Costa Rica School Trip Overview
The tropical paradise of Costa Rica is a perfect introduction to Latin America for student travelers! On this immersive cultural experience, students will gain an appreciation for Costa Rican culture as they volunteer with a meaningful service project. Students will earn up to 15 hours of service and enjoy unique experiences that can only be had in Costa Rica.
Our goal is to help students to step outside their comfort zone, appreciate other cultures, and discover the joy of traveling. Thanks to our years of experience in leading young travelers around Costa Rica, Travel For Teens are experts in engaging and inspiring student travelers. Join us on this one-of-a-kind cultural experience and leave them with memories to last a lifetime!
Did You Know? Teachers travel for free! Learn more about the Benefits for Teachers.
Map and Route
- Day 1-2: Turrialba
- Days 3-4: La Fortuna
- Days 5-7: Sámara Beach
- Day 8: Depart for home from San Jose
Interested in learning more about this tour?
Detailed Trip Itinerary
Learn more about what each day is like on tour! Click on the day to discover the different sites and activities you will experience
DAY 1: ¡Bienvenidos a Costa Rica!
The adventure begins as you fly from your preferred airport to San José. Your Travel For Teens guides will meet you at the San José Airport and accompany you for the duration of your journey. Upon arrival, board our private coach and head out to the town of Turrialba. Get settled into the hotel and enjoy your first dinner of authentic tico cuisine.
DAY 2: Turrialba
Morning activity: Coffee Plantation. On this tour, you’ll visit an iconic plantation established in 1890. You will learn everything about the different types of coffee beans, and how they produce different flavor profiles of coffee. You’ll understand how the bean is harvested, paid, selected, dried, and stored for it to fuel the needs of productive minds all over the globe.
In the afternoon rappel down four waterfalls, zip line down four canopy cables, and walk across a 132-foot hanging bridge! We will be accompanied by several expert guides. Canyoning involves rappelling and descending cliffs and waterfalls within the canyon
- Coffee Plantation Tour
- Waterfall rappelling and canyoning
DAY 3: Turrialba & La Fortuna
This morning we’ll take an incredible whitewater rafting journey down the Pacuare River! The Pacuare is one of the world’s top-rated rafting rivers, and is perfect for beginners and advanced rafters alike. Float through the dense rainforest and keep an eye out for local wildlife, like monkeys, toucans, and sloths.
This evening, board our private coach to La Fortuna. Towering over this quaint town is the impressive Arenal Volcano. Enjoy another delicious Costa Rican dinner at one of our favorite local restaurants and take a walk to explore the village.
- Whitewater rafting
- La Fortuna
DAY 4: La Fortuna
In the morning, we’ll head out for a zip line tour stretching from mountain to mountain, reaching incredible lengths and heights, crossing canyons, going into the forests, and even sometimes in between clouds!
After lunch, hike deep into the jungle to the La Fortuna Waterfall. This 210-foot ribbon of water forms natural pools that are perfect for going for a refreshing swim!
- Zip lining tour
- La Fortuna Waterfall
DAY 5: Sámara Beach
Say hasta luego to La Fortuna as we depart for our third and final destination: Playa Sámara! This idyllic beach town features long white sand beaches, turquoise waves perfect for surfing, and friendly locals. Travel For Teens have been leading service trips here for over a decade, and our relationships in the community give us unique insider access to show students authentic Costa Rican culture. Today we’ll meet our local partners to learn more about the service projects you’ll be working on, and get a few key Spanish words under your belt. For the next two days we will be working on projects alongside local school children in Playa Samara.
- Community Service
DAY 6: Sámara Beach & Chora Island
This morning, head out onto beautiful Chora Island, snorkeling through the clear water in search of vibrant fish and other incredible marine life! You can even try sea kayaking if you like!
Afternoon service: The group will participate in workshops that will include fun interactive activities between our local program kids and the Travel for Teens volunteers.
- Chora Island Snorkeling & Sea Kayaking
- Community Service
DAY 7: Sámara Beach
Surf’s up! Take a surfing lesson at a beach famous for its waves perfect for both beginners and avid surfers. Whether you’re a beginner or rival Kelly Slater, hone your skills as you learn how to surf in one of the best places in the Pacific side of Costa Rica! In the afternoon, we’ll head back to San Jose for our final evening in Costa RIca!
- Surf Lesson
- San Jose
Day 8: ¡Adiós, Costa Rica!
Your TFT guides will accompany you to the airport and assist you with check-in for your flight. Wave goodbye as you head through security and sit back and relax on your flight home.
Looking for a shorter or longer adventure? this trip can be adapted!
For teachers who are short on time, we can make this a 7, 9, or 10-day adventure! One of our expert trip designers will help adapt this itinerary to suit your specific needs. Contact us for more details.
The TFT Difference
We Never Combine Groups (unless you want to!)
Your tour is special and just for you and your students! We will never combine two or more groups on the same bus or tour unless you request traveling with another teacher. We will lead a trip with as few as six people and a teacher. Your Trip Director travels with you for the duration of your educational tour. If you have another group you would like to travel with, let us know and we can arrange for that as well!
Stress-Free Planning and 24/7 Support
We are there for you every step of the way, and our support begins the moment you decide to do a TFT educational tour! We will provide you with a team member who will help bring your tour to life, along with everything you need to help get students to sign up for the adventure! On the tour you will have 24/7 dedicated staff with you to ensure everything runs smoothly and because we know travel is full of surprises, solve anything that may pop up along the way.
Photos and Email Updates
We make sure your travel memories are captured forever! Expect frequent personal email updates and hundreds of photos from your TFT staff shared with you and your students’ families so everyone can follow along on the journey. We are the only educational tour company to offer this in-depth trip communication and it truly makes all the difference!
Central Accommodation and Local Meals
Authenticity is engrained in everything we do. We stay at locally owned accommodation in the center of town so you don’t waste your valuable time commuting. We dine at charming authentic restaurants to get a real flavor (literally!) for the local culture. The best way to travel is like a local. So ditch the tour bus and have a real traveler’s experience with us!
Travel with us and discover why we are consistently winning awards for Top Youth Travel Organization.