 km outside of La Fortuna, where students and leaders get to know one another and establish goals for the weeks ahead. Here, we learn more about Costa Rica, take a Latin dance class, and visit an organic farm. A zip-line excursion allows a unique view of the rain forest canopy from high above! We also participate in some informal Spanish games and lessons, so please come with a desire to use your Spanish!


Hike up to a ranger station, our home for the next two nights, in the highly-biodiverse Monteverde Cloud Forest. A resident expert will guide us through data collection and recording techniques related to an ongoing environmental research project. Explore the trail systems, work on your species identification, and support local research efforts aimed at protecting our planet’s plant and animal species


While living in a local community, we work on education, community, and environment-focused projects. Typical projects include: pouring the foundation for a community center, planting organic school gardens, painting and tiling a community kitchen, teaching English lessons, or completing a sidewalk around the town square. One of our most popular projects is prepping and leading a “Día de Actividades” – an event for the community’s children (and adults, too!) that includes field day competitions, art workshops, music, games, and more! In the afternoons, we play soccer games and spend time with children. Evenings include cultural activities (such as dances or cooking classes) and games with our host community.

Depending on conditions concerning COVID-19, we will potentially do homestays in lieu of the community stay. Please see The Homestay Experience for more information on how we select our homestay communities and families!


Time to hit the beach! We travel to the Pacific Coast, famous for its unique combination of rainforest and ocean settings. We spend two full days taking surf lessons, taught by professional instructors. The wave conditions on this beach provide the perfect opportunity for all levels to hang ten!


As we say goodbye to our new friends and family, our trip back to the Central Valley gives us time to share our memories before we fly home. During a celebratory dinner and awards ceremony in a vivacious restaurant setting, we reflect upon our time together. We recognize that Costa Rica, our service projects, and our new friends have made a lasting impression.

Global Works offers chaperoned Group Flights for these programs. Airfare is not included in the tuition. Please contact us for the latest airfare pricing or visit our Flight & Travel Arrangements page for more information about travel days.

Please note that, given the unprecedented nature of travel currently, this itinerary is subject to change.

Participants may be subject to additional expenses related to entry requirements to your destination and/or re-entry to your home country. Global Works does not cover these expenses. Additional costs may include, but are not limited to, COVID tests, insurance, or other. See our Covid-19 FAQ’s for more information.   The most up to date requirements can be found via links on your login page on the Flight and Travel Day Instruction form after enrollment.

Community Service Projects

Youth Education Volunteering

Present English Language lessons to local community school children

Community Building & Infrastructure

Construct community facilities

Student Activities

Plan, organize, and run a field day for elementary school students

Environment & Conservation

Engage in environmental service projects and research activities in a research station

Adventure & Cultural Activities

Zip-Line above the rainforest canopy

Surf world-class Pacific waves

Learn about the Costa Rican culture

Visit an organic dairy farm

Learn to dance Salsa and Cumbia

Immerse yourself in Costa Rica's biodiversity




Global Works Costa Rica participants spend the first and final days of the program in a small and comfortable lodge located in the mountains surrounding the capital of San Jose. The lodge is locally owned and specializes in hosting student groups. It is dorm style with 4 to 6 students sleeping in bunk beds; each room has a private bathroom with hot water showers. Large group spaces located on the property are an ideal spot for group orientation, dance lessons, and ice-breaker activities.


This off the grid field station, nestled in the cloudforest, provides comfortable bunk style beds in groups of 3-4.  Meals are provided for us by the station staff.


Global Works has longstanding relationships with the communities where we stay and complete our service projects. Students will stay in a local hotel close to families. There will be significant interaction with local community members during this time.


Participants stay at an eco-lodge in southern Costa Rica located just steps from the beaches of Marino Ballena National Park. Accommodations are traditional hotel-style rooms shared by two to four students. The lodge is styled with an onsite swimming pool, hammocks, and common areas.

Reviews & Testimonials

This trip taught me important values such as courage, friendship, and laughter.

- Rachael K., Costa Rica Participant

It has allowed me to think deeper on rural life and the possibilities of sustainability.

- Sunny S., Costa Rica Participant