Volunteer in Costa Rica

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Costa Rica is a wonderful destination for both first-time and seasoned travelers. It's home to beautiful beaches, tropical rainforests, and some of the friendliest people on earth, while also being incredibly safe.

But for those who want to see another side of Costa Rica, volunteering in education, animal rescue, or sea turtle conservancy could be just the way to see Costa Rica from outside the tourist lens. Volunteering in this tropical country offers the experience of a lifetime by immersing you in local culture and customs and learning the true meaning of Pura Vida.

Photo Credit: Gabi Schiller

Costa Rica offers an excellent introduction to Latin America while also providing a diversity of places to visit for a nature lover with a strong democratic tradition. After Costa Rica's civil war, the army was abolished by the president in 1948. While Costa Rica is often considered one of the wealthier countries in the region, there are still numerous development problems such as deforestation, economic and gender inequalities and youth development issues as increasing numbers of undocumented immigrants from Nicaragua and other neighboring countries now call Costa Rica home.

Environmental Conservation & Working with Wildlife

While Costa Rica is famous for conserving vast parts of the country as national parks, there is a constant need for volunteers to get involved in their wildlife and conservation efforts. The most popular project in this field is working with the numerous sea turtle conservancy projects on both the Pacific and Atlantic coasts. Volunteers work to protect sea turtle eggs from poachers and environmental threats.

Other projects involve preserving and researching other areas of Costa Rica's wildlife -- especially in Costa Rica's rainforests.

Youth Development

Volunteer with youth development in Costa Rica -- both in San Jose and smaller cities -- by assisting with after-school programs, community centers, and sports coaching. Most projects will require you have a functional level of Spanish in this area.

Gender Equality

Unknown to many, sex trade has dramatically increased in Costa Rica. Victims need your help in recovering their lives.

Teaching English

Costa Ricans value English as a second language and native teachers are in high demand. Teaching positions vary and no experience is necessary, but previous experience and qualifications are always helpful.

Health and Safety in Costa Rica

No immunizations are required to go to Costa Rica. It is also safe to drink the water, one of the few Latin American countries where this is the case. Costa Rica is known to be one of the safer countries in Central America but you should never let your guard down, always secure your belongings and be aware of surroundings, especially in bus stations and in markets. Remember, as a foreigner you always stand out.


Costa Rican tourist visas are not required for citizens of the United States for a stay of up to 90 days. For more information visit Visa HQ. All travelers to Costa Rica will have to pay a fee upon exiting.

Contributed by Eliza Wethey


Displaying 136 - 150 of 190
Costa Rica
CR Volunteer
Volunteering in fine arts & physical education in San Ramon, Costa Rica allows children who normally do not have the...
Costa Rica
Proyecto Montezuma
Proyecto Montezuma has a variety of hands-on volunteer programs providing each of it's volunteers with an enriching volunteer...
Costa Rica
Working Abroad Projects
Volunteer with sea turtles in Costa Rica as one of our marine conservation volunteers, and join this Olive Ridley turtle...
Costa Rica
Abriendo Mentes
Classroom teaching assistants play an extremely important role at Abriendo Mentes. These volunteers spend 5 days a week...
Costa Rica
Planet Conservation
The most important requirements for the volunteer program are:hard working skills,ecologically sensitive,willing to learn...
Costa Rica
Planet Conservation
The magazine in which you can volunteer deals with the lifestyle in Costa Rica’s South Pacific and represent the area of...
Costa Rica
Osa Conservation
In 2002 Osa Conservation developed and begun it’s Sea Turtle Conservation program in order to protect the four nesting...
Costa Rica
South America Inside
Over 25% of Costa Ricas total landmass are protected areas. In one of 26 National Parks you will have the opportunity to...
Costa Rica
Cooperating Volunteers
Volunteers in Costa Rica may participate in any of our projects. Together with our alliance we cooperate with local projects...
Costa Rica
Students Offering Support
In Pavones, a community located in the province of San Jose, in Costa Rica, SOS volunteers will work with a local...
Culture Go Go
Stay with a local host in Latin America for free and immerse yourself in the local culture. In return simply help your host...
Costa Rica
Working Abroad Projects
Volunteer to teach at a small non-profit elementary school located in Puerto Jimenéz, Costa Rica. The main goal of the school...