Volunteer for Sea Turtle Conservation on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica

Samara Beach, Costa Rica

93 People are researching this program


New Program
(48 Reviews)
  • From $1120 USD for 2 Weeks

  • 2 - 12 Weeks

  • Select Start Dates

  • 18 And Older



A number of sea turtle species in Costa Rica are facing extinction because of human intervention. Turtles’ eggs are a local delicacy, attracting poachers. Adult turtles are hunted for their meat and shells. Predators such as seabirds eat many of the hatchlings as they make their journey to the sea. Volunteers are needed to patrol the beaches before and during hatchings to ensure these tiny creatures reach the water, and to dissuade poachers from hunting the turtles.

Arrival and Orientation

The nearest major airport is Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO) in San Jose, Costa Rica. Make your way to San Ramón. Volunteers are assigned a dedicated coordinator based in-country, who leads pre-arrival and orientation, and is personally available to you daily for the duration of your program to assist you, answer any questions, and provide information and support.


Volunteers live and work at the turtle conservation site on the Pacific Coast, at the beach where the project is located. The accommodation is a basic camp setting, and sleeping arrangements may be mixed-gender. Water is carried in daily by volunteers, and there is no electricity onsite.

Field Conditions

Program volunteers work both in the daytime and at night, six days per week. Turtle research and conservation and site maintenance are performed during the day. Beach patrols take place at night. Tasks include maintaining the beach project site, recording turtle populations, moving eggs to the turtle hatchery, releasing hatchlings, patrolling the beach for predators and poachers, and shopping for supplies. One week of local language class is included.

Your Impact

Your work will help to protect current turtle populations, and your research and important data about sea turtles will contribute to an international monitoring project. This ensures that endangered turtle species are protected for years to come.


Samara Beach, Costa Rica
  • Where you will be volunteering
    Samara Beach, Costa Rica

    Volunteers work with a local team to monitor and research sea turtles, and assist with conservation activities.

  • Where you'll be staying
    Samara Beach, Costa Rica

    Volunteers stay in a basic camp at the project site.

  • Nearest Airport
    San Jose, Costa Rica


2 Weeks
12 Weeks
2 Weeks

$1120 USD

What’s Included

  • Training and support

  • Airport pickup

  • Housing

What’s Not Included

  • Transportation to and from project site

  • Airport dropoff

  • Travel insurance

  • Air Tickets

Project Start Dates

This project accepts volunteers year round. Start dates are every other Friday. Additional projects can be combined during your trip, subject to availability and individual visa conditions.


uVolunteer is a small, yet fast-growing, international volunteer organization that specializes in volunteer placements in Ghana, Thailand, and Costa Rica, where they are experts in culture and customs. Founded in 2007, uVolunteer has sent more than 10,000 volunteers abroad on meaningful projects to explore new destinations and gain real world experiences. Its service-learning projects include teaching, care and community, construction, environment, and animal conservation. Additional benefits are cultural insight, adventure, and a safe environment for independent, female, and student travelers. Its purpose is to provide maximum benefit to volunteers and the communities they support, with minimal costs to participants.

Reviews (48)


Jan 01, 2016

I arrived in Accra on January 13, 2012. My volunteer coordinators were waiting for me at the airport; they have been helpful and kind since then. My experience was wonderful because of their guidance and support.

Saturday's orientation provided useful cultural information and helped me to navigate through the ...

Billy F Beltz

Jan 01, 2016

Disclaimer: As a Co-Founder of Volunteer Forever, I want to make it clear that we do not receive any revenue from uVolunteer and I'm not incentivized to leave a more positive review than what would be an accurate assessment of my experience.

This review is for the Teach PE ...

Beth Carter

May 11, 2015

My name is Beth Carter, I am a 21 year old film student from Brisbane, Australia. I have always loved traveling and only recently discovered volunteer tourism.

I decided to take part in the turtle conservation project through uVolunteer as I not only wanted to visit Costa Rica but also ...

Rocio Dos Santos

Feb 21, 2015

I couldn't help but to feel nervous and excited whilst waiting for my passport to be stamped at San Jose airport. I soon saw Gabi once I walked out with a huge smile and an also huge sign that said avic, my portal to an amazing experience I had ... +more

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