2019 Costa Rica 15 Day Sea Turtle Conservation Expedition

Dear Families, Friends, and Travelers – Welcome to the 2019 Costa Rica 15 Day Sea Turtle Conservation Expedition! We have created two webpages dedicated to this exciting program so that travelers are as informed as possible throughout the process. The first page, Pre-Enrollment, is meant to share exciting details, highlights and pertinent info that participants will want to know before enrolling. Once enrolled, the Post Enrollment page, is meant to prepare travelers for participation on the adventure ahead.

Please be sure to review the information on the appropriate page thoroughly and we can't wait to start our enriching adventure!

Travel Dates: June 26, 2019 - July 10, 2019
WTT/SSA Contact:
Program Tuition: $3,590 - or - $3,411 with discount if paid in full
Airfare not included in program tuition
Estimated Airfare: $700

Tuition Calculator

Our admissions team makes the payment process simple, offering multiple payment options and easy monthly payment plans.

Program Tuition: $3,590

Pay in Full

Pay in full at the time of enrollment and receive a 5% discount off your program tuition! Your program tuition with this discount would be:


Payment Plan

Pay a $500 deposit at the time of enrollment, then we set up an automatic monthly payment plan. If you apply today, your estimated* monthly payments would be:


* This is an approximate price. Your exact total will be confirmed by the Admissions Director upon enrollment.

Costa Rica Conservation Expedition: Tortuga Feliz

From white sand beaches to misty cloud forests, from towering volcanoes to beautiful rivers that cut through tropical canyons, and to hospitable, friendly communities, Costa Rica has it all. Having abolished its military over 50 years ago, this tiny democratic republic has long been known for its pacifism, commitment to environmental protection, and its status as a destination for those seeking safe yet exciting adventure travel set against breathtaking scenery. However, despite an extensive tourism industry, in many parts of Costa Rica there remains a need for help and service. Our programs offer unique access to Costa Rica’s best-kept secrets and friendliest communities. We are confident you will