Work in a National Park

Agency
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founded in 2003
Marion
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Coordinator | Marion
Coordinator | Marion
Book with Flex Option! Choose new departure dates or change to a different volunteer program at no extra costs.

High­lights

Learn more about the unique biodiversity of Costa Rica
Relax on dream beaches
Improve your Spanish skills
Get to know the very typical Costa Rican "tica" lifestyle
Enjoy a country with year round pleasant climate
Help preserve beautiful national parks in Costa Rica, protect wildlife, and educate its visitors. Experience breathtaking nature! This volunteer program is especially suitable for:
Age 18+
Singles
Couples
Groups
50+

For this project, you will be assigned to work at one of the many amazing national parks throughout Costa Rica. The diverse wildlife and nature of Costa Rica attracts many tourists to its national parks every year, and the country has become a world-famous travel destination. The parks offer various attractions, such as beautiful beaches, volcanoes, mountain ranges, rain and cloud forests, lagoons, rivers, waterfalls, and many species of exotic animals.

The parks are home to endangered species and also offer outdoor activities, such as hiking, horseback riding, rafting, zip-line and many more. During your stay, you may witness Costa Rica’s diverse wildlife first-hand, which includes monkeys, sloths, racoon, sea turtles and many types of birds and reptiles.

The main attraction at the coastal parks is its amazing sea turtles. The parks focus a lot on these beautiful creatures because they are in danger of extinction. Thousands of sea turtles come onto the beaches every year to lay their eggs.

Typical day

Since there are so many national parks to choose from in Costa Rica, daily tasks vary depending on the location you want to go. Usually, you will work 5-6 days per week from 8am-5pm, with an hour lunch break. Volunteers usually have at least one day off every week, and this gives them time to explore the breathtaking nature and rich culture of Costa Rica.

Possible tasks may include:

  • Clearing and maintaining hiking trails
  • Cleaning beaches 
  • Protecting and taking care of the local wildlife
  • Helping with the operations at the national parks by educating visitors on the local wildlife and environmental protection 
  • Administrative tasks in a national park’s office
  • Working at the visitor's center

Upon your arrival in Costa Rica, you will learn about the parks at an orientation meeting. Once you are familiar the parks available, it is up to you to choose which one you want to volunteer at. The selection process is based on the availability of the park and your experience in Costa Rica. No matter which park you choose, you will have the opportunity to gain invaluable experience.

You can also work in more than one park at no additaional cost. If you volunteer for longer than 4 weeks, you have the chance to experience different parks and regions of the beautiful country. Each additional park requires a minimum stay of 2 weeks.

Note: The tasks may vary. They depend on factors such as number of volunteers, weather, season, current needs of the project, as well as self-motivation. Not every volunteer may be fully involved in all these tasks.

Free-time activities

There are many activities that you can enjoy on your days off, such as hiking, horseback riding, rafting, kayaking, and more. In addition, you can explore the beautiful nature of Costa Rica and take in its breathtaking views.

Weekends are the perfect time to enjoy an exciting hike through Costa Rican nature since the main attractions of Costa Rica is its system of national parks and protected areas, which cover around 25% of the national territory, in order to protect the rich variety of flora and fauna, which is estimated to contain 5% of the world's biodiversity in less than 0.1% of the planet's land mass. In addition, Costa Rica has countless amazing beaches on both the Pacific and the Caribbean Ocean. 

Costa Rica is the perfect place to combine volunteer work with tourism, enjoy activities like:

- Adventure sport
- Dream beaches
- Ecotourism
- Local culture
- Bird / wildlife watching
- Visits to unique National Parks
- Rural tourism
- Sightseeing and history in San José

Water Sports
Swimming
Sightseeing
Diving/
Snorkling
Climbing
Hiking
Sports
Riding
Yoga/
Meditation

Require­ments

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 Spanish (basic level) or English (basic level)
Education Requirements
at High School level
Required Documents
CV and volunteer questionnaire
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

Services by South America Inside
  • Accommodation in volunteer house (dormitory)
  • Full-board (3 meals/day)
  • Overnight stay in San José (upon arrival)
  • Transfer from San José Airport to accommodation in San José
  • Transfer from accommodation in San José to bus station for the journey to project site
  • Translation of application documents
  • Placement in Volunteer Work Project
  • Orientation session
  • Help from experienced staff members
  • 24/7 emergency number
  • Advice on travel and insurance
  • Certificate of Participation
Airport Pickup at Juan Santamaria International Airport

There is an airport pick-up service that will take you to the place of your overnight stay in San José, typically a local host family. The following day,  you will be brought to the bus station where you start your journey to the volunteer project (bus ticket not included).

Accommodation

The accommodation varies depending on which park you are volunteering at. Some parks have dormitories in the administration building, while larger parks may have houses specifically for volunteers, which is a wonderful way to meet new people. Every volunteer house has bathrooms, bedrooms, and a kitchen. 

Dorm Room Guesthouse
Food & Beverages

Full-board is provided (3 meals per day).

Internet Access
Limited access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) in San Jose. We assist you to find cheap flights to Costa Rica.
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.
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.

Dates & Fees

NO CREDIT CARD FEES

Details on arrival

The volunteer work can be joined throughout the year. The start and end date can be set flexible, according to your availability and travel plans. Ask our experienced staff to coordinate your participation in this meaningful volunteer project.

Availability
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Duration
2 - 24 weeks

Program fees

Costs: Prices in USD
2 weeks (min. stay)
$965
3 weeks
$1,230
4 weeks
$1,495
5 weeks
$1,760
6 weeks
$2,025
7 weeks
$2,290
8 weeks
$2,555
24 weeks (max. stay)
$6,795
Average fees
$383 /week

Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated. South America Inside will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Deposit (15%)
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 (85%)
Your final payment will be agreed with South America Inside during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.

Why book with Volunteer World

Extra security layer by Volunteer World
Volunteer World is the world's leading comparison platform for international volunteer opportunities. We guide you through a safe and easy application process - including all necessary payments. Planning your next meaningful trip with Volunteer World gives you free access to our:
Quality Assurance
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Flex Option
Change your reservation at no extra costs
Refund Guarantee
We refund your fees if South America Inside cancels your trip
Support & Mediation
We cover your back no matter what happens
Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by South America Inside.

What are people saying about Volunteer World?

Work in a National Park

Help preserve beautiful national parks in Costa Rica, protect wildlife, and educate its visitors. Experience breathtaking nature!

$383/week

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