Wildlife & Sustainability Voluntourism in Costa Rica

Costa Rica
2 to 10 weeks
Apartment Guesthouse
18 - 70 years
50 travelers are looking at this program

About This Program

Planet One World is an agroecological farm in the tropical rainforest Los Guardianes Wildlife Refuge. Our mission is to protect this astonishing piece of earth and through following our vision, we try to educate people on different sustainable living techniques. These mainly focus on working with nature. Participating at Planet One World's Voluntourism, you will gain deep insights into agroecological farming, wildlife protection, animal husbandry, wild animal treatment as well as forestry and forestry engineering.

Beside that, Planet One World is working together and supporting BriBri-communities. Get to know the indigenous culture, sleep in Indian tipis, experience a rafting tour in the BriBri-reserve and have an in-depth conversation with a shaman. Volunteering should be mutually beneficial for the environment and you! That is why we do activities and tours on Friday and leave the weekends for you to use the beach house and relax on the beach.


  • Be a Wildlife Sanctuary ranger, monitor animals in the rainforest, have physical contact with wildlife in the farm, the sanctuary and at the local Rescue Center.
  • Lose yourself in the beauty of nature and enjoy exploring Costa Rica during our tours and your leisure time down at the most beautiful beaches of Costa Rican Caribbean side.
  • Teach at a local school, get to know alternative constructions.
  • Live and work within a remote indigenous village, learn from a traditional Awá Shamán (an ethnobotanical indigenous doctor), gain real farm work skills.
  • We speak fleunte English, Spanish, German and Japanese, and even some BriBri! To improve your communication skills you will learn some Spanish during your time here.


8:00 am- The volunteers eat breakfast together in the living room of the main house of Planet One World.

9:00 am- there is a brief introduction to the day's tasks. Depending on the size of the group, the volunteers will be divided into teams all led by one of the staff.

Daily tasks on the farm include feeding the animals and harvesting fruits and vegetables, maintenance of agricultural facilities as well as the construction of new facilities or permaculture planting grounds.

12:00 - there is lunch that is followed by a break.

2:30 pm- the group is again in the living room to review the afternoon tasks. Working in the Wildlife Refuge includes tasks as scientific studies, installation of tracking cameras, maintenance of camps and park ranger trails in the refuge as well as the ranger training at which the volunteers learn how to move in the rainforest, how to read traces and how to react to different kind of animals.

5:00 pm- Volunteers are done for the day and can enjoy there leisure time. Around 6:30 - 7:00 pm- Dinner is served. Most of the time all volunteers are talking and playing in the living room or doing sports in the little gym.


Working hours Monday to Thursday: 9:00 - 12:00 / 2:30 - 5:00 PM

Friday is tour day or an excursion to know the culture and the diverse nature of the Caribbean of Costa Rica.

Saturday and Sunday: there is the possibility of sleeping down in the house in Playa Negra (1km from the old port). So volunteers can enjoy the beaches and the Caribbean nightlife.

What's Included
More info on what's included:

Activities: each Friday is activity time. Waterfalls, shaman visit, sleeping in tipis and rafting in the indigenous reserve, jungle day trips, barbecue at the beach.
Good communication: Ken the founder speaks fluently German, Spanish, English and Japanese.

What's Not Included
Airport Transfers
Domestic Airfare
SIM cards
Travel Insurance
More info on what's not included:

If you decide to use our offer to sleep in the beach town on the weekends you have to take care of your own food.
You have to have a foreign health insurance.

At Planet One World, we have 2 different accommodations, you can read about the differences below.


Wooden house, Western-style toilettes, normal showers, balcony (in the morning you can see many hummingbirds or toucans, sometimes monkeys), shared kitchen, living room with sofas, no heating (not occupied).


600 meters from the main house, stone house, western style toilettes, normal showers, shared kitchen, terrace, no heating (not occupied), living room.


It's local cuisine with organic food from the farm. Rich, beans, salat, a lot of different vegetables, meat. Planning of a construction of a pizza oven is in progress.


