Welcome to Costa Rica! Discover Costa Rica on an exciting adventure that will make a difference in the lives of the people and wildlife in this Central American country. This program is a combination of volunteering and enjoying the most popular areas of the country. We have included different organizations that have been aiding small communities and its people. Collaborate with the indigenous Palenque Tongibe people in agricultural and craft activities in their biological garden and/or on the nature trails for their visitors. In Monteverde you will have 2-days of volunteer work, first at the Ecolodge San Luis and Research Station, which is a part of the University of Georgia. Here you can participate in a tree-planting project to offset CO2, work in the greenhouse or work with local families in the town on their farms. Spend the second day in Monteverde at the Biological Reserve preparing materials for their workshops on environmental education, maintaining the interpretive trail, visit schools to develop workshops, or in the Natural Resources Management and Monitoring Program, cleaning the trails, assisting on research projects or maintenance on the buildings and laboratories. Finally, spend a day at the Reserva Los Campesinos, a small cooperative of farmers who have developed a private biological reserve catering to the eco-tourism and scientific community. Here you will be assigned to help in the maintenance of the reserve's trails, helping in the kitchen or assisting in the classification of waste products to prepare for recycling. This will make for a truly unforgettable and rewarding experience.
Day 1: Arrive San Jose, Costa Rica- Santo Domingo de Heredia
Welcome to San Jose! After clearing customs & immigration formalities at Juan Santamaria International Airport, you will be met and driven to the Bougainvillea Hotel in the town of Santo Domingo de Heredia, just outside of San Jose.
Set among 10 acres of lush gardens, the unique and comfortable Hotel Bougainvillea is a place where guests can truly experience the world famous beauty of Costa Rica, just 15 minutes from San José downtown and 20 minutes from the airport. The large and bright rooms harmonize with the tastefully decorated lobby, restaurant, and common areas. Original pieces of Costa Rican art complement our stunning landscaped tropical gardens dominated by tall trees, plentiful flowers, ponds and mountain views.
Day 2: Santo Domingo de Heredia- Arenal
This morning your private driver-guide will pick you up at the hotel and then begin a scenic drive to the town of La Fortuna, home of the Arenal Volcano.
This afternoon, you will join a scheduled tour of Arenal Hanging Bridges, where you will enjoy a natural history walk accompanied by a local naturalist guide.
Arenal Manoa Hotel is a beautiful place to rest, relax and enjoy the marvelous view of Arenal Volcano. Surrounded by gardens, pastures and animals, the rooms have been designed so that each one offers you a panoramic view of the volcano.
Take advantage of the spacious gardens for walking and meditation as well as the opportunities to see the daily operations of a typical Costa Rican farm.
Hotel Arenal Manoa
Day 3: Guatuso
This morning you will be transferred to Palenque Tongibe, part of the Malekus Indian Reserve, in the town of Guatuos.
Spend the day working with one of the last indigenous groups of Costa Rica.
Return to the hotel in the late afternoon and get ready to visit the Ecotermales Hot Springs to relax after a hard days work.
Hotel Arenal Manoa
Day 4: Monteverde
Transfer via combined land and boat transportation to Monteverde. Enjoy breathtaking views of the Arenal Volcano from the lake. Arenal is the largest and most important lake in Costa Rica. It was man-made in 1974 to provide hydroelectric power to the country.
Upon arrival check in to your hotel. For your comfort all suites at El Sapo Dorado offer private entrance and porch, private bath with hot water shower, 2 queen-sized beds with orthopedic mattresses, versatile lighting, and a table and chairs for writing, playing games, or enjoying room service. All suites accommodate up to 4 people and are surrounded by spacious tropical grounds perfect for children s outdoor fun
The rest of the day is at leisure to explore the town on your own.
Sapo Dorado Hotel
Day 5: San Luis
Get ready today to visit the Ecolodge San Luis and Research Center, which is an extension of the University of Georgia in Costa Rica. Depending on the time of year you visit, you will be assigned to work at either a tree-planting project to offset CO2 (May, June, July, September and October); working in the green house (planting, cleaning and preparing plants), or working with local families of the town of San Luis at their farms (from November to January is coffee harvest time).
Sapo Dorado Hotel
Day 6: Monteverde Biological Reserve
Volunteers have been a key piece in the environments conservation promoted by the Tropical Scientific Center through the Monteverde Biological Reserve. Your workday will start at 7:00 a.m. and end at 4:00 p.m. You may either work on activities for the reserve's Environmental Education Program (preparing material for the workshops on environmental education, maintenance of the interpretive trail, visit schools to develop the workshops) or in the Natural Resources Management and Monitoring Program (cleaning the trails, assisting on research projects, maintenance work on the buildings and laboratories).
