Sample Itinerary 1
Spend a week participating in service and adventure activities in beautiful Costa Rica. Its rainforests, volcanic peaks, and two coasts make Costa Rica one of the most beautiful nations in Central America. Home to some of the most biodiverse areas on the planet, Costa Rica is famed for its natural environment and commitment to preserving it.
Day 1: Welcome to Costa Rica!
Arrive into San Jose Airport (SJO) and meet your Program Leaders who will be with you for the duration of the program. Head to the hotel and settle in, relax after your long flight, and join the group for an orientation discussion about the week ahead, expectations for your adventure, and an introduction to the local culture.
Day 2: Drive to Fortuna and Cultural Presentation
Wake up early for breakfast at the hotel and head North towards La Fortuna. Enjoy the beautiful and scenic ride through the cloud forest to finally arrive in the hometown of the famous Arenal Volcano. After lunch your Program Leaders will spend some time getting to know you better and learn about your expectations for the trip.
This first evening, your host village will share a cultural presentation including local music and dance, and some stories about the community you are collaborating with. This is a beautiful night of sharing and learning, and will give you lots of inspiration for your next few days in town.
Day 3: Community Infrastructure Projects
Contribute to service initiatives in the villages around La Fortuna. Split your time between morning and afternoon service sessions. Choose from a variety of ongoing service initiatives designed and monitored by Inbound staff in cooperation with local community leaders. Projects will focus on community infrastructure development, educational facility improvement, and environmental initiatives and will vary by day and the community-initiated projects. Our team will provide you more details about your projects closer to the date of travel; typically you will contribute to a few projects over the course of a few days work to see varied sides of community projects.
Day 4: Community Infrastructure Projects and Hot Springs!
During your second day on service projects, you will jump right in and improve your technique and understanding of what the projects mean to the community. These are projects that would take years for communities to fundraise for, and they are contributing a lot to the sense of pride and shared space for members of the village. Work one last full day of service to earn a really nice reward, because this evening the group will have an early dinner and then will have a very chill and relaxing time in the natural hot springs, made from naturally heated volcanic water. Arenal Volcano is known for these hot springs!
Day 5: Zipline through the rainforest and hike in a National Park!
Get ready to zipline through the rainforest canopy! You’ll ride an open-air gondola up to an observation deck for fantastic views of the Arenal Volcano and the Arenal Lake. From this area, you will start riding down on a zip line track stretching across canyons and in between treetops. This is the most thrilling zip line in the country!
In the afternoon the group will be hiking through the different trails of the Arenal Volcano National Park. Get really close to the lava tracks of its last eruption in 1968 and enjoy stunning views of this perfectly cone-shaped volcano. Spot wildlife while you walk along the trails and learn about Costa Rica’s flora and fauna with your local naturalist guide. During the evening a local salsa dance instructor will join the group to teach you the basic steps of salsa, merengue, bachata and other latin dances.
Day 6: Rafting Adventure!
Get suited up, grab your paddles, and hit the rapids of the Sarapiquí river! As you raft down the river, enjoy the rich greenery and fun rapids that have earned the Sarapiquí a reputation as one of the most enjoyable whitewater in the world. Stop along the way for a buffet picnic on the riverbanks. At the pull-out point, you will be able to shower, change your clothes and make your own sandwiches for lunch before going back to your hotel.
After getting some rest, taking a nap and refreshing, head out to the town of La Fortuna to do some souvenir shopping and eat an ice cream or drink a smoothie with your friends.
Days 7: Chocolate tour and back to the capital city
Spend your last morning in La Fortuna visiting a cocoa plantation, where you will learn the history of this delicious plant, and will have lots of fun making your own chocolate recipes during the all-you-can-eat activity at the end of the tour. Eat one last lunch before you start driving back through the rainforest and mountains to San Jose. Stop along the way for snacks and take some pictures of the breathtaking views of cloud forests. Then join your group for a big last dinner celebration in the country’s capital.
Day 8: ¡Adiós, Costa Rica!
We hope the people you’ve met, perspectives you’ve gained and lessons you’ve learned will serve you well as you head home to use your new Spanish skills in your own community. Your Program Leaders will take you to the airport for your departure as you say goodbyes and reflect on your adventure.