Conservation volunteers work within a non-profit biological research and education centre, and all food, lodging, training and research will be provided within the reserve.
The objectives of the Butterfly Garden project is the investigation of native species of butterflies (Siproeta stelenes, Caligo memnon, Heraclides thoas, Dryas iulia) in the reserve and all aspects of their reproductive cycle and plant foods. Environmental education workshops will also take place, whereby members of the local community will visit the garden and volunteers will help to conduct educational tours and classes. Volunteers can also help to develop workshops for local schools.
Playa Tortuga is located just 3.5 hours from San Jose, in Ojochal de Osa on the Southern Pacific Coast Of Costa Rica. The Reserve offers an ideal environment for researchers and volunteers. It is located in the tropical rainforest and just outside of Marino Ballena National Park. This park is named after the humpback whales that migrate there from August – October and December – April. Three species of dolphins are also common visitors to the waters. Visitors can explore miles of deserted beaches, mangrove forests and coral reefs. On days off you can take a bus to visit Dominical and Uvita, local towns where you can go surfing, or arrange a full day snorkelling trip to Cano Island, go whale watching or do a mangrove tour by kayak. In addition, you can find local souvenirs and ice cream parlours, which are a favourite with the volunteers!
Conservation volunteers live at the research centre – the property itself is on 42 hectares of reserve which borders the Pacific ocean and the Terraba. The facilities currently hold 15 people in the main centre, in addition to a private residence used for conferences and training. Facilities are of high quality. Volunteers live in large, spacious and clean rooms, all have fans and new orthopaedic mattresses. You also get free internet usage, 1 free laundry wash per week, a purified water system, education and a small research library area is also available for volunteers. From Monday to Friday, all lunch meals are provided for you, but you will need to prepare your own breakfasts and dinners and weekend meals alongside other volunteers/staff members. All food will be provided.
Projects at Playa Tortuga run all year round. Volunteers can join for 1 week up to 12 weeks, while there is also the possibility to intern for up to 6 months.
For more details on how the programme works, dates, costs and how to apply, please visit our detailed project page here.