Costa Rica Highlights
Costa Rica is famous for its ecotourism and emphasis on sustainability as a way of life. This is the perfect place for young geographers to put their studies into action and see topics from ecosystems to tectonics come to life while having an adventure like none they have ever experienced before.
Condensing our favourite activities from Costa Rica into a list of just ten was a challenge. If you would like to know what else we offer or how to create the ideal itinerary for Geography or Science students speak to a member of our friendly team for advice.
Our top ten activities
1. Learn about measuring volcanic activity at Poas Observatory of Volcanology and Seismology
Poás Volcano is a powerful symbol of the geothermal forces that formed Costa Rica. Located within Poas Volcano National Park, the volcano is the largest active crater in the world at an impressive 320 metres deep and almost a mile wide.
2. Zip-line through the canopy in Monteverde
It’s Costa Rica’s most famous adventure! The 10 cables span lengths of 200 metres up to the longest of 800 metres; each cable offers a different experience through the cloud forest – crossing canyons, observing waterfalls, over the tops of trees or leaping from an observation tower 18 metres high.
3. Volunteer with Giant Leatherback Turtles
Become part of the voluntary conservation team in Pacuare with hands on experience helping on a working reserve dedicated to the conservation and nesting of giant leatherback turtles.
4. Spot wild life –day or night!
Whether in nature reserves or just on your journey from the airport, there are exotic creatures to catch a glimpse of. There are howler, spider and white-faced monkeys, three-toed sloth, caimans, turtles, and even Jesus Christ Lizards in the forests. Keep your eyes on the river, too – there’s the chance of spotting the fin of a freshwater shark as it slices above the water’s surface. The best time to observe birds is at daybreak however, when the sun goes down, is when the cloudforest comes to life and you could spy a countless variety of insects, amphibians, reptiles, birds & mammals that reside here.
5. Rio Negro Tubing and Horseback Ride in Rincon De La Vieja
Start your adventure on horseback on a 45-minute ride through the forest before arriving at the river. Here you’ll head onto the river equipped with buoyancy aids and individual large tubes, bouncing down the Rio Negro’s crystal clear rapids.
6. Travel by White Water Raft to El Nido de Tigre
Costa Rica is renowned as one of the world’s best places for white-water rafting, with a host of rivers cascading down from the hinterland through thick jungle. Raft down the turbulent world class white water of the Pacuare River – it is the most unique way to reach your rainforest camp, where you’ll spend the night in tents surrounded by the sounds of the jungle.
7. Plant a tree
In the 1960’s many areas of Costa Rica were subjected to extreme deforestation. In the 1990’s ecotourism took over the agricultural industry and many reserves opened to re-establish once destroyed forests & habitats. You can help too, by planting your own tree in Monteverde!
8. Take a Surfing or Paddle Boarding Lesson
Whether you are beginner or experienced surfers, you will be given the right kit and supervision to make the most of this surfing paradise. The surf school promises to deliver a positive, unique, safe and fun experience learning how to manoeuvre your board and ride waves like a Costa Rican pro! The lesson lasts for around two hours.
9. Experience local culture near the Arenal Volcano
Arenal is Costa Rica’s most active volcano with consistent lava flows since its eruption in 1968. Learn about the relationship of local inhabitants with the Arenal Volcano, their traditional way of living, agriculture and much more. You’ll meet a family and visit a local primary school where the children will show you some local folk dances and share with you how the educational system works in Costa Rica. Feeling hungry? You’ll try real Costa Rican tortillas or homemade bread from a local farm too.
10. Bathe in mud at Miravalles
Although dormant, Miravalles Volcano offers some amazing geological activity – hot sulphur springs, steam spewing fissures and bubbling mud pools can be found all around the area. An underground reservoir is the site of a geothermal energy plant at Las Hornillas that converts steam to electricity. The Hornillas are an active geothermal site of bubbling water pools, bubbling mud pools, fumaroles and natural mud of different colours. Enjoy a soak in the hot springs that are fed by the reservoir plus a mud bath.