from 592€

Great 4.4rating (202)

Sloth Monitoring and Turtle Conservation

location
2 - 28 weeks  ·  Age 18 - 50+

rating  Great 4.4  · 
  Verified by Volunteer World
  Excellent response rate

Complete your reservation as soon as possible. This project fills up quickly and is already booked on certain dates.


Highlights

  • Discover the wonders of one of the world's most biodiverse countries, where nature's bounty awaits at every turn!
  • Embark on a captivating journey where sun-kissed beaches and vibrant wildlife seamlessly blend into a program of pure perfection
  • Immerse yourself in the enchanting embrace of an exotic paradise, where the harmonious melodies of animals and ocean waves create a symphony for your senses
  • Indulge in an authentic wild experience like no other, where culture, flavors, and breathtaking landscapes intertwine to create unforgettable memories
  • Join us in safeguarding our precious environment- become an environmental champion and leave a lasting legacy

Especially suitable

Age 18+
Singles
Couples
Families
Groups
50+

About the program

Join us in Quepos to actively conserve sloths and turtles, monitoring these beautiful creatures. Make a significant impact on wildlife and nature!

The project
Begin your volunteer adventure and head to the rainforests of Costa Rica 30 km south to one of the most important national park in Costa Rica as Manuel Antonio National Park, where you can take part in the vital conservation of some of the country's most vulnerable wildlife. You will help ...

About the program

The project
Begin your volunteer adventure and head to the rainforests of Costa Rica 30 km south to one of the most important national park in Costa Rica as Manuel Antonio National Park, where you can take part in the vital conservation of some of the country's most vulnerable wildlife. You will help to care of the many animals you will find during monitoring.
In the same camp, we care for sea turtles, rescue their eggs and take them to a safe place where we protect them until they hatch. Then we will release them into the sea. In addition to turtle monitoring, we take scientific information like the measurements of their size and we check if they have a wound that needs to be treated. 

What is the importance of our program? 
Costa Rica is one of the countries with the most biodiversity in the world. However, due to the exploitation of natural resources and buildings, the  habitat of many wild animals is threatened, especially of animals as vulnerable as sloth and turtles. They have difficulties to adaptation to new environments, so we often find these beautiful animals injured or orphaned. This project is about research and protection of these adorable friends.  

The location
The project is located 30 km south to Manuel Antonio National Park, the beach, forest and mountains. Our volunteers work directly in the data collection and will be involved in all the recovery processes of the species that are rescued. They will be in constant contact with our biologist who will take all the information and give them the necessary training for the field work. 

What do we expect from our volunteers? 
That they are lovers of nature and animals, willing to learn, with a good attitude and desire to help. 

What can you expect of our team? 
People with a great love for our animals and all the nature around us. We're friendly people and ready to make you feel at home and are professional people with knowledge and experience at work.



Typical day

The day starts at 5 am with morning monitoring. We go to different points previously marked where there is more activity of these animals. We monitor not only the two species of the sloth, but we also do it with the associated species. In addition to their diet, we collect data scientists and field ...

Typical day

The day starts at 5 am with morning monitoring. We go to different points previously marked where there is more activity of these animals. We monitor not only the two species of the sloth, but we also do it with the associated species. In addition to their diet, we collect data scientists and field samples that are then analyzed.

After a monitoring patrol we return to our house where we have breakfast at 8:30 a rest time where it is possible to enjoy an extensive beach of volcanic sand, in the paradisiacal Pacific of Costa Rica. 

12 pm is half day lunch time. We go to our next monitoring from 1 pm to 3 pm. 6 pm is dinner time. The next monitoring is at 7 pm until 9 pm

Turtle patrolling depends of the tide. This tasks starts at 6 pm. We go looking for turtles at the beach. When the turtles are found laying eggs, we rescue the nest and take it to a safe place which we call hatchery. Here we protect them until the turtles are born and release them in the sea. 