Sapo Dorado Hotel
Day 7: Manuel Antonio
Today you will be transferred to the Manuel Antonio area on the Pacific Coast. The remainder of the day is at leisure- why not enjoy the afternoon at your hotel's pool?
The El Parador Hotel is located on the densely forested peninsula of Punta Quepos in the most pristine and tranquil area in Manuel Antonio. This elegant Mediterranean style resort, surrounded by beautiful tropical gardens and staggering panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean has 108 rooms & suites. There are two infinity swimming pools with swim up bar and an adult swimming pool with cascading waterfalls. The hotel also features several bars and restaurants offering guests both local and international cuisine. Guests can get their exercise on the tennis court or at the in-house fitness center. There is also a computer center and high speed wireless Internet throughout the public areas.
El Parador Hotel
Day 8: Quebrada Arroyo
After breakfast you will be picked up and driven (about 1-hour) to the small rural community of Quebrada Arroyo.
A small group of campesinos (farmers) of the area formed a cooperative and have a 33-hectare farm where they developed a private biological reserve catering to the eco-tourism and scientific community. Here volunteers may be assigned to help in the maintenance of the reserve's trails, helping in the kitchen or helping classify wastes to prepare them for recycling.
El Parador Hotel
Day 9: Manuel Antonio
Today will be totally at your leisure to enjoy the famous beaches of Manuel Antonio, the hotels facilities or to simply relax.
El Parador Hotel
Day 10: San Jose
Today you will be driven to a local airstrip to board the return flight to San Jose. Upon arrival you will be met and driven to the Bougainvillea Hotel.
Day 11: Depart San Jose
Today you will be driven to Juan Santamaria International Airport in San Jose for your flight home.
Depart any day! Contact an iExplore Adventure Consultant for more details.
November 15, 2010 to April 30, 2011*
$2,650 per person double occupancy.
$1,020 Single Room Supplement.
May 1, 2011 to November 14, 2011
$2,520 per person double occupancy.
$776 Single Room Supplement.
* Prices are not applicable over Christmas/New Year's- December 15, 2010 to January 5, 2011 and Easter Week- April 16-24, 2011. Please contact iExplore for an exact quote over these periods.
Prices for your dates of travel may vary- please contact iExplore for an exact quote. Quoted prices are based on current rates of exchange, tariffs and taxes as of July, 2010. iExplore reserves the right to increase tour prices to cover increased costs, tariffs and taxes received after prices are published, and to reflect fluctuations in foreign exchange rates. iExplore is under no obligation to give breakdown costs involved in any package.
· Must be 21 years old.
· Copy of life insurance valid in Costa Rica
· No consumption of drugs or alcohol during the working days
· Follow the rules of each of the organizations
· Transfers airport/hotel/airport for international and domestic flights.
· Two nights accommodations at the Bougainvillea Hotel in a Standard Garden Room, including breakfast.
· One-way private land transfer San Jose-Arenal accompanied by a bilingual driver-guide.
· Two nights accommodations at Arenal Manoa Hotel in a Junior Suite, including breakfast.
· Scheduled (non-private) Natural History Walk at the Arenal hanging Bridges: includes round trip transportation, entrance fee and local bilingual guide.
· Volunteer day work at the Malekus Indian Reserve. Includes: round trip transportation, snack and lunch.
· Scheduled (non-private) visit to Ecotermales Hot Springs. Includes: round trip transportation and entrance fee.
· Scheduled (non-private) land/boat/land transfer from Arenal to Monteverde accompanied by a driver only.
· Three nights accommodations at Sapo Dorado Hotel in a Classic Mountain Suite, including breakfast.
· Volunteer day work at the Monteverde Biological Reserve. Includes: round trip transportation and lunch.
· One way private land transfer from Monteverde to Manuel Antonio accompanied by a bilingual guide.
· Three nights accommodations at El Parador Hotel in a Jungle Room, including breakfast.
· Volunteer day work at Los Campesinos Reserve. Includes: round trip transportation and lunch.
· One-way domestic flight from Quepos to San Jose.
· International airfare or airport taxes
· Transportation and meals not specified
· Personal expenses
· Optional tours and entrance fees not specified.
· Travel insurance
· Visas (if required)
· Holiday surcharges
· Life Insurance valid in Costa Rica
All prices are in US dollars and do not include international airfare, unless otherwise noted.
Prices displayed are based on the lowest season base price and assume double occupancy. Prices are shown in U.S. dollars and may or may not include administrative fees, taxes, meals, airfare (where applicable) and Single Supplements. Cancellation penalties, blackout dates and other restrictions may apply.