Costa Rica

Pura Vida Experience


*Airfare for group flight from Miami additional

14 days

Trip duration

7th & 8th


14 days

July 16 - July 29

Miami, FL

Arrival & Departure



14 days

Trip duration

July 16 - July 29

7th & 8th


*Airfare for group flight from Miami additional


Step out of your comfort zone for a two-week experience that combines exciting adventure, unique cultural immersion, and impactful service learning. Live and work in a remote ranching village high in the cloud forest, and get your hands dirty building much-needed infrastructure. Organize a community soccer game with students from a rural elementary school and build your Spanish-speaking skills while living in a traditional Costa Rican community. Experience the beauty of this majestic nation by whitewater rafting through the lush rainforest on the Pacuare River, and learn to surf the gentle waves off its beautiful palm-fringed beaches. Sample sweet chocolate and coffee grown and harvested by local families, and learn the art of hand-making delicious tortillas and empanadas while learning to live the “Pura Vida” (Pure Life!) culture from local Costa Ricans.


  • Work on Critical Building Projects in a Rural Village Community
  • Learn to Surf the Peaceful Waves of the Pacific Ocean
  • Whitewater Raft the Canyons of the World-Famous Pacuare River
  • Immerse Yourself in “Pura Vida” (Pure life!) Culture of This Amazing Country
  • Organize a Community Soccer Match and Cultural Exchange at a Costa Rican School
  • Zipline Through the Breathtaking Rainforest Canopy
  • Explore Hidden Rainforest Waterfalls and Natural Waterslides
  • 10 Hours of Service Learning

Get the itinerary

Cultural Immersion

Live and work in a small, rural Costa Rican community high in the mountains. Spend time with a local family during a community homestay and learn more about their daily lives, from preparing traditional meals to tending farm animals. Practice your Spanish skills and learn more about their history and culture. Participate in exciting soccer matches and build bonds with members of the community.



Raft down the exciting whitewater rapids of the beautiful Rio Pacuare and spend the night at a beautiful rainforest ecolodge overlooking the river. Pass silvery waterfalls, dense vegetation, and the calls of tropical birds and monkeys. Experience the amazing canopy ziplines and soak in refreshing waterfall pools in the heart of the jungle. The white sand beaches and warm Pacific waters provide the perfect opportunity to practice your surf skills and learn from professional guides.



Service Learning

Lend a hand with ongoing community projects in the coffee-growing high country of Savegre, alongside community members and your ARCC teammates. Get a unique glimpse into a culture where daily life may be very different from our own lives back home. Help with daily tasks and ongoing projects in the community like repairing communal buildings or roads in the village, assisting with farm animal care, or working on a greenhouse project to grow saplings of native plants.


Common Questions

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Each program has a specific packing list that has been designed to fit the program’s activities, length, climate, and cultural differences. You will receive this packing list in the comprehensive Welcome Packet that is sent to all students after they enroll in a program.

The specific service projects that each group will work on depend on the needs of the communities at the time that the groups are there. Past projects have included: Constructing composting gardens in a small village, making improvements to community roads or buildings, reforestation of native trees, or building a community soccer field.

Costa Rica is a relatively clean and safe place to travel. However, ARCC does recommend that you take some health precautions before your program. When you enroll in the program, you will receive more detailed information on pertinent travel vaccinations and immunizations. Please also refer to the Traveler’s Health section of the CDC website. Our leaders carry a full first-aid kit and are all certified Wilderness First Responders (WFR).

During this program, we sleep in a variety of accommodations: small hotels, community houses, and a jungle lodge.

Typically we will take a private 20-person shuttle from place to place. When traveling to more remote areas we will occasionally split into two groups and use smaller 4-wheel drive vehicles. We also take a short ferry ride during the turtle project portion of our program.

On this program, you will experience typical Costa Rican fare – rice and beans. This staple is supplemented with a delicious assortment of fresh fruits and vegetables. The group will also be creating the menu and preparing the meals during some sections of the program.

Vegetarians and medical dietary requirements (i.e. allergies) are catered for. Students should inform ARCC of any dietary needs before the start of the program. 

Have questions? Speak to one of our Program Directors, give them a call at (415) 332.5075 , they love talking about their trips!

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