Turtle Rescue and Conservation

As a volunteer on our project you will actively contribute to the rescue and conservation of the endangered See Turtle in the Peninsula de Osa region.

While the diversity of species in Costa Rica is astonishing, hosting 5% of the world's total biodiversity, current human-made threats such as poaching of endangered species, pollution and global warming remain. Out of the four Sea Turtle species living around Drake Bay, one is critically endangered and three are classified as vulnerable. Against this background, our partner organisation established a frontline conservation project for the protection, rescue and conservation of these fascinating animals and their habitat. Our Rescue and Rehabilitation Center is located on the southern tip of Costa Rica, the Peninsula de Osa and Drake Bay, one of the few tropical fjords in the world. Besides the rescue and treatment of injured or ill animals, the aim is to conserve their habitat. Apart from our volunteers' work, it is crucial to involve the locals in the process sustaining their livelihood through participation as host families or educating school children about environmental conservation. 

In-Water Work

At least two days a week, you will be working on the boat and the water helping to catch and examine the sea turtles. The Peninsula de Osa currently (and hopefully in the future) hosts four of worldwide seven sea turtle species that are left - Hawksbill Sea Turtle, Green Sea Turtle, Olive Ridley Sea Turtle and Leatherback Sea Turtle. Out of those, the Hawksbill species is the most endangered one. Your tasks:

  • Attaching and throwing out the net
  • Catching the turtle and carefully lifting it on board
  • Identifying the turtle and filling out the data collection protocol
  • Biometric measurement of the animal

Rescue & Rehabilitation

If necessary, for example when turtles are found injured our sick, they are brought back to the station and stay in large water tanks for a couple of days to take further blood and tissue samples. Your tasks:

  • Taking tissue and blood samples
  • Rehydration of the turtle
  • Changing the water in the tanks
  • Behavioural analysis
  • Feeding

Mangroves & Sea Grass

A further important working area is the reforestation and monitoring of the mangroves and see grass around Drake Bay. Often mangroves function as breeding grounds for diverse fish and bird species and are essential for the photosynthesis and therefore growth of other flora. See Grass ensures the stability of the lake shores, function as a natural filtering system and serves as feeding grounds. Your tasks include:

  • Searching for mangrove seeds
  • Collecting nutrient-rich mud for the seedlings
  • Planting seedlings in chosen areas

Apart from the activities above, you will also be involved in some educational work in primary and secondary schools, to teach the children about environmental conservation and animal protection, which is fundamental for long-term environmental awareness. 

Suitable for


Program Requirements

Minimum Age
18 years
Language Skills
You need to speak English (fluently)
Health Declaration
Criminal Background Check
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 08:00 - 16:00

Do you have any questions concerning this volunteer opportunity in Costa Rica? Volunteer World directly connects you with Gapforce

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Free-time activities

On the weekends you will have enough time to explore the beauty of the Pensinsula de Osa as well as the rest of Costa Rica. With its unique beaches and a variety of national parks, there is a vast number of fun activities, such as surfing, trekking, ziplining and horse-riding. Just around the corner there is Corcovado National Park, one of the best parks to go trekking and rated by National Geographic as "the most biologically intense lace on earth". Furthermore, you will go on a fantastic one day horse-riding tour to a hidden jungle waterfall, which you can rappel down. An absolute highlight and included in the price!

Water Sports


What's included?
3 Meals/day
All project equipment
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees.

No worries, Volunteer World supports you in raising funds, checking your visa regulations and travel insurance. We also assist you in finding the cheapest flights for your journey.
Airport Pickup

Airport pick-up on the day of program start.


The accomodation is right at the station and consists of renovated bungalows and dorm-rooms mostly with a private bathroom.

Dorm Room
Food & Beverages

The three meals per day consist of nutritional, typical costa-rican food.

Internet Access
Limited access at the project site
1 week (min. stay)
2 weeks
3 weeks
4 weeks (max. stay)

You can volunteer at the project site in Puerto Jimenez/Costa Rica between 1 weeks and 4 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. Gapforce will tell you your final price during your application process.
Average Fees
Deposit (20%)
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 (80%)
Your final payment must be made up to 30 days before to the volunteer program starts. This payment is also securely handled by PayPal or credit card.

Get ready to volunteer in Costa Rica

Check out first

Visa Regulations
Depending on your nationality, you have to arrange your visa for Costa Rica. Please check the visa regulations for Costa Rica.
Travel Seasons
Find out the best time to volunteer in Costa Rica and receive information on weather and climatic conditions.
Living Costs
Living costs vary with each destination. We give an overview of what you should plan as an estimated budget to volunteer in Costa Rica.
Generally, volunteering abroad involves certain costs. In case you need financial support, we will assist you to fundraise your volunteer program in Costa Rica.

What's next?

The nearest airport is Juan Santamaría International (SJO) in San José. 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.
Vaccine Checker
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.
What can you do in leisure-time in Costa Rica while you are not working at your volunteer opportunity?
Packing List
Packing our bags is important to prepare your trip, but often turns into a last minute horror. Make sure you don't forget the essentials by creating a personalised packing list for your volunteer program in Costa Rica upfront.
Playa Blanca, Puerto Jimenez, Costa Rica