ITINERARY

DAYS 1-3: ORIENTATION & WILDLIFE REFUGE

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 a local cheese farm. We spend a day alongside experts at a wildlife refuge to become familiar with efforts to conserve and rehabilitate Costa Rica’s wildlife species. Interact with animals and prepare and serve their custom meals. We’ll also participate in informal Spanish games and lessons, so please come with a desire to use your Spanish!

DAYS 4-6: CLOUD FOREST RESEARCH AND EXPLORATION

Travel 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 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. 

DAYS 7-8: RAFTING EXCURSION

Travel east toward the Pacuare River for an unforgettable overnight rafting trip. Look out for unique reptile, bird, and insect species as we wind our way through exciting rapids among a lush rainforest setting!

DAYS 9-11: TURTLE HATCHERY & BEACH

Travel via boat to the village of Parismina, a small village on the Caribbean Coast on the southern border of Tortuguero National Park. While staying at rustic yet comfortable group accommodations, we engage in projects and tours to support both the local community and conservation efforts of native leatherback sea turtles. Activities include a tour of the hatchery, environmental projects, a night beach patrol, and a kayak tour through the canals of Tortuguero National Park. Spotting sloths, colorful frogs, toucans, monkeys, and water birds is not uncommon!

DAY 12: TRAVEL HOME

Our trip back to the Central Valley gives us time to share our memories before we fly home. We also have a celebratory dinner and awards ceremony at an authentic, local restaurant to reflect upon our last three weeks together.

The Global Works chaperoned Group Flight departs from Houston (IAH) for this program. 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.

SERVICE PROJECTS

Sea Turtle Conservation

Volunteer with turtle conservation organization in Tortuguero National Park

Wildlife Rehabilitation

Work alongside experts to rehabilitate and conserve Costa Rica’s diverse wildlife

Field Research

Support local research efforts aimed at protecting our planet’s plant and animal species

Environmental Projects

Participate in a beach cleanup to protect marine waterways

ADVENTURE & CULTURAL ACTIVITIES

Nocturnal beach patrol for turtle eggs

Learn to dance salsa and cumbia

Raft Costa Rica's best white water

Visit a local cheese farm

Hike through primary cloud forest

Gallery

Accommodations

SAN JOSE

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.

MONTEVERDE CLOUD FOREST

Our two cloud forest lodges are located within the boundary of the largest private reserve in the country, The Children’s Eternal Rainforest. To reach the lodges, students complete an attainable hike through primary cloud forest and are rewarded with rustic yet comfortable eco-lodges built to exist in harmony with the natural surroundings. Both lodges offer large rooms with bunk-beds and private bathrooms. A large balcony affords expansive views of surrounding volcanoes and the hammocks provide an unbeatable spot to sip coffee and relax after a long day of service work.

PLAYA TORTUGUERO/ PARISMINA VILLAGE

Our Eco-Lodge is located in the southern part of the Tortuguero National Park on the eastern coast of Costa Rica. It’s just outside of the small, quiet town of Parismina and walking distance to the beach. The lodge is dormitory style with separate rooms and bathrooms for boys and girls. The lodge has solar-powered electricity and is very basic, so please come with the expectation of simple-living! Our meals and volunteer projects are organized through the lodge.

Reviews & Testimonials

This trip has totally changed the way I think of myself and others and it has really made me want to be more a part of community service and traveling around the world and meeting new people and learning!

- Vera P-R., Costa Rica Participant

My trip leader always had a smile and was really good at giving advice and bringing up different perspectives.

- Catherine K., Costa Rica Participant