The tasks in the hatchery consist of watching the nests in 6-hour shifts. Here, we have a small cabin to protect us from the sun or rain, 

The written works can vary every day as well as the schedules. This means that depending on the season, we will be more focused in one or another area. It will also depend on the number of volunteers

In addition, the activities could vary depending on the circumstances, such as finding injured animals, helping them and taking them to the rescue center for recovery depending on the severity. If their recovery is prompt, there is also the opportunity to release them into their environment again. This does not mean that you will be in daily contact with these adorable animals. Most of the work will be monitoring and collecting scientific data in order to study their population and in which state of risk is this kind of species. 

In the task of turtle conservation, when we find one on the beach, we take measurements and scientific data. Also when the turtle babies are born, we take data before releasing it. During these processes, the volunteers will have the opportunity to touch these beautiful and mystical creatures of the sea.


Free-time activities

The town of Matapalo is located in a very special place. Because we have extensive beach of more than 10km, volunteers take on sport activities such surfing. If you do not know how to surf, on the neardest town Dominical 15 km from the camp you will find a school where you can learn to do it. 

You'll

Free-time activities

The town of Matapalo is located in a very special place. Because we have extensive beach of more than 10km, volunteers take on sport activities such surfing. If you do not know how to surf, on the neardest town Dominical 15 km from the camp you will find a school where you can learn to do it. 

You'll have the option to explore one of the most important parks in Costa Rica called Manuel Antonio locstes 30 km North to the camp, from the camp you can walk 10 minutes to take the bus and the bus takes around 50 minutes to Quepos. It is where you can find one of the most beautiful beaches of Costa Rica 

You can also: 

  • ride horses
  • play football
  • walk in the jungle
  • visit innumerable waterfalls in the nearby mountains and do countless number of activities that this place offers


Requirements

Requirements

Minimum Age: 18 years

In order to join the program you need to be at least 18 years old on the program start date. There might be exemptions if you can provide the permission of your legal guardian(s) or if your are accompanied by your parents.

Language Skills

You need to speak English (basic level)

Nationality Restrictions

No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.

Time Commitment

Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday

What's Included

What's Included

Services by Tortugas de Pacuare

Our program includes: accommodation on site, 3 meals a day as well as the support of 2 Volunteer coordinators who will be attentive to coordinate anything you need before during and even once the program is over.

We also offer the opportunity to our volunteers to combine programs, even if you only applied for one program and wish to divide your stay in any of our programs, we will take care of coordinating your reservation and transfer to the other camp (the change of programs is subject to availability of space in the programs)

Airport Pickup at Juan Santamaria International Airport

Our driver will pick you up at the airport duly identified with the logo of our organization, he will get in touch with our coordinator infirming your arrival then will take you to the car where he will provide you with Wi-Fi

The driver will also give you an activated sim card with national coverage, mobile data and a telephone number with which you can have communication at all times, the card will carry a balance of $4 and you can recharge your balance when you need it at the recharge stations

In this way you can be in contact with your family, friends and with our coordinators, who will be attentive to your needs.

The camp is located 3.5 hour from San Jose, so the taxi takes you to the TRACOPA bus station, the person in charge of picking you up will provide the bus ticket for you and will help you board the correct bus

Keep in mind that if your arrival at the airport is after noon, you must spend the night in San José and travel the next day to the camp, taking the 10:00 am bus, in which case we will coordinate a stay for you. 

If due to arrival time you must spend the night in the hostel, our driver will take you from the reserved hostel to the bus station to TRACOPA bus station, will provide the bus ticket for you and will help you board the correct bus

The cost for this service US$80 

The stay in the hotel must be covered by the volunteer and has a cost of $20 in a shared room

Accommodation

We live in a 2 story house only 200 meters from the beach. It has 2 rooms with bunk beds for 8 people each. Our house has two showers and two bathrooms. The view from our rooms is towards the mountains and Matapalo beach. 

Food & Beverages

We offer vegetarian and vegan food.

Breakfast: pancakes, omelet, Gallo pinto, empanadas, tortillas con huevo, and different tropical fruits. 

Lunch and dinner: different kinds of picadillos with rice and beans, tortilla de papa, spaghetti, patacones with beans paste, and many variable and Costa Rican food. 

Internet Access

Good access at the project site

What's NOT included?

What's NOT included?

