Volunteers visit Arenal volcano in their free time while volunteering in Costa Rica.

Volunteering in Costa Rica

Support communities and wildlife on our volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica

Volunteer in Costa Rica and learn the true meaning of "pura vida" (pure living). You'll support community development and environmental protection in this vibrant Latin American country. Volunteer abroad programs in Costa Rice represent an opportunity to immerse yourself in a rich, diverse culture by living and working in Central America.

Volunteer work in Costa Rica can include:

  • Volunteer to teach English in Costa Rica to improve the career prospects of disadvantaged children
  • Nurture the early development of young children in Costa Rica's daycare centres
  • Volunteer in Costa Rica with animals including birds, butterflies, and bats.  

There are also family volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica. Children under 15 are welcome to join their parents on the Conservation Projects or to help with childcare in the daycare centres.

Our volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica are based in either Heredia or Barra Honda National Park. In both locations, our local staff will be on-had to guide and support you 24/7. Whether you're doing short-term volunteer work in Costa Rica or staying for longer, our staff will also help you to have the best experience possible.

With more than 25% of its land protected in national parks, Costa Rica is a nature lover’s paradise. It has everything from volcanoes to tropical rainforests, and magnificent waterfalls to beautiful sandy beaches. This small country is also renowned for its biodiversity and boasts an array of wildlife.

Projects available in Costa Rica

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1-3 of 8 Projects

A volunteer and staff member work together on a reforestation initiative during Conservation volunteering in Costa Rica.
Birds, Butterflies and Bats Conservation in Costa Rica
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  • Completely flexible dates
  • Anyone aged 16 or over can join
  • From 1 week
  • From £1,645
Projects Abroad volunteers planting seedlings during Conservation volunteering in Costa Rica for teenagers.
Conservation Volunteering in Costa Rica for Teenagers
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  • Fixed dates during school holidays
  • This project is only for 15-18 year olds
  • From 1 week
  • From £1,645
Children play on the swings under the supervision of a volunteer working with children in Costa Rica
Volunteer with Children in Costa Rica
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  • Completely flexible dates
  • Anyone aged 18 or over can join
  • From 1 week
  • From £1,370
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Can't find what you're looking for?

We have the expertise and staff on the ground to create a custom project for you, or simply help you find the best option.

Speak to one of our Costa Rica experts on:

01273 007 230


to start planning your project

Where we are based in Costa Rica

During your voluntary work in Costa Rica, you’ll be living in either Heredia or Barra Honda National Park. We have dedicated full-time staff in both locations, so you’ll have plenty of support no matter where you’re based.


Heredia is where most of our volunteer projects in Costa Rica are based. The city is situated in the heart of Costa Rica’s coffee-growing country. With its large student population and close proximity to the exciting capital city of San Jose, Heredia has an active cultural and social scene.

You can easily reach the impressive Poas and Irazu volcanoes on a day-trip from Heredia. Many other popular tourist destinations, such as Arenal volcano and Monteverde cloud forest, are only a bus ride away.

Be sure to ask locals about the concept of "pura vida" or "pure living": the unofficial motto of Costa Rica. Our volunteer abroad programmes are a chance to embrace a new lifestyle and there are few better opportunities to do this than in Heredia. Being a city, you'll have some of the luxuries you're used to, but expect to embrace a slower, more relaxed pace when arriving in Costa Rica.

Barra Honda

All our Conservation Projects in Costa Rica are based in Barra Honda National Park. You’ll be living and working at the wildlife reserve, which is about a 25-minute drive from the nearest town.

This location is ideal for you if you’re a nature lover looking to take a break from fast-paced daily life. Your free time will be filled with scenic hikes and board games with your fellow volunteers, with the lush forest as your backdrop. For the more adventurous, the network of underground caves and caverns is a highlight.

You'll find plenty of family volunteer opportunities in Barra Honda. Among young children arriving in Costa Rica with their parents, Conservation Volunteer Projects are the most popular. Being home to birds, bats, and butterflies, this is a safe way for kids to get involved and help protect these important species.

Airport pickup, flights and visas costa rica

When volunteering in Costa Rica, your arrival airport will be Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO). You will be met at the airport by a Projects Abroad staff member. You can find more detailed information on flights, arrival airports, orientation, and visas, on our Costa Rica Arrival Procedures page.

Next Steps

Safety and staff support

Your safety and security is our prime concern. We have many procedures and systems to ensure you have the support you need to enjoy your trip with peace of mind. Our Projects Abroad staff are available 24 hours a day to help, and will be on-hand to make sure you settle in well at your accommodation and placement. If you encounter any problems, they will be available to help at any time.

Find out more about safety and backup.

This placement is fully researched, safety audited, and risk assessed in accordance with the British Standard BS8848 for the Adventure Travel Sector.

Our accreditations