Volunteer with Turtle Conservation in the Osa Peninsula & Matapalo

Do you love animals, and especially turtles? Have you always dreamed residing on a pristine beach in a beautiful exotic country? You should check out Global Crossroad’s volunteering in the turtle conservation opportunity in the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica.

  • Volunteer abroad in turtle conservation in the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica for a low starting price of only $575
  • Gain hands-on experience working with turtle conservation in one of the most beautiful places in the world
  • Highly acclaimed and reviewed programs since 2003
  • Always feel safe and supported with our readily available in country coordinator

Do you want to be part of a team trying to save endangered species in one of the most pristine locations in the world? Are you motive in live in a rustic but beautiful landscape and work with scientists to track turtles and save their environment? If you do then the volunteering overseas with turtle conservation in the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica project is the perfect project for you.

In Gulf of Dulce in Costa Rica, scientists have been involved in research and habitat protection for years. The work is extensive and their data is slowly building pictures of the treatment sea turtles face. These turtles always return to nest on the beach at which they were hatched, but many turtles never return due to natural predators and the ones who do face eroding beaches, pollution and other physical challenges upon arrival. Conservation efforts can do little to combat natural predators, but focus on protecting the nesting population who does return "home". Human poachers also pose a threat on top of natural challenges. The rate of decline is so high that, if not slowed, the sea turtle will be extinct in two decades.

The project needs dedicated volunteers to help them gather data and protect nesting sites. This will be a wonderful hands-on learning experience. You will feel highly satisfied knowing that you contribution to the volunteer with turtle conservation program in the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica makes a huge difference in the present and future lives of these special marine animals.

Role of Volunteer

The volunteering with turtle conservation opportunity in the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica has 2 focus areas. They are research and habitat protection. Volunteers will be involved in both areas.

In research, volunteers will do following activities:

  • Be part of the team trying to catch turtles for research
  • In the sea, take the turtles out of the beach and collect blood samples to determine their health
  • Measure size, look for wounds
  • Take tissue sample to construct their lineage
  • Take mucus same from eyes, nose and cloaca
  • Metal tag them before releasing them
  • Write them tag number with size and other same details

In the habitat protection work, volunteers will be on the boat a lot of time visiting different parts of the boat. It is essentially to have a healthy environment for turtle eggs to hatch. Your work can include:

  • Beach cleaning – collect debris washed in their from nearby rivers, and also collect garbage (work in early morning)
  • Mangrove reforestation program – volunteers will try to improve the quality of the water and improve local ecosystems. Work includes collect sees and grow them in nursery, and take them back when they are strong enough to survive there.
  • Turtle care – nurse and feed injured turtles

Skills and Qualifications Needed

You must be 18 or above in order to volunteer abroad with turtle conservation in the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica. If you are underage either your parents accompany you, or you must produce proof of permission from your parents. You must also have basic knowledge of Spanish.

Much of the volunteering with turtle conservation in the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica work is physical in nature, so you must be in good physical health, able to walk long distances, boat, swim and resistant to the heat and humidity of this climate. Good eyesight is necessary, non-smokers are preferred for this placement, and illegal drugs and alcohol won't be allowed in the area. Please sure all the cigarette stubs are binned. Challenging conditions are the norm and night patrols are an important part of this volunteering with turtle conservation in the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica project.

You should be aware of any insect allergies as mosquitoes and sand flies are persistent. First-aid training is preferred, and previous experience with sea turtle conservation efforts is appreciated, but the local staff will provide training.

You must have a copy of health insurance with you. In Costa Rica, without insurance you will not be able to participate in a volunteer project.

Dates and Prices

Dates: Volunteer in Costa Rica

All volunteer programs in Costa Rica start every Monday of each month. However, if there is travel constrains, you can start any project on any day.

Busy Season in Matapolo:May-November

Prices: Volunteer in Costa Rica

Global Crossroad is committed to offering the most affordable and highest quality volunteering programs in Costa Rica. We strive to keep our costs low. The humanitarian side of the business is our passion.

Global Crossroad's volunteer program in Costa Rica application and registration fee cost US $299. The application fee covers the cost of advertising, program promotion, and office expenses (rent, utilities, and staff salaries in USA office).

