Summer camps in Costa Rica are some of the best ones you’ll find in Central America. Participating in a summer camp is a rite of passage for kids everywhere.
Students can spend their summer in a foreign country exploring a different culture and going on a life-changing adventure! Some of the best education (and great ways to spend free time) can only come from travel.
Your child will be able to participate in cultural activities, from service projects to sea turtle rescue! The Costa Rican experience is like no other, and this beautiful country will help high school students create wonderful memories and improve their Spanish speaking skills.
- Dates: Various dates from June 11 – Aug 13
- Cost: $2695 – $3495
Rustic Pathways offers unforgettable service-focused camps in Costa Rica that focus on the interests of your teens. These include Surf and Service for those wanting to experience the Costa Rican waves, Turtle Conservation for budding marine biologists, and the Pura Vida Service camp which brings together service, adventure, and friendships.
No matter the program, your kids will experience adventure and camp activities alongside 12 hours of service that can include beach cleanup to monitoring beaches for turtle eggs. The camps last between 7 to 8 days with ages 14-18 welcome to attend.
Rustic Pathways combines traditional activities like white water rafting and ziplining with making a meaningful difference in the world and within Costa Rica. Travelers will also be able to practice their Spanish skills and take surf lessons.
Bold Earth Adventures
- Dates: June 29 – July 19, June 29 – July 12, July 15 – July 28
- Cost: $5088 – $6788
For your 7th to 11th graders, Bold Earth is all about being bold. In the weeks kids spend on their Bold Earth Costa Rica programs, they will explore many new horizons. Bold Earth has 3 programs that last 14 to 21 days.
With the Costa Rica Active option, they can explore and hike the Monteverde Cloudforest reserve and get to know local Tico culture by meeting families in the area. After that, the group can experience the Rincón de la Vieja National Park, check out the geysers and mud pits, go river tubing, and take a trip to the impressive waterfalls.
The fun doesn’t stop there! The second of the two weeks sees your kid spend three days with a surf instructor, learning to tame the Costa Rican waves, going river rafting, and experiencing an adventure while staying in an eco-lodge.
Each program covers 15 hours of community service and 2-3 full weeks of cultural immersion. Parents have repeatedly mentioned Bold Earth camps as the adventure trip that helped shape their children into global citizens to be proud of.
Intercultura Costa Rica
- Dates: July 7-21
- Cost: $2630
Intercultura focuses on leadership skills and Spanish language development in their immersion-focused summer camp.
Students will interact with local communities to gain new perspectives on the world and a greater understanding of how distinct cultures make up our world.
The first week that’s spent in the city of Heredia has your child stay with their host families, attend a few hours of class daily, participate in dance classes, and try different ice cream. Teens are encouraged to keep a journal to ensure they don’t forget about their experiences. On the weekend, they’ll visit some of the fantastic sights of Costa Rica, from Arenal Volcano to the otherworldly Monteverde Cloudforest.
Week two will improve your teen’s Spanish! Students visit the reefs to snorkel and swim. They also volunteer at a local non-profit and work with local children and help protect the environment. Catamaran tours to nearby islands take place and it all finishes with a fantastic trip to Montezuma Beach & Waterfall.
- Dates: June 28 – July 26, July 27 – Aug 12
- Cost: $4995 – $6995
Teens on a Global Routes Costa Rica adventure immerse themselves in the local culture, starting with a homestay community where they work on their Spanish. Students work and live in a rural area and see first hand how a small step makes a huge difference!
There are lots of fun excursions, from rainforest conservation trips to zip-lining, river rafting, and everything in between!
The first week is spent at the Rainforest Adventure Center, and afterward, it’s time to meet the locals. Students might work on a farm, paint a mural, cook a new meal, or try something completely new!
After that, it’s a week of Uvita and the beach, meaning there’s a never-ending supply of new things for your teen to see. The groups are limited to 18 students for the 2 or 4-week trips.
WB Surf Camp
- Dates: Various dates from June 22 to August 9
- Cost: $2940 – $5440
If your sporty teen wants to experience the surf, sand, and sea, WB Surf Camp is for them. The coastline of Costa Rica is a unique haven for surfers, and WB Surf Camp allows children to try it out.
They’ll live in a beautiful private hotel on one of the most stunning beaches in the country and set their own goals. As well as professional surfing lessons, campers see how the best surfboards are made, practice Spanish, eat at new restaurants, and explore the rainforests and national parks in an adrenaline-filled Costa Rican vacation.
The 2-week program also provides campers with ten community service hours, making it fun and worthwhile with skills that last a lifetime!
Wild Sun Rescue
- Dates: July 14th – August 10th
- Cost: $7925
Wild Sun is a 4-week volunteer camp for older teens (15-17) who wish to volunteer in the stunning Costa Rican natural environment.
They will experience the perfect program dedicated to the environmental protection of the waterfalls, wildlife, and beaches of Costa Rica. In the mornings, participants will perform service for the wildlife rescue center.
In the afternoon, they will be free to explore and experience the beaches, local culture, and the community around them. Excursions like whale watching, ziplining, horseback riding, and more are included.
Wild Sun offers optional academic or athletic classes in surfing, wildlife biology, and pre-vet studies, adding a rare chance to study abroad in a different kind of atmosphere.
The work at the wildlife rescue center counts toward community service credits for high school students and college applicants!
GVI Rainforest Conservation Camp
- Dates: July 13 – July 27, July 27 – August 10
- Cost: $4945
For a program that makes an impact on the world and those who attend, GVI offers a Rainforest Conservation experience that brings campers together to help the world.
Cultural immersion is a key part, and campers are encouraged to take on opportunities and activities that help them connect with the locals of Gandoca and also get to visit the indigenous Bribri tribe for an overnight stay. They will also be able to explore the local region that features beaches, mangroves, and jungles.
GVI adds an extra layer to the camp experience by encouraging its students to undertake much of the training and qualifications offered in everything from women’s empowerment to sustainable development.
Children learn about protecting wild cats, turtles, and other species. Most instructors are GVI alumni, so it’s not just a camp but it’s a family working together to improve the ecosystems.
- Dates: June 29 – July 20 (1, 2, or 3-week program options)
- Cost: $2610 – $6520
Greenheart Travel has customizable two-week programs on the beautiful beaches of Manuel Antonio and a week in the fantastic city of San Jose. It’s all about Spanish immersion, giving your kids 15 hours of Spanish lessons a week and plenty of chances to chat outside the classroom!
Travelers live with a host family and participate in cultural activities and daily trips, from learning Tico traditional art to salsa lessons. You can also expect Costa Rican BBQ, a nature excursion in the rainforest, and endless cultural opportunities.
There’s always more to see or do in the stunning country of Costa Rica!
- Dates: June 2 – 16, June 23 – July 7, July 14 – July 28, August 4 – August 18 (2-week courses)
- Cost: $3950
Not all high school students love their Spanish classes, but there’s more than one way to develop Spanish skills. With the Tico Lingo program, children spend time in the local community and homestay with local families, getting to know Costa Rican children and their daily lives.
They’ll receive 40 hours of native-led Spanish classes and experience cultural activities like yoga, cooking, and dance.
It’s about more than sitting in the classroom all day! In addition to classes, there are plenty of chances to make new friends and live the Costa Rica experience through white water rafting, kayaking, and city tours of San Jose.
Campers will see the rainforests, the coffee farms, the museums, and the stunning biodiversity that only Costa Rica can offer.