After arriving in San José and spending the first day in Alajuela, we’re off to Las Tumbas to begin our journey as field biologists. Go explore the local flora and fauna on a nature hike with the tropical sounds of the local wildlife as our soundtrack. Jump right into the adventure with a thrilling rappel down Diamante Waterfall, which is guaranteed to get your adrenaline pumping, and an overnight stay in Casa de Piedras, a breathtaking experience few will ever have. Go for a swim in the refreshing pools below, and get ready to begin your conservation work in the days ahead.
Prepare to be serenaded by the unique sounds of birds in the trees as you travel through the jungle and past remote villages on your way to the nature reserve outside Chirripó National Park. This reserve is home to an abundance of life, and its fertile grounds make it a hot spot for field biology research. Professional scientists will demonstrate the importance of reforestation and we’ll volunteer our time helping to transform an old cattle pasture back into a lush cloud forest. Set up a ‘camera trap’ and hope to catch a glimpse of the elusive ocelot, puma or tapir, and learn about how biologists are using the camera data. At night, kick back and relax in a hammock or take a turn making dinner using the skills you learned in your cooking class. Even go to a trout farm where you’ll catch, grill and eat your dinner. The work you do here is meaningful, not only to long-term rainforest conservation and ongoing research projects, but also to wherever your interest in field biology takes you next.
Pack up and prepare for the next stop on our adventure. Travel from tree canopies to ocean waves as we make our way to the Osa Peninsula. We are in one of the most biodiverse places on earth, so over the next several days we continue our focus on ecology and conservation. Explore river and mangrove systems to learn about the interaction between freshwater and saltwater. Help track predators and prey with a camera trap system. Learn about habitat use, distribution of wildlife and how human interaction affects different ecosystems. The peninsula is also a world famous location to learn about sea turtles. Practice population monitoring and learn about the threats to Costa Rica’s sea turtle populations.
Travel to a rural Costa Rica beach and meet an organization dedicated to protecting nesting sea turtles in the area. Over the next several days, spend early mornings and late nights scouting out sea turtle tracks and marking new nests. Help promote sustainable coastal development in the area so sea turtles can continue to call these beaches home. Study sea turtle ecology including life history, species identification, and anatomy before heading out for well deserved afternoon activities!
Celebrate your new knowledge and skills with thrilling jungle activities. See the lush jungle from new perspectives- the tree tops and winding river! Ziplining and whitewater rafting class III rapids is an exciting way to close out your adventure.