Location: Atenas, Costa Rica
Length: 9 days
Audience: Sociology professionals
Highlights: Authentic homestay experience; Spanish lessons; collaborative projects with locals; hands-on lessons and discussions with local experts; organic coffee farm, and national parks; community service, and more
*Due to the customized nature of each program, prices and itineraries are subject to change. For more details please contact Immersion Abroad Costa Rica.*
DAY 1 Welcome – ¡Bienvenidos!
Arrive in San Jose and meet your Immersion Abroad Costa Rica (IACR) coordinator at the airport. Travel to the IACR Program Center in Atenas for an authentic Costa Rican meal and important trip orientation. Your host family will pick you up to experience your first night in your new “Tico” home.
DAY 2 Exploring Language and Community
Participate in fun and engaging Spanish lessons followed by a guided orientation activity of the quaint, friendly town of Atenas. Enjoy a traditional lunch experience at the colorful central market sodas (small family-style diners).Prepare for a fascinating afternoon discussion with expert consultant for NGO’s working with indigenous and immigrant issues.
DAY 3 Health Clinics and San Jose
Visit the Atenas Health Clinic servicing the county of Atenas followed by a visit and discussion at an EBAIS rural clinic. We will also visit and learn more about the CEN CINAI government funded early childhood health program and the Red Cross public ambulance service. This afternoon we will travel to capital city San Jose for a visit to the National Cultural Museum. We will then walk through the beautiful Metropolitan Cathedral and have time to shop at the vibrant artisan market.
DAY 4 Poás Volcano – Chilamate
After breakfast enjoy an unforgettable visit to Poás Volcano by hiking to the rim of this world’s largest and most accessible volcanic crater. Following our visit we will begin our overnight adventure to Chilamate in the Sarapiqui North Caribbean region. We will stop along the way for a taste of authentic Costa Rican cuisine. After checking in to the hotel you will have a relaxing tube ride down the Amarillo River.
DAY 5 Braulio Carrillo National Park – Nature Pavilion
This morning we set out for Braulio Carrillo National Park. Here you will enjoy a moderate hike with a naturalist guide for an expert understanding of the park’s five ecosystems. Afternoon excursions include a chocolate tour and zip-lining through the rainforest canopy. We wrap up the day at the breathtaking Costa Rica Nature Pavilion, a National Geographic destination site and central home to over 225 bird species.
DAY 6 Round Table: Nutrition/Environment and Latin Dance Workshop
Today we will visit Costa Rica’s Institute of Social Assistance and Promotion (IMAS). With over 40 years of experience, IMAS develops, finances, implements and evaluates social service and investment projects in order to alleviate extreme poverty in the country. This afternoon you will have a unique opportunity to learn and serve at a local women’s prison.
DAY 7 Teen Pregnancy Center – INA
This morning participate in a student-led project at a teen pregnancy center, a home for teenage moms (12-18 years old) who need a welcoming home, a place to care for their children, and opportunities for personal development. This afternoon you will engage in a special cultural exchange with young adult students at INA (Instituto National de Aprendizaje), Costa Rica’s highly successful National Institute of Learning. You will participate in sociology and biology focused activities with students enrolled in INA’s national English language employment program.
DAY 8 Organic Coffee Farm
Today offers a one-of-a-kind hands-on learning experience at a local organic coffee farm. Learn about sustainable cultivation techniques and discover why coffee is one of Costa Rica’s most important exports.
DAY 9 Departure
IACR staff will take you to the San Jose International Airport where we will say our final adiós.