Costa Rica Sea Turtle Conservation
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From £609, 1 week, Costa Rica Trip code: CRST

  • Adventure 2 out of 5
  • Relaxation 3 out of 5
  • Culture 3 out of 5
Costa Rica Sea Turtle ConservationCosta Rica Sea Turtle ConservationCosta Rica Sea Turtle Conservation

Trip Highlights

  • Releasing tiny baby turtles into the sea
  • Helping to construct a turtle hatchery
  • Collecting eggs you find on the beach, and taking them to the hatchery (“vivero”) for protection
  • Searching for marked turtles and collecting data
  • Live on the pacific coast of central America with it’s beautiful beaches

Trip Summary

See full itinerary

For the turtle species to continue to exist, much help is needed from both local communities and volunteers. One way in which you can help is to assist during the turtle-nesting season, and this turtle conservation project in Costa Rica provides you with the opportunity to do just that.

 

At present, only a tiny number of the eggs laid will grow to become an adult turtle. Human interference cannot be held solely responsible; however, our behaviour has greatly diminished turtle population sizes.


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What will I be doing?

  • Project Aim (1 - 4 weeks)

  • Volunteer Role (1 - 4 weeks)

Project Aim: 1 - 4 weeks

Next Leg

Destination info

Costa Rica is a very popular destination, with attractions that appeal to all tastes it is easy to see why. Costa Rica's national parks are its greatest glory, resulting from a desire to conserve the outstanding natural beauty and encouragement of eco-tourism.


These parks contain some of the best campsites in the world. The country has a stunning variety of landscapes, microclimates plus flora and fauna, making it a haven for nature lovers.


You will be based at one of two project locations for your programme, this will be decided by our in-country team and is dependent on the project needs at the time of your visit:
 

 

  • Buena Vista, located 3km from Samara, Guanacaste
  • Playa Matapalo, in the province of Puntarenas about one hour from Quepos
  • Location: Buena Vista or Playa Matapalo

The aim of the project is to help protect and preserve some natural nesting sites that do not hold an official category of protection from the Costa Rican Government.

 

Four different species of sea turtles frequent the Pacific coast of Costa Rica - Lora (olive ridley), Negra (green turtle), Carey (hawksbill) and Baula (leatherback turtle).

 

These species are in danger of extinction as a result of various human activities such as infrastructure development, light pollution, transportation of vehicles and the capture of adult turtles.

 

This means it is increasingly important to help conserve nesting sites, which are crucial to the continued existence of the turtles; by volunteering on this amazing programme you will be able to play your part in securing the future of these fascinating creatures.

 

 

Volunteer Role: 1 - 4 weeks

Destination info

Costa Rica is a very popular destination, with attractions that appeal to all tastes it is easy to see why. Costa Rica's national parks are its greatest glory, resulting from a desire to conserve the outstanding natural beauty and encouragement of eco-tourism.


These parks contain some of the best campsites in the world. The country has a stunning variety of landscapes, microclimates plus flora and fauna, making it a haven for nature lovers.


You will be based at one of two project locations for your programme, this will be decided by our in-country team and is dependent on the project needs at the time of your visit:

* Buena Vista, located 3km from Samara, Guanacaste
* Playa Matapalo, in the province of Puntarenas about one hour from Quepos

  • Location: Buena Vista or Playa Matapalo

During your time as a volunteer on this programme you may undertake various activities such as those listed below. These activities may depend on the project you are located at:

 

  • Helping to construct a turtle hatchery
  • Describing the nesting dynamics of the female sea turtles that arrive on the beach, enabling their protection for the next season
  • Protecting and closely monitoring the recovered eggs in the hatchery
  • Patrolling the beach to look for sea turtles and nests at night, on a rotational basis
  • Usually for two or four hours, however during the high season, the patrols could last up to four or five hours
  • Marking turtles that are nesting, trying to build a nest or returning to the ocean
    Searching for marked turtles and collecting data
  • Collecting the eggs you find on the beach, and taking them to the hatchery ("vivero") for protection
  • Gathering information on the whole process by monitoring the hatchery and keeping track of every event
  • Releasing "neonatos" (baby sea turtles) from the hatchery, by taking them to the beach and letting them go near the ocean
  • Helping with maintenance of the facilities of the project (the shelter), and ensuring the beach is kept clean during the day
  • Planting trees in different areas of the beach and town

Trip Notes Download

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Trip Notes include a full itinerary, country guides and travel advice on visas, money, insurance and the local weather. By filling in your details you'll also be kept updated on all the latest news, offers and stories on this particular trip. Happy reading!

What's included?

  • Accommodation
  • All meals during the project (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
  • Airport pick-up
  • Support from in-country co-ordinators
  • 24-hours emergency support number

What's not included?

  • All flights
  • Personal travel insurance
  • Visas
  • Return airport transfer
  • Local transport
  • Items of a personal nature including spending money

Additional Information & FAQs

Minimum age

Minimum age 17 years with parental consent, maximum dependent on health and fitness of potential participant.

 

Minimum numbers required on this trip

There are no minimum numbers on the trip.

Please note: you may be the only volunteer at your chosen project at any one time. If you have any questions about this, please feel free to contact us 

Accommodation

On arrival into Costa Rica, you will be taken to a hostel in Alajuela where you will spend your first two nights during your orientation.

 

Following this you will transfer to your project location, this will be decided by our in-country team, and is determined by the requirements of the project at the time of your visit.

 

Buena Vista: The accommodation at the project is very basic and rustic; however it is comfortable and has a great, relaxed atmosphere. There will be no electricity; however a shower and a bathroom are available (cold water only).

 

Matapalo: The accommodation at this project is also very basic with just cold water for showers, however there is electricity. Nearby there is a local supermarket, internet access and a number of local and international style restaurants.

 

Meals

There is an on-site cook at both locations who will prepare breakfast, lunch and dinner for you while at the project. Meals will mainly consist of beans, pasta, rice, meat, cereals and a variety of vegetables and seasonal fruits.

 

Is this trip for you?

You may be the only volunteer at your chosen project at any one time. However, you will still have the full support of your in-country team and those at the project. If you are looking for a group volunteering experience we have plenty of options for you to consider.

 

Orientation

Your orientation will be held in Alajuela on the first Monday of your stay, you will be collected from your accommodation at around 12.30pm and taken to the offices of our in-country team. 

 

During the orientation you will be given a welcome pack containing lots of useful information regarding your programme. Your orientation will cover:

 

  • Local culture – social norms, traditions and culture
  • Expected behaviour - safety whilst on the programme
  • Safety - areas and places to avoid, what to do in an emergency
  • Locations of important amenities - banks, hospitals, embassies
     

Advice & Safety

Throughout your programmes you will have the support and guidance of the programme co-ordinator and team. You will be provided with competent assistance and help with any questions or advice you may need during your stay.

 

You will be assigned a personal travel advisor who will co-ordinate your programme with you. Feel free to contact them at any time before you go, or when you are on your travels.

 

In addition, you will have access to a 24 hour emergency contact number so you can contact one of our UK staff at any time should you need to.

 

 

FAQ

1. I am 17 years old, can I take part on this placement?

Yes 17 years is fine.

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2. Is it ok to be a vegetarian?

Yes that's fine as the food is mainly beans, rice, vegetables and fruit.

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3. What are the start dates?

The 1st and 3rd Sunday of each month.

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4. What are the durations of this trip?

1 to 4 weeks.

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5. Do I have to know Spanish to take part on this placement?

It’s helpful to have a basic knowledge of Spanish. You can take part on a week’s Spanish school before you start your volunteer project.

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What will I see in Costa Rica?

16 photos

What other travellers thought

I've done this trip

Write review
Overall rating: (9/10) (4 reviews)
Costa Rica Sea Turtle Conservation

Shona Hathway - September 2013

How would you rate your overall experience?
(10/10)
Give us up to 10 words that sum up your experience: for example - "Great experience, made new friends, totally unforgettable!"

Wow what a wonderful country and being up close with turtles is amazing.

Please rate the service received from our team before departure
(6/10)
Please rate the accuracy of your pre-departure information
(6/10)
Please rate the service provided by the team in country
(10/10)
Please rate the accommodation during your stay
(10/10)
Please rate the worthwhileness of any volunteering in your trip if applicable.
(10/10)
Please rate your airport pickup (where applicable)
(10/10)
Please rate your in-country orientation
(6/10)
What were the highlights of your trip?

Working with the turtles, seeing the baby turtles come up through the sand. The amazing country, the wildlife - what an amazing country.

Do you have 3 top tips for future travellers?

Take bug spray, learn the language (if possible)

Would you travel with our company again?

yes

Would you recommend us?

Yes

Costa Rica Sea Turtle Conservation2013-09-09

Helen Lydia Tendai Katandawa - February 2012

How would you rate your overall experience?
(9/10)
Give us up to 10 words that sum up your experience: for example - "Great experience, made new friends, totally unforgettable!"

Absolutely fantastic experience, a complete learning curve, would definately do it again.

Please rate the service received from our team before departure
(10/10)
Please rate the service provided by the team in country
(9/10)
Please rate the accommodation during your stay
(7/10)
Please rate the worthwhileness of any volunteering in your trip if applicable.
(9/10)
What were the highlights of your trip?

Having the beach 100m in front of me and the jungle 200m behind. Being able to work with amazing animals in a fantastic location.

Do you have 3 top tips for future travellers?

1) Learn some spanish (trust me, you'll need it if only to have a small conversation). 2) Don't forget you're in the jungle, so be prepared for the humidity. 3) Take bite cream, the sand fleas at me alive!

Would you travel with our company again?

Yes

Would you recommend us?

Yes

Costa Rica Sea Turtle Conservation2012-02-24

Natalie Taylor - October 2011

How would you rate your overall experience?
(7/10)
Please rate the service received from our team before departure
(7/10)
Please rate the service provided by the team in country
(10/10)
Please rate the accommodation during your stay
(7/10)
Please rate the worthwhileness of any volunteering in your trip if applicable.
(10/10)
What were the highlights of your trip?

Volunteering on both the Caribbean and Pacific side was amazing, would go again if I could. Seeing baby turtles waddling to the sea, watching the big turtles lay eggs... completely unforgettable and worthwhile.

Would you travel with our company again?

No

Would you recommend us?

No

Costa Rica Sea Turtle Conservation2011-10-11

Jocelyn Lu - July 2011

How would you rate your overall experience?
(9/10)
Give us up to 10 words that sum up your experience: for example - "Great experience, made new friends, totally unforgettable!"

Unforgettable once in a lifetime experience, made new friends and enjoyed every moment!

Please rate the service received from our team before departure
(9/10)
Please rate the service provided by the team in country
(9/10)
Please rate the accommodation during your stay
(3/10)
Please rate the worthwhileness of any volunteering in your trip if applicable.
(10/10)
What were the highlights of your trip?

-releasing the baby sea turtles into the ocean -watching the sunrise during my hatchery watch -found some new friends from all over the world -peaceful and quiet beach surroundings dotted with the Costa Rica culture and foliage -learning about the culture and the nearby school

Do you have 3 top tips for future travellers?

-be prepared to go with the flow and laugh about it -while there, be open to new opportunities -treasure your time in another country

Would you travel with our company again?

Yes

Would you recommend us?

Yes

Costa Rica Sea Turtle Conservation2011-07-04

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