Maximo Nivel

Support a local Organic Coffee Farm

San José, Costa Rica show on map

Agency | Maximo Nivel

Help local coffee growers and learn sustainable coffee production from bean to cup. This volunteer program is especially suitable for:

Eco-Agriculture projects are located high in the cloud forest, surrounded by the natural beauty of the mountains and near the famous cloud forest of Monteverde. Volunteers work directly with a coffee-farming community to support the families in their daily activities. This includes all aspects of the coffee growing process from planting to roasting, and sometimes working with the final product. Activities may vary depending on the season, as coffee harvesting is from December until early February​, but there is plenty of interesting work to do all year round.

Volunteers at Eco-Agriculture projects may be asked to:

  • Harvest and process coffee beans
  • Tend to the coffee tree nursery
  • Plant and prune coffee trees
  • Package and market the coffee
  • Assist with reforestation projects
  • Support supplemental agriculture projects

Participants are always supported by Maximo Nivel’s in-country coordinators but they are not on site at the project. Volunteers work directly with the Spanish-speaking project director and his or her assistants.

The program begins with 1-2 days in San José where volunteers receive an orientation and information about their trip to the project site. At the project site volunteers are housed with one of six families that we work with among the 26 that live on this particular land. These families have comfortable accommodations that include warm showers. Access to ATMs, grocery stores and other common conveniences will require a 15-20 minute taxi ride. 

Typical day

Working hours vary according to the needs of the project, but volunteers can expect to work 4-6 hours per day, Monday to Friday, in the morning or in the afternoon. If there is additional need for assistance volunteers may work on Saturdays and/or Sundays.

Details on Arrival

Every Monday, all year round. Public bus transportation to and from San José and the project location at the beginning and end of the program is included. The taxi ride to and from the bus station and the host family at the beginning and end of your project is also included.

Free-time activities

During their free time volunteers can find plenty of outdoor and adventure activities to take part in including hiking, ATV tours, ziplining, and bungee jumping. Within San José, they can take a city tour, see shows at the National Theatre, visit the central market, and go zip-lining. Our local staff also posts a monthly events calendar to let them know of the activities going on around the InstituteOutside of San José, they can hike up volcanoes, go whitewater rafting, and take a trip to the Pacific or Caribbean coasts. There are so many options and our staff is well-acquainted with the area to help advise on the must-see places. Tours and trips can also be easily booked through our on-site travel partner.

Water Sports

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)
Criminal Background Check
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 and Friday

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 Maximo Nivel 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 Maximo Nivel.

Before your journey

Profound consulting and ongoing support (free)
Maximo Nivel (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 Maximo Nivel

Our fees include:

- Airport pick-up
- Host family / Dorm accommodations (shared room with half board in San José and full board at the project site)
- Program and safety orientation
- Walking tour
- Official certificate of volunteer service
- Emergency contact number 24/7
- Program management

While in San José:

- Free Tandem Conversation Program
- Free office-wide WIFI and computer lounge
- Free social activities
- Free coffee and tea and on-site snack bar
- Maximo Nivel Institute open 7 days/week

Airport Pickup at Juan Santamaria International Airport

Airport pick up in San José and public bus transportation to and from the project and San José at the beginning and end of the program are included. Volunteers find our representative outside the airport brining a yellow flag with a smiley face on it.


For the first couple days volunteers stay in San José to receive the orientation. In San José, they in a traditional family-stay where you they are placed with a pre-approved middle class Costa Rican family. Breakfast and dinner are included in their home stay. At the Eco-Agriculture project, they also stay in a traditional family-stay which include breakfast, lunch, and dinner seven days a week.

Guest Family
Food & Beverages

The first 2 days in San José volunteers have 2 meals included (breakfast and dinner), while at the coffee project they have full board with 3 meals/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.
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)
1 week (min. stay)
2 weeks
3 weeks
4 weeks
8 weeks
16 weeks
50 weeks (max. stay)
Average fees

You can volunteer at the project site in San José/Costa Rica between 1 week and 50 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. Maximo Nivel 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 Maximo Nivel during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.
  Americas Central America Costa Rica  San José, De la Farmacia La Bomba, 75 metros Sur, San Pedro, San José, Costa Rica

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

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