A Gap Year in Costa Rica

Why go backpacking in Costa Rica?

Costa Rica is a gap year paradise, and offers backpackers myriad tropical travel experiences. From Caribbean and Pacific beaches to rainforests, temperate forests, high mountains, volcanoes and marshy lowlands, backpacking in Costa Rica has it all, whether you want to relax or have an epic adventure.

This is an awesomely forward-thinking and progressive country. They abolished their army decades ago, and regularly place highly on global quality-of-life indexes and leagues tables for health, education, environment and democracy within Latin America. Costa Rica has also been rated one of the ‘greenest’ countries on Earth, and its government intends to become the world’s first carbon-neutral country.

Things to do in Costa Rica

Check out our current top picks

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Volunteer with Kids in Costa Rica

from £945.00

14 - 84 days

Immerse yourself in Costa Rican culture when you travel to Quepos and volunteer on a community project helping disadvantaged children.

Volunteer in Turtle Conservation in Costa Rica

from £570.00

14 - 168 days

Volunteer on the Turtle Conservation volunteer project in Costa Rica. Located in any one of four amazing coastal locations.

Costa Rica Wildlife Conservation

from £695.00

7 - 180 days

Carry out groundbreaking survey work in Costa Rica's remote habitats and help combat the effects of Global Warming as you...

Jaguar Conservation in Costa Rica

from £1,145.00

14 days

Discover the rainforests of Costa Rica and assist in the protection of the elusive and endangered Jaguar.

Teaching & Community Internship

from £1,719.00

60 - 140 days

Teaching English in local schools will give you a real insight into Costa Rican culture. It's a world of adventure...

Costa Rica Sea Turtle Conservation

from £1,145.00

14 days

Volunteering at a sea turtle conservation project in Playa Matapalo with tours of a sugar cane & coffee plantation at...

Volunteer with Kids in Costa Rica

from £945.00

14 - 84 days

Immerse yourself in Costa Rican culture when you travel to Quepos and volunteer on a community project helping disadvantaged children.

Teach English in Costa Rica

from £900.00

180 - 360 days

Get paid to teach English in Costa Rica with an accredited TEFL certification & lifetime job placement assistance from International...

International Educator Program

from £7,700.00

90 days

Helping small communities revive ecological regions. Protecting native biodiversities. Helping to break the cycle of poverty. Travelling with a difference,...

Volunteer Expeditions in Central America

from £2,350.00

35 days

#MakeItHappen in Nicaragua & Costa Rica for 5, 7 or 10 weeks with Raleigh International.

Latest advice and inspiration for Costa Rica

Check out what our writers have been up to in Costa Rica

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Why go?

It’s a great place to volunteer on your gap year, with loads of options to teach or work on conservation projects with big cats, monkeys and turtles. Adventurous travellers will not be disappointed either; you can surf, go white-water rafting, wildlife spotting, hiking and trekking.

Costa Rica, which literally translates as ‘Rich Coast’, is an ideal one-country destination or an amazing place to visit as part of a trip through Central America.

Please note: It’s now a legal requirement that all volunteers must obtain a scientific permit to conduct research within Tortuguero National Park. A number of documents will be required to apply for this permit. If you’re interested in volunteering in Tortuguero National Park, please ask one of our consultants for more information.

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