It is full dining, 3 meals per day, and all the fruits they can find on the farm. If the volunteers decide to leave the farm to go to the beach or even to sleep at the beach house, they have to take care of themselves.

You will leave a big impact. Strengthening the indigenous communities by contributing with your work and your interest in their culture and way of life. You protect a high biodiverse nature reserve where endangered animals and plants will find a long-term home and we won't stop there. Our vision is to protect as much nature as possible. We further try to convince more private owners to join our private Los Guardianes Wildlife Refuge.

Additionally, we hope that the impact will also affect you. We will make an effort to give you a good sustainable living education. Being aware of these things you are a big part of the overall impact you will leave and also get by volunteering at Planet One World.



2 Weeks
$870 USD
3 Weeks
$1280 USD
4 Weeks
$1650 USD


Puerto Limón
Costa Rican Colón
86 F / 70 F
88 F / 72 F
88 F / 72 F
86 F / 70 F
Limon International Airport
( LIO )

Puerto Limon epitomizes true Costa Rican Pura Vida lifestyle. This town is not a touristy destination and as such, it has maintained more of its roots, which are mainly Afro-Caribbean.

Hosted by Planet One World

Planet One World is a permaculture farm with a private tropical rainforest refuge, called “Los Guardianes”. Our mission consists of two parts. Protect nature and educate on how we can coexist with our environment by working with it and not against....
Hannes Wackerbarth, Planet One World, Costa Rica, Agroecological Farming & Wildlife Protection
Marketing & Sales
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based on 22 reviews
  • Impact 9.3
  • Support 9.6
  • Fun 9.9
  • Value 9.4
  • Safety 9.5
Showing 1 - 15 of 22
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Yes, I recommend this program

Garden of eden

Butterflies, goats, avocado trees and bananas. Sounds like the beginning of a fantasy story. But actually, there is such a place really in Central Costa Rica, or more precisely, at Planet One World where Ken and his family live. I was there for a week with my gooversea program called Ocean College. And I have to say I've traveled a lot, but that was really one of the most beautiful places. Not only the nature, but also the way Ken and his family took care of the nature and animals on the farm, was nice to experience. During the week I learned from Ken how to work with the machete, how to behave and protect the rainforest. He also showed us how to best utilize the raw materials they extract from nature. We were taught and shown a lot, without a lot of bells and whistles, but just as they live there. I felt less like a tourist than an explorer and would recommend it to anyone who wants that feeling too.

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Would definitely do it again

Last year I spended some time with Ken and his family in the rainforest at Planet One World with my school Ocean College. I was overwhelmed! Our room had a balcony from which we could see at the nearby trees where howler monkeys were jumping around. His wife made delicious and home-cooked meals for us each day, so we were always well-fortified for our extensive, interesting and beautiful walks through the rainforest. He showed us how to deal with the machete, showed us various Native American rituals with his Native American helper Alfonso and we saw innumerable animals: monkeys, sloths, snakes, beautiful colorful butterflies. I found it particularly interesting how he manages this vast area, cares for his animals, protects the area from poachers and grows and processes their own food. I think it is really a great project, I would definitely go to him again and live with him and his family!

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Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing time, lifechanging experience

The project "Planet One World" is primarily about protecting and reestablishing sensitive rainforest areas at the carribbean coast, near the village Puerto Viejo de Talamanca. I began my 6 month stay in the end of 2016.
Me and one other german guy where the only volunteers by that time. Our tasks included among others patrols through the forest and taking care of animals and farm, which is located in the middle of the beautiful wildlife territory. Also we set up cameratraps, built a camp in the woods and marked the borders of the protected property with selfmade signs.
Most of the work was physical and quite exhausting, respecting the hot and muggy weather conditions. Since the project was very familial, we, the volunteers, got involved in a variety of different tasks and activities and a lot of responsibility was put in our hands. Also i felt that i was in really good hands with Ken (Carsten), his family and Adolfo, the rainforest expert and worker on the farm. From the beginning on, everyone made us feel welcome and quickly we became part of the team.
In between the work, we enjoyed many different recreational acitivities, frum surfing to meeting locals in the bars of Puerto Viejo to personal Muay Thai lessons with Ken and many more.
If we had any problem, we could always talk to someone and the hierarchy in the project was flat. The nature was overwhelmingly beautiful and living right in the middle of it and in harmony with it changed me.
The experiences i made are priceless and i would never want to miss them.

