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Costa Rica: The Sea Turtle Initiative™

Costa Rica: The Sea Turtle Initiative™

Become a conservationist for Costa Rica’s sea turtles on the unspoiled Caribbean coast.


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  • Protect endangered nesting sea turtles and their hatchlings
  • Assist in night patrols and visit an animal rescue center
  • Spot sloths, monkeys, and exotic birds as you cruise through the mangroves
  • Soar through the rainforest canopy on a zipline adventure
  • Learn to surf in the Caribbean
  • Explore a small beach town and its local market

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The population of Costa Rican sea turtles has declined by 90% since 1980. Sea turtles face a myriad of threats, including boat traffic, climate change, accidental catch by industrial fisheries and trash in oceans and on beaches. As a volunteer, you'll live and work on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica, actively assisting a turtle conservation organization and learning about critical efforts to preserve the habitat of this endangered species. Each turtle is precious! Sustainably rescuing the sea turtle population is research-heavy work, and with the right timing and luck, you might be rewarded with the sight of animals nesting or hatching.

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Community Service

Every day morning, you'll have a chance to make a difference in the lives of sea turtles and their future population. Take to local beaches and participate in clean-up efforts, removing debris that can ensnare young hatchlings making their way to the sea. You'll help local partners as they survey nesting sites and make sure they're primed for mother sea turtles when they're ready to nest! A big part of your service will be night patrols and raising community awareness of the challenges facing these animals in order to improve conservation efforts. Make signs that notify community members of protected nesting areas, and help educate local children on the importance of keeping the coast clean in order to preserve native habitat.

Hands-On Learning

You’ll be fully immersed in topics centered around the animal world, and learn how critical each species is to the health of all life in the ecosystem, including human. Hear local speakers’ and community members’ perspectives on sustainable conservation efforts, and begin to understand how competing interests of the civilized and natural worlds can intersect. Visit an organic farm and learn about local fruit trees such as cacao, vanilla, and banana plantations. Dance classes and cooking class will also be part of this experience you will never forget.

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Besides volunteering, you’ll spend time surrounded by the full spectrum of Costa Rica’s natural wonders, even more untouched on the Caribbean side of this beautiful country. Fly through the treetops of the lush, forested inland as you go on a thrilling ziplining adventure. Ride a boat through unspoiled waters of a local mangrove, where you can spot sloths, monkeys and exotic birds. Through cross-cultural exchange, you’ll connect with the strong Afro-Caribbean roots on the Eastern coast of Costa Rica. Learn to surf in the Caribbean Sea, followed by a day excursion to a local beach town where you’ll explore a local market.


Home Base is in the heart of the community, just a short walk to the Caribbean Sea. Students stay in gender-segregated rooms with roommates, and have Western-style bathrooms with cold-water showers. Here you’ll enjoy delicious home cooked Costa Rican meals. If you look closely, you might even spot local wildlife in the trees surrounding the Home Base!

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Dates & Tuition

Costa Rica: The Sea Turtle Initiative™ 10-Day Program
2018 Dates
Jun 16 - Jun 25, 2018
Jun 28 - Jul 7, 2018
Jul 10 - Jul 19, 2018
Jul 22 - Jul 31, 2018
Duration: 10 days
Tuition: $2,499
Student/Staff Ratio: 6 to 1
Community Service Hours: 20
Language Hours: N/A
See What's Included
Tuition includes all in-country expenses including:
  • All educational materials
  • Lodging
  • 3 meals per day
  • All in-country transportation
  • Airport pick-up/drop-off
  • Professional full-time staff and experts from the USA/Europe
  • 24/7 Parent Support Hotline during the program
  • Secondary medical and travel insurance
  • All cultural activities, lectures and weekend excursions
  • Pre-departure materials and support
More Information

Interested in Family-Friendly trips? Check out Discover Corps, our volunteer vacations for adults and families, in collaboration with the National Peace Corps Association.

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