Flight Tickets

The nearest airport is Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) in San Jose. We assist you to find cheap flights to Costa Rica. FIND CHEAP FLIGHTS

Travel Insurance

Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Costa Rica provides security and is a plus to have. GET A QUOTE

Vaccines

If you are intending to volunteer in Costa Rica you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Costa Rica. VACCINE CHECKER

Details on arrival

Arrival it's available any day except Sundays.

From San Jose take the bus in TRACOPA at 6:00. The bus is going to Uvita. Ask to the bus driver you need to get off the bus in Matapalo town. After you apply we provide to you more detailed your arrival.

Ask for our option of transportation from the airport to the project for an aditional cost $170 one way 

Availability
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Program fees

2 weeks (min. stay) 592€
3 weeks 888€
4 weeks 1,183€
5 weeks 1,479€
9 weeks 2,401€
17 weeks 4,535€
28 weeks (max. stay) 6,790€
Average fees 269€/week

Program fees

269€ per week 2 - 28 weeks Age 18 - 50+

Payment methods

Visa Master Card Maestro American Express PayPal

NO CREDIT CARD FEES


Duration

2 - 28 weeks

Deposit

The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by PayPal, our trusted global payment provider. If you don't have a PayPal account, you can also pay using a credit card.


Final Payment

Your final payment will be agreed with Tortugas de Pacuare during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.


Meet your organization

Tortugas de Pacuare

Great 4.4 rating (202 reviews)

Agency - founded in 2012

Verified by Volunteer World

  Excellent response rate

Coordinated by

Luis

Spoken languages: Spanish, English

About the project

Tortugas de Pacuare is a non-profit organization created to protect the most endangered turtles in the world, supported 100% by volunteers.

Meet your organization

Why coming as a volunteer to save sea turtles in Costa Rica?

Costa Rica has many of the most important beaches in the world for turtle nesting. The government protects some areas, especially national parks, but many important beaches for turtles are unprotected. For this reason we started our project Tortugas de Pacuare and with the help of volunteers around the world. We have been working and saving turtles for more than 12 years now! Without the help of the volunteers, protecting these wonderful animals wouldn't be possible.

The protection of the turtles and the biodiversity of this area is our goal. In order to achieve it, we need the help of international volunteers. You, as a volunteer, should have the willingness to help with tasks that require a close attention. To support our diligent helpers, we create an atmosphere at the Tortugas de Pacuare project that makes them feel like at home. You should have a desire of leaving a mark in a humble village as well as the desire to succeed in the fight for a good cause. 

Our project Tortugas de Pacuare is located 40 km South of Tortuguero in a small town called Barra de Pacuare, an island in the middle of the Caribbean. This makes us one of the most strategic destinations for leatherback turtles, green turtles, and hawksbill turtles, which are some of the most threatened species and are in serious danger of extinction. On the island are living a few people, there are several bars; the closest one is called "Las Machas". There, the volunteers can also buy what they need like shampoo, gel shower etc. or biscuits, cookies, cigarettes, beers etc.

Our vision is to save these turtles by hard work and making a change, not only for the animals, but also for the people, starting with the education of the children of our community.

A lot of reasons can steer a volunteer to take part in a humanitarian project: a cheaper way of travelling or a new experience and a different way of living. The volunteers come to learn about turtles, to improve their Spanish, to live a new experience, to isolate themselves and disconnect themselves from the reality.

We want to make your stay with us as enjoyable as possible, excited to share with you. Your help is necessary to maintain the preservation of sea turtles. Without our patrols, the beach will be vulnerable. We want you to enjoy your experience with us as much as possible.


What does a volunteer need to bring to Pacuare? (packing)

In the following list, you will find objects that you should take with you in order to make your stay in Pacuare more comfortable. This list is also helpful for travelling around Costa Rica.

  • During some hours a day, the wifi is available. However, if you want to assure you an internet access whenever you want, it is better if you by a Costa Rican phone card. Kolbi is the more effective operator on the island, you can recharge it on the island but its efficiency depends on the climatic conditions and the number of devices connected.
  • There are no banks on the island, you need cash (colones).       
  • Put your stuff in plastic bags and remove the air with a straw, it is useful to organize them and if it rains, they will not get wet.
  • Black Crocs with socks (comfortable and appropriate for night patrols).
  • A soap-dish if you use bars of soap (for hygienic reasons).-    
  • Mosquito bed net and mosquito repellent (Off or Relec) in the form of spray, bracelet and patch.
  • A lot of underwear
  • A coat and pants, especially if you come during the rainy season; because, it can be colder.
  • First Aid Kit
  • Cap      
  • Padlock
  • They do not sell hand rolling tobacco in Costa Rica
  • Make a photocopy of your passport and laminate it. Take it with you instead of your passport when you go for a walk or go shopping.
  • Also, you cannot stay more than 90 days in the country without a visa. If you want to stay longer, you will have to leave the country during at least 72 hours.

  Essential:

  • Sunblock
  • Dark clothes for night patrols (lght)
  • Headlamp with red light (you can put a translucent red paper on it)
  • A watch if you are an assistant

Day work

The type of work depends on the period of the year, the number of volunteers and the night work. Sometimes, you will work during a certain amount of hours and sometimes till the end of the task

We try to make the day work as relax as possible because night patrols are tiring. But if a volunteer wants to work on a particular task, which is very important to him, the volunteer must feel free to do it without waiting for staff members’ instructions

  • Clean up the beach: remove organic materials and rubbish which hobble the sea turtles on their way to the beach or hobble the babies to reach the sea
  • Breeding pond: construction of the breeding pond, clean it up, check its condition, take data and watch it during the night
  • Construction of shelter to protect oneself from the rain during the night patrols
  • Night patrols: walking on the beach at night to find sea turtles
  • Housework
  • Maintenance of the garden and construct a kitchen garden and take care of it (harvest)
  • Compost: to dig a hole in order to throw the organic trash inside it
  • Bring the sorted waste to the Coast Guards
  • Wash turtles’ stuff
  • Construct a kitchen garden and take care of it (harvest)

Pastimes

The project has some books and games to entertain oneself and chill out.

  • One-day trip to the mountain, game/quiz night, Latin music class, Spanish class, Hanging out, baking cookies, survival class, caimans tour, cooking class, campfire y marshmallows.
  • The volunteers can also go to the Tortuguero national park or Puerto Viejo during the weekend.

202 reviews · rating4.4

Hey! I was in playa Matapalo for 2 weeks and I had a very nice time there. It’s a lot to say but I will try to make it short. The accommodation was ok, exactly how was described by another volunteer and the organisation. But we are there more for the animals and I had the opportunity to see 3 ...
I volunteered for two weeks at the camp in the Caribbean coast. Besides volunteer works, I spent great days there just enjoying the life in the island such as sleeping in a hammock, lying on the beach, drinking fresh coconuts, playing beach volleyball with friends, and so many other activities! I ...
Alexandra Nicoleta Nedea rating5

2023 at Sloth Monitoring and Turtle Conservation

I volunteered for 2 weeks at the camp in Matapalo and I wish I stayed longer! The staff was a 100/10, good food, good vibes and nice activities (turtle patrolling on the beach, sloth monitoring, beach cleaning...). You also get a good amount of time off to relax and visit the towns nearby. My ...
We loved our experience! The 2 main volunteer activities are focused on the turtle efforts. First, there is morning patrol (from 4:30 - 6:30 a.m.) looking for turtle nests; you will do this ~4 days per week. Second, there is monitoring the turtle hatchery for a 6 hour shift; you will do this 2-3 ...
Pascale Emmisberger rating4.8

2023 at Sloth Monitoring and Turtle Conservation

You are working in shifts in the harboury to protect the turtles nests. In the night you go on patrols to find nests and bring them to safety. There are also a lot of smaller activities during the day. Like go and plant some new trees, walk along the beach to find wild sloths or clean the living ...
Wir sind abseits der Saison da gewesen hatten dennoch einiges zu tun und habe viel über die Tiere dort gelernt. Robi war sehr hilfsbereit und zuvorkommend er hat uns über alles mögliche aufgeklärt. Auch gab es einen schönen strand da, ohne irgend welche Touris. Wir waren sehr happy da. ..

Location


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