Summer Costa Rica Program

Costa Rica is a land of immense environmental and cultural diversity. Lush tropical rainforests, towering volcanoes, steep-sided mountains, and extended coastlines inspire unique cultural expression. Over one-quarter of this nation’s land is set aside as protected habitat. It’s the perfect place to focus our inquiry into Spanish, sustainability and conservation!


Hike through the rainforest while staying at an eco-retreat by a river.

Study Spanish with local teachers in a lovely river valley, taking time over the weekend to raft the Rio Pacuare.

Learn about permaculture while working on an organic farm on Costa Rica’s pacific coast.  

Engage in service learning by supporting sea turtle conservation and wildlife monitoring efforts on the Nicoya Peninsula.

sea turtle conservation with student holding turtle eggs

Program Details

Female student smiling while repainting a bright blue wall
Three people smiling together during a lesson about coffee farming in Guatemala


4 weeks

Program dates

Summer 2021

Group Size

2 Overseas Educators and up to 12 students


Our typical student is between 17-22, though we sometimes work with students slightly outside that range depending on circumstances.

Scholarships & College Credit

Learn more about: Scholarships

Course offered on this program:
GEOG (299): Geography of Globalization in Food

Language Requirements




Program tuition includes all food, accommodations, scheduled program activities, and international travel insurance for the duration of the program. International airfare and spending money are extra. International airfare estimated at $1400 - $1600.

About Our Costa Rica Program

A land of social, cultural, and economic intricacies, Costa Rica provides a rich environment for in-depth exploration of how communities are engaged in common efforts to live in a more sustainable way.

Beginning in Chilamate, a small town known for it’s beautiful river and access to some of the best-preserved premontane rainforest in the country, we will focus on getting to know each other and the program and orienting ourselves to best practices for safe and healthy travel.  We will also spend time hiking in the rainforest, swimming in the beautiful Sarapiqui river, and even have a chance to soar through the trees on a canopy zipline.

Group of gap year students and their mountain guide pose in a line on a dirt trail while climbing a volcano
Smiling female student wearing a chefs hat and displaying a tray of baked goods

Dive into our study of Spanish in inquiry into sustainability and conservation, we travel to Turrialba, Costa Rica where we will study Spanish with local teachers in small groups throughout the mornings.  In the afternoons, we’ll have opportunities for hiking, swimming, exploring, and continuing to learn about Costa Rican history and culture.  Over the weekend, we’ll have a chance to raft the Rio Pacuare - one of the top spots in the world for experiencing white water rafting!    

The next stop on our journey is the Nicoya Peninsula.  We’ll head to a farm and educational center on the coast where we’ll focus our learning on organic agricultural practices as well as participate in sea turtle conservation, wildlife monitoring, and reforestation efforts.

Students and locals working together to repaint a wall while using stencils
Group of gap year students smiling while on a covered boat ride

Our last stop is near Orosi, in Costa Rica’s central valley.  We’ll head to a private retreat, where we’ll have our last few days to reflect and celebrate all that we’ve learned and accomplished during the program.  

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