In addition to the application fee, you are required to pay a weekly program fee. You will pay your weekly fee directly to the country coordinator, who in turn will allocate it to your host family, project and other in-country support we offer to our volunteers. This way, the fees that you pay will benefit those who rightfully deserve them, and not for company profit.

Duration Matapolo (Pacific) Osa Peninsula (Pacific)
  1 Week   $140   $385
  2 Weeks   $280   $770
  3 Weeks   $420   $1155
  4 Weeks   $560   $1540
  5 Weeks   $700   $1925
  6 Weeks   $840   $2310
  7 Weeks   $980   $2695
  8 Weeks   $1120   $3080
  9 Weeks   $1260   $3465
  10 Weeks   $1400   $3850
  11 Weeks   $1540   $4235
  12 Weeks   $1680   $4620

Matapolo (Airport Pick Up and Transportation) »

Matapalo- Pacific  (airport pick up and transportation)

Matapalo Turtle Conservation site is 120 miles from San Jose.  There are two options for you to choose from.

Option one- organized by Global Crossroad

  • Airport Pick, spend the first night in a hotel in San Jose $45

(If you arrive before 2 p.m. you can go directly to the project by taxi, without staying in a hotel)

  • Travel from San Jose to Matapalo in a private taxi $150

Option two- travel by yourself to the project (total cost $42)
If you flight arrives early in the morning, or before 9 a.m. you can choose to go directly to the project by public bus.

Bus Departure time from San Jose to Matapalo: 6:30 AM, 8:00 AM, 9:30 AM, 10 AM

Here are the directions to get to the project from San Jose

  • Take the bus from Gran Terminal del Caribe of San José to Matapalo de Quepos. $15
  • When you get off in Matapalo de Quepos take a taxi to the project $5 

Gran Terminal del Caribe of San Jose: Map

*you will pay your airport pick up/transfer fee directly to staff in Costa Rica

Osa Peninsula (Airport Pick up and Transportation) »

Osa - Pacific  (airport pick up and transportation

The Osa Turtle Conservation site is 100 miles from San Jose.  Here are the details of the airport pick up and transfer fee.

  • Airport Pick, first night at a hotel in San Jose $45
  • Sanjose to Punterenas by bus $8
  • Punterenas to Osa by bus $6

*You will pay your airport pick up/transfer cost directly to staff in Costa Rica 

Pacuare (Airport Pick Up and Transportation) »

Pacuare  (airport pick up and transportation)

Pacuare Turtle Conservation site is 80 miles from San Jose.  There are two options for you to choose from.

Option one- organized by Global Crossroad

  • Airport Pick, spend the first night in a hotel in San Jose $45

(If you arrive before 2 p.m. you can go directly to the project by taxi without staying in a hotel.)

  • San Jose to Pecaure in a private taxi $150
  • The boat transportation cost is 35$

Option two- travel by yourself to the project

If your flight arrives early in the morning, or before 10 a.m., you can choose to go to the project directly by public bus

  • San Jose to Siquirres $6
  • Siquirres to Las Vegas de Imperio $3
  • The boat transportation cost is 35$

Bus Departure time from San Jose: 11 a.m.

Directions - traveling to your project

1. From the Gran Terminal del Caribe of San José, take the 11:00 a.m. bus to Siquirres. You will arrive at Siquirres around 1:15 p.m.

2. From the terminal at Siquirres walk to La Estación Intercantonal, also called Parada de los Calvos, (300m). (If you are not sure, just ask people where you can get on a bus to Las Vegas de Imperio).

3. Take the 2:30 p.m. bus to Las Vegas de Imperio, getting off at the last stop.

4. A staff member will be waiting for you there. The boat transportation cost is 35$ per person, both trips.

Links

Gran Terminal del Caribe of San Jose: Map

Terminal of Siquirres: Map

Las Vegas de Imperio: Map

Project location: Map

*You will pay your airport pick up/transfer fee directly to staff in Costa Rica: Map 

How your fee is allocated?

The volunteering overseas in Costa Rica program fees will cover expenses that will begin on the first day of the program (usually the first or third Monday of the month) to the last day of the program. If you arrive before the first day of the program or you decide you stay beyond your program’s last day, you will be responsible for the additional expenses, which would typically be around $30 a day for room and meals at a hostel.

Most Frequently Asked Questions: Volunteer in Turtle Conservation in the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica