Location: Costa Rica
Duration: 1, 2 or 4 weeks
LEARN SPANISH & VOLUNTEER
Learn Spanish & Surf or Yoga in Santa Teresa – a jungle surf camp hidden in tropical forest yet within a roar of the Pacific Ocean
This program starts on the first and third Sunday of each month, so clients can ‘settle in’ before the program proper starts on Monday morning. As well as Spanish lessons and meaningful volunteering placements other programmed activities include hiking so you can explore and enjoy the beautiful hinterland of Nicoya Peninsula and get a real feel for the biodiversity of this special part of the world.
Your experience is based at ‘Jakera Jungle Surf Camp’ where we have created a jungle paradise complete with swimming pool overlooked by a rich tropical forest bursting with wildlife including red squirrels, howler monkeys and tiny magical hummingbirds. We are a 10 min walk from the cool cafes, bars and shops that line the 6km stretch of road and beach that make up Playa Santa Teresa/Playa El Carmen.
Throughout the volunteer projects you assist in preserving precious ecosystems and help local people raise their quality of life.
However, there is still free time to enjoy a great social life and participate in the many other activities to be enjoyed here.
NOTE : Turtle Conservation in Montezuma or CIRENAS, Playa Ario is ONLY available for 4 week clients.
Spanish Lessons Each day Monday to Friday there will be 2 x 45 minute Spanish lessons (usually at 09:00-11:00 but subject to change depending surf conditions).
Tuition is delivered by accredited and licensed teachers and on day one you receive a short test to establish your level and objectives.
These lessons are tailored to suit all levels from beginner to intermediate and are designed to help you interact and immerse with the local community and enjoy being in a Spanish speaking country.
During weeks 1, 2 & 4 on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday (2-3 hours per day), you participate in volunteer projects designed to conserve and respect local natural resources. Project work is varied and priorities are seasonal and weather dependent. However, most of our efforts are focused on the following areas;
Here we work alongside the ‘Santa Teresa Lifeguards’. Having seen the amazing beaches of Santa Teresa, and adjoining Playa Hermosa and Playa Carmen, the recreational opportunities are clear. However, beaches need to be maintained to keep them clear of debris that not only looks unsightly but can cause harm to people and wildlife. Initially we receive briefing and training from the Lifeguards as we set out our group objectives. Work includes promoting Lifeguard issues with regard to beach safety and etiquette (through signage, presentations and speaking to visitors), organizing clean ups with focus on recycling.
Formed in response to water and beach pollution, this government-backed initiative aims to reward communities that adhere to their guidelines on conservation practice. By awarding the Blue Flag, the communities gain international recognition for their beach and can attract more tourists and investment.
Our main focus is the forests most important resource – water! You help with the maintenance and supply of our tree nursery; planting carefully selected saplings, gathered seeds and ongoing support of recently planted trees to ensure their success.
We support the local ‘Waterkeepers’ who patrol the river systems of Santa Teresa and neighboring tropical forest resources by helping to report any contamination, clear forest debris and litter from streams before it is washed out to sea and can cause further damage to wildlife, and by maintaining walking/hiking trails that allow visitors to access this beautiful area. It is also a great opportunity to learn about the biodiversity of flora and fauna in this special part of the world.
Community work with the kids of Santa Teresa local community. Here we team up and work hand in hand with kids from our immediate vicinity hosting extra curriculum activities for them . Our activities are run by student and local volunteers, and activities include Sports, Arts & Crafts, English classes, environmental awareness activities and social awareness activities.
We also organize and run out-of school activities (including Saturday afternoons – which are open to all our clients to get involved), for the kids to appreciate entirely new experiences and adventures, including; organised sea safety, beach and kids surf classes, nature and turtle conservation activities, sports games and arts and crafts.
Turtle Conservation (Week #3)
You’ll be protecting the eggs and hatchlings of Olive Ridley, Black Turtle, Hawksbill and Leatherback species who visit nesting beaches at night to nest.
Our principle objectives are to protect adult female turtles that frequent nesting beaches and their nests from human predators and wildlife, natural events such as beach erosion and flooding due to high amounts of rainfall in nesting season.
This is achieved by monitoring of nesting sites and the construction of ‘hatcheries’. Specifically, volunteer duties will include; maintenance of infrastructure and surroundings, beach cleaning, night patrols to look for nesting female turtles (in season), transport of food and water, collection of data and releasing baby turtles into the ocean (in season).
It is important to note that although turtles nest frequently in peak nesting season (July to November), there will be times where turtle activity is very low. We still need help during most of the year for the construction and maintenance of the hatchery; critical for the upcoming season. However, during April to June Turtle Conservation volunteering is only available to 4 week students at AVSO Montezuma or CIRENAS Playa Ario (week 3).
For a seasonal overview of turtle activity check the following chart:
For more information about what you will be doing at AVSO see;
We would like you to enjoy Nicoya Peninsula - an area of outstanding natural beauty so each Wednesday we will explore our surroundings on foot.
The first is a 2 hour ‘jungle river trek’ along a river that runs by Jakera Jungle Surf Camp and into the lush tropical forest that surrounds us. You quickly find yourself ‘lost’ and wondering which direction the seemingly nearby beach is.
The second Wednesday we hike from ‘beach to waterfall’ to discover a multitude of waterfalls and rivers that tumble and twist through the rainforest and out into the PacificOcean. This hike helps us to understand how the whole eco system works. There is a huge range of flora including trees with specific medicinal applications. We begin to understand the beauty of this truly diverse location
Start Dates 2019
Jan-06 & Jan-20, Feb-03 & Feb-17, Mar-03 & Mar-17, Apr-07 & Apr-21, May-05 & May-19, Jun-02 & Jun-16, Jul-07 & Jul-21, Aug-04 & Aug-18, Sep-01 & Sep-15, Oct-6 & Oct-20, Nov-03 & Nov-17, Dec-01 & Dec-15
Weekly price includes 7 nights accommodation, breakfast & lunch (brunch at weekends),
10 intensive Spanish lessons, 4 volunteer sessions (2-3 hours per day), hiking and other
activities as described above.
The ‘program’ starts on a Sunday (changeover day) with the program ending after
breakfast on corresponding Sunday 7, 14 or 28 days later.
You are welcome to arrive Saturday or earlier*
Extra night – accommodation & breakfast– USD 40 / EUR 35
Airport transfer - USD 75 / EUR 70 each way
Book this program now
Connect with us here to see if your preferred arrival date is available