Wildlife conservation, community and environmental volunteer projects and internships worldwide

Volunteer in Central America

"It was the most fantastic experience. The welcome and support I had on arrival was brilliant, making me feel secure and safe. Working at the sanctuary was incredible and being with the macaws was a huge privilege. "

Paige, UK

There are seven countries in Central America: Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Costa Rica and Panama.  All the countries of the region boast an incredibly diverse set of vibrant cultures, awe-inspiring historical treasures, bustling cities and tranquil nature.  Escape to places that hide magical waterfalls behind lush tropical vegetation and that fill your heart with the rhythm of thriving colourful towns.  And the beauty doesn’t just lie on the shore.  The underwater worlds off the coasts have just as much excitement to offer and coming up for breath means you’ll find yourself amidst an incredible array of island paradises.  This region, small as it may be, has a wealth of all of the best things in life.

If you want to volunteer in Central America, we offer four volunteer programmes in Costa Rica, which include sea turtle research programmes, researching caimans, crocodiles, tree boas and mammals as well volunteering in a wildlife rescue centre whilst taking Spanish and yoga lessons and learning to surf!

Our Projects in Central America

  • Playa Tortuga Conservation Volunteer Project, Costa Rica

    • Duration 1 week to 6 months
    • Prices from £445

    Volunteer in Costa Rica and live and work in a biological research station and take part in sea turtle, butterfly, caiman, crocodile, tree boa, monkey and mammal research and environmental education.

  • Wildlife Rescue Volunteer Project, Costa Rica

    • Duration 3-12 weeks
    • Prices from £195

    Opportunities for volunteers and interns to work with rescued animals, whilst also having the opportunity to learn Spanish, and take yoga lessons.

  • Pacific Sea Turtle Volunteer Project, Costa Rica

    • Duration 1 - 12 weeks
    • Prices from £367

    Volunteer with sea turtles in Costa Rica on our Olive, Green and Hawksbill Ridley turtle research programme on the spectacular Southern Pacific coast of Costa Rica in the Osa Peninsula in the remote wilderness paradise of Playa Rincon, or the amazing Playa Hermosa, at Punta Mala beach.

  • Olive Ridley Sea Turtle Volunteer Programme, Costa Rica

    • Duration 11 days -12 weeks
    • Prices from £610

    Volunteer in Costa Rica and become a sea turtle volunteer, helping to conserve and protect the populations of vulnerable Olive Ridleys. Located on the spectacular Pacific coast where Olive Ridley turtles come up in thousands at a time for this phenomenon of nature called ‘arribadas’.

Interesting Facts

Interesting Facts

  • The region contains the Pan-American Highway, which is listed in the Guinness World Records as the world’s longest “motorable road”.
  • Honduras, Panama and Costa Rica are often called the “banana republics” because of the importance bananas have to their economies.
  • There is no spot in Central America more than 200 km from the ocean.
  • Central America makes up most of the Mesoamerican biodiversity hotspot, home to 7% of the world’s total biodiversity. Panama and Costa Rica boast the most species and Belize and Guatemala are second.
Wildlife in Central America

Wildlife in Central America

An exhaustive list of fauna and flora for Central America is impossible here given the sheer number and diversity of species that can be found across the countries.  Tropical regions are a hive of activity when it comes to wildlife, largely because of the rainforests that flourish in these areas.

Some of the weird and wonderful species you can expect to find as a volunteer in Central America include: colourful parrots and macaws, dolphins, monkeys, dragon-like lizards, Kinkajous (also called ‘honey-bears’), toucans, hummingbirds, sloths and tarantulas.  Despite being only 0.5% of the world’s land surface, this region holds more than 7% of the planet’s biodiversity, so there is an endless amount of incredible species to see without travelling too far.

Conservation Threats

Conservation Threats

Like with most parts of South America, Central America faces the exhaustive threat of habitat loss and degradation from unchecked agricultural activities.  This includes livestock grazing, African palm oil plantations and banana, coffee and sugarcane production, which continue to exist as some of the most severe threats to wildlife and biodiversity on the planet.  This is what makes conservation efforts in the region so crucial.

Volunteering in Central America and in particular joining our conservation and research volunteer programmes in Costa Rica will enable you to play a part in protecting and conserving a wide variety of species, from sea turtles and caimans to butterflies and scarlet macaws.

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