What would you improve about this program?
This program is still in an early stage of development, meaning it basically needs help on different levels. First of course there is the need for volunteers that are motivated to work locally for change (i really reccommend doing that). Second of all it needs to become more professional; people who professionally do something that could help the project (If you think it could, contact Carsten Tiemann), should work together with them. Also Planet One World needs to be more connected with other projects and volunteer distribution organizations and generally presence in the internet could be higher.
Of course money donations will also always help funding equipment or paying local workers.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

fun fun fun

Crazy Nightwalks

A friend of mine was at Los Gardianes 3 years ago and recommended it to me. Since I am studying Spanish at university and had many seminar on Central and South America I wanted to go to Costa Rica so bad. So of course I visited Planet One and Ken. I was totally overwhelmed. Particulary the walks at night were incedable. When you see nothing and you are in a totally new enviroment it is like a concert for your senses. I also really enjoyed the educational part. At first I didn’t know what to expect but in the end I learned so many new things and i actually realized how important the work is at Planet One World. I have never experienced a Ceremony with a shaman, but thanks tot he BriBri ritual I got to an insight to local culture. It was really amazing. Like my friend, I can only recommend a Visit to Planet One Worl and Los Guardianes

Yes, I recommend this program

Sharing is caring

Shareing is Caring 😊
For me it was something totally new working on a farm. It was a bit exaughsting, but Ken and Adolfo were so good teachers and let us now the importance of what we were doing. We had contact to the BriBri culture and also through rafting on the river we got to know the enviroment and the untouched nature. In the end I was happy to get a understanding of how important it is to support such projects to maintain nature like it is. Especially that local culture and animals and plants can further exist. I have a really great respect of what Plante One World is doing and also Ken, Horensio, Adolfo and the other volunteers.They shared so much with us.
All these impressions were quite overwhelming and I am happy to share them here with you. Go to Planet One World, I can recommend it honestly. This will be an adventure you never forget in your live. Sharing is Caring 😊

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Best volunteer Program

Planet One World is the real Costa Rica. So many different experiences. From local cultures tot he touristic part in our leisure time on the weekends at the beaches. Puerto Viejo is a really nice hippie travel village. You’ll find a lot of „artesania“ as well as great food and relaxed dudes. The program of One World was really varied and I never got bored. I liked working in the wildlife refuge more. The ranger training fulfilled everything I expected and now I am confident in walking through the rainforest as I know how to move and how to react to different possible situations. Once we found an injured tucan which we brought back to the farm to bring him back to life. So i learned all the process of reintroducing a animal back into the wild. After one week on the farm I knew pretty well what to do and Ken gave me a lot of responsibility. I met awesome people from around the world and the accommodation was perfect, especially the living room where we hang out most of the time! The house was clean and had everything I needed and I never felt unsafe. The food was excellent and I really enjoyed all the organic meals cooked by Jury. The activities we did were just great, Ken and his staff are doing an excellent job and they know the area like their own pocket.

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Yes, I recommend this program

One big family

The one thing that I really enjoyed the most was that I was able to teach. After beeing tought so many things by Ken and his family, how to coexist with nature and the enviroment, how to pay attention to every tiny deatil, that everything is built on eachother I was glad to finally give something back. For sure I enjoyed the kayaking, and the nightwalks, not to forget this tasty food, mhhh 😊 but after expieriencing so much warmheartedness and genuine hospitality for which I’m so greatfull I really really wanted to give back something, and teaching the kids gave me the feeling of doing something good. It is like one big family and I feel like part of this family now. Thank you so much, i had a really wonderful time and everything i was able to learn will be part of my whole life :-) this experience gave me a lot opportunity of progress...

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Get there - stay there

I had a great time when i went there in 2016. It is a lot of input you have to deal with but ist great to learn about so many new things. I have never worked on a farm before but Ken and the others were good advisors. And in the middle of the jungle there are so many things and noises I have never seen or heard before. It’s fascinating. I really enjoyed my time there, especially the trips in the boats and the nightwalks – unbelievable how many animals are active at night. I really enjoyed the time I spend at One World. I thought that I saw a lot by travelling asia and south america but Costa Rica was special. It’s hard to describe what I mean. It’s that incredible deep old magical nature down at the beach and up in the rainforest, it really blew my mind and I would go again any time again!

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Shaping myself and feeling real nature.

My name is Rasmus and I spent 7 active months with another volunteer (until Mai 2017) in the “Los Guardianes Program” on Planet One World (Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica).

After weeks of internet research I luckily encountered the German environment protection organization “Tropica Verde e.V.” which collaborated with the project.
The main comparative advantage to the other projects in Costa Rica is that its affordable, unique and you are actually useful.

The projects aim is to protect a huge terrain of rainforest in an especially endangered zone in the the costarican south.
Mainly I participated in rainforest patrols&monitoring, sustainable farm work and ecotourism.
We used camera tramps to photograph hunters and wild animals and built camps in the rainforest.
On the farm we learned about sustainable farming concepts and helped keep everything running.
We introduced interested research workers and ecotourists to the project and took care of them.
We further helped to promote the project via internet and reported our activities to Tropica Verde.

The arrival was easy, I got picked up at the bus station and was welcomed warmly.
I lived with Ken (the owner), his native indigenous family and co-worker and the other volunteer.
After the security introduction about farm and forest work we were immediately 100% involved into all activities.
They put a lot of trust in their volunteers and literately have an open ear for you 24/7.

The work is both physically and mentally demanding because its hard work and you get a lot of responsibilities.
This is rewarded by superclose contact to nature, personal Spanish and Muay Thai training, trips to the beach/indigenous reserve/Eco communities, relaxing weekends in backpacker town Puerto Viejo…it’s impossible to sum it up here.

Reviewing my time there it strongly formed my personality and consciousness, I would always do it again.

Here is a clip we took during our time below.

What would you improve about this program?
The program always needs help.
That could be financial aid - but mainly manpower.
On the one hand it needs to scale up. Therefore a constant involvement of volunteers is needed.
On the other hand it needs to professionalize. Therefore highly qualified assistance is necessary, especially from people with (charity) entrepreneurship background, ecotourism, technical/IT skills and scientific background.

Talk to the owner Ken (Carsten Tiemann), you can figure out together how you can get involved best.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Welcome to the Jungle

Three years ago I took a study break and decided to take part at this volunteer program. It was my first time in Costa Rica and I was not really sure what to expect, as there hadn't been any reviews about this program. So now I am happy to share my experiences with you - because my time at the farm was definitively one of the best in my entire life!

The mission is as simple as it is important: We tried to do our bests to protect the Los Guardianes - a tropical rainforest and one of the most beautiful places you'll ever see. For me it was my first time in a jungle and i fell in love immediately! Every morning there was a meeting where we discussed our daily tasks. Tasks were various so it never got boring and it is kind of difficult to sum it up. Of course you should not have any problems with manual work, because sometimes it can be exhausting. But when you see your work at the end of the day and you know that you are helping to preserve one of the most beautiful places on earth, you know that it was worth it. We also had contact with the BriBri, indigenous people that are living in the jungle, which was very interesting for me as well!

All in all, I totally can recommend this program to everyone who is looking for an incredible and unforgetable time amid the tropical rainforest of Costa Rica!

Yes, I recommend this program

Lifechangeing Experience

What drives people to volunteer in a programm abroad? This was a question I asked myself a few years ago. I’m from Newcastle upon Tyne in Northern England and I had just gratuated from school. My best friend, Ben, and I were sick of the noisy city life and as many others we wanted to see more of the world before starting work life or studying and somehow we wanted tomake a change. I was so pleased that we chose going to Costa Rica. Never ever have I experienced such genuine hospitality, care and lust of passing on knowledge. Participating in this volunteer project has probably changed my life. It was beautiful to learn about other cultures, especially the cooking sessions were great. Also, Ben and I had no clue of Spanish language. But Ken and his family had patience and now I‘m a Spanish-pro =D. I guess seeing nature in its purest form, the smell, the colours, the noises, the people(s)! – basically the total contrary of our life in England, has somewhat opened my eyes and made clear how important it is to preserve, restore and promote nature. And Ken, his family and Planet One World are doing their best of fullfilling these aims! It is totally worth a trip. Thank you Planet One World, thank you Costa Rica!
P.s.: The food is just delicious ;)

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

6 moving month

I have been there for half a year in 2013 and my time there had a major impact on my life decisions. I still feels like a part of my family now is in Costa Rica and I know that I will always be welcome if I come back (What I already did and will do again in the future). It is not always easy to live on a farm far away in the jungle. Work can be hard and when it comes to nature conservation, back throws are normal and you need a long breath. Now that I am in a master program for international nature conservation, I can tell you: That is normal. Compared to the founds, the impact of the work at finca one world cannot be overestimated. The private nature reserves that we established in 2013 is an important stepping stone for wildlife between the Manzanillo National Park in the south and the Indigenous Reserve Talamanca in the north. Without the commitment of Ken, his family and neighbors and all the volunteers over the last years, this reserve would not have been able to survive as a whole. Economic interests are growing and illegal logging and hunting are still common. I think my work there really had an impact. Moreover, if you decide to go there please keep in mind: It’s also one of the most beautiful places on the planet direct in the heart of the Caribbean!

What would you improve about this program?
The biggest problem is man/ womanpower. More volunteers and long-term participants are the most important parts for the project. In addition, more support from the political side for such project would absolutely help a lot.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program


It was awesome to be a part of such an impactful project. Ken, his family, Adolfo and Hortensio are such sweet persons. They teach you everything they know about farming the animals and the plant on the farm and in the refuge. I saw so many animals I even didn’t know they exist. The farm work was always quite fun with the other volunteers and a joking Ken. You have to image it more as practical lessons. You will do all the stuff on the farm and Ken or Adolfo is explaining everything to you. I was so impressed by the tequnices on the farm. Imagen creating electricity out of pig shit 😉. Beside the farm and refuge work Ken really wants to educate about the environment. We went to a school and did a workshop there or went to the BriBri community to help them with some projects. There we met Don Lizandro the shaman of the BriBri’s with whom we celebrated a BriBri ceremony. It was so exciting. And of course the tours and activities we did were just fun and we really saw a lot of the beautiful nature. On the weekends we stayed down near Puerto Viejo at a little house of One World. I really loved the rasta-hippie culture on the beach and it was the perfect alternation. I can recommend it from the bottom of my heart.

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

One world Costa Rica

We had a great time in the rainforest. We have been there in October 2017. When we got there, we directly got a private tour from Ken. He showed us his property. He has shown us his property and how he cares for himself and his family. That’s really impressive. The next day,early in the morning, we did a rainforest tour. We saw many animals, like monkeys and frogs. It is totally wort it, to visit one world Costa Rica.

Yes, I recommend this program

Worth a trip

During my time with fabi and fin I learned a lot about the beautiful nature and wildlife of puerto viejo talamanca. During our trips to the jungel or national parks or just kayaking at the local river they explained me so much and had a great knowledge about the animals and especially reptiles of this beautiful country. I warmly reccomand to go and check out how working for RARG can enrich your life and enlarge your knowledge. Thanks again for this amazing experience.


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