first hand Costa Rica

Save Turtles In The North Of Limón

Limón, Costa Rica show on map
Get in contact with one of the most fascinating turtle species – the giant leatherback turtles – and help improve the local inhabitants' living conditions. This volunteer program is especially suitable for:
Singles
Couples
Families
Groups

About the Program

This program is located about 15 km north of Limón. You will reach this camp after a 30 min wonderful journey by boat through the mangroves. 

Besides the effort of protecting turtles and the biodiversity of this area, here you are in demand for community work. 

Together with the people in the local community you will be working on programs to educate people of the importance of caring about the environment. You should have a willingness to help in a task that requires a lot attention and have a desire to leave a mark on a humble village. Here you will find an atmosphere where you feel like family. 

You will be in a very remote camp and under very simple conditions. There is no standard electricity (there are solar panels), there are no grocery stores and no internet facilities. There are some spots on the beach where you might have a signal – but be prepared to be disconnected. 

The Caribbean is very humid, so be prepared for demanding circumstances – you will see: once you meet a giant Leatherback turtle (between February and June) or, later in the year a Green turtle (between July and November): the experience of connecting with nature and these fascinating turtles pay off the hard work!

Our Volunteers

Our Volunteers should have a love for nature and fun with outdoor-living. They should be prepared for sometimes physically demanding work and work at unusual hours as most of the turtle nesting occurs at night. The volunteers should bring a sleeping bag, repellent, mosquito net, flashlight, batteries, rain protection (May - November), sun protection and a hat or cap. 

Typical day

Your Tasks

You will walk on night patrols with local guides in which you will collect turtle eggs

You will relocate the eggs to a turtle hatchery where they will be safe from poachers

You will also volunteer to do community service work 

You will help to maintain community facilities, local schools and sports fields

You will do beach cleanup in conjunction with the Blue Flag committee

We also help the local population with the construction of gardens

Details on Arrival

This program is available from mid February until November. It starts every Monday. Please arrive at least one day before the programs starts.

Free-time activities

You are living far from civilization, so ti's recommended to collect the free days and use them in the end for a trip! 

You can travel down the coast to visit Cahuita, Puerto Viejo or our rainforest lodge. Or hop over to the pacific coast and visit us in Sámara! Also, there are many beautiful National Parks to see: Monteverde, Manuel Antonio, Rincón de la Vieja ...  

Water Sports
Swimming
Diving/Snorkling

Program Requirements

In order to join the program you need to be at least 17 years old on the program start date.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (basic level)
Required Documents
Copy of health insurance and valid in Costa Rica
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
If you are 17 years old, then you have to bring the written allowance of your parents - we provide a form for this!
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday

Included Services

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 first hand Costa Rica 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 first hand Costa Rica.

Before your journey

Profound consulting and ongoing support (free)
first hand Costa Rica (your host organization) provides consulting and is keen to answer all your questions. Once you reserved your spot, you will receive the contact details of your volunteer project.
Online preparation course (optional, from $49)
Prepare yourself and become a confident and well informed traveler. Global Travel Academy takes you on a journey before you leave home, helping you to become one of the world's greatest travelers. Our trusted partner for online learning offers courses in "International Volunteering", "Travel Health & Safety" and "Travel Safety Abroad".

On-site services

Services by first hand Costa Rica

We provide airport pickup, we organize the journey to the project and we also do hostel reservations in San José if needed (mostly it is needed!) - and, if you will combine projects, we will also organize the transportation between the projects. You will have to pay the cost for the pickup and the transport.

Airport Pickup at Juan Santamaria International Airport

You will be picked up at the airport by our driver with a sign with your name and you will directly get in contact with your german, english, spanish speaking coordinator via phone. The driver will drive you to the reserved hostel (if necessary), give you the bus ticket (he will buy a ticket in advance to reserve you a seat in the bus), pick you up at the hostel the day of your journey to the project and bring you to the bus.
The cost will be around 60 US$ plus the hostel night (between 10-12 US$ (dorm) and 30 US$ (single/double room).

You will be picked up from the bus by the camp coordinator and he will join you on the trip to the camp: you will take a ride to the harbour and than have a beautiful boattrip through the mangroves of 30 min to the camp. This boat trip costs 35 US$.


Accommodation

You will be living in rooms and dorm-like rooms under very simple conditions.

Dorm Room
Food & Beverages

Your food - breakfast, lunch, dinner - will be prepared in the camp and consists of the typical costarican cuisine: rice, beans, vegetables, meat and fruit.

Internet Access
Sorry, no 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.
Costs (Prices in USD)
2 weeks (min. stay)
$740.00
3 weeks
$906.00
4 weeks
$1,072.00
5 weeks
$1,238.00
6 weeks
$1,404.00
7 weeks
$1,570.00
12 weeks (max. stay)
$2,400.00
Average fees
$285.00/week

You can volunteer at the project site in Limón/Costa Rica between 2 weeks and 12 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. first hand Costa Rica will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Crowdfunding Service
Generally, volunteering abroad involves certain costs. In case you need financial support, we will assist you to fundraise your volunteer program in Costa Rica.
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 first hand Costa Rica during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.

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Reservation
The project site is open in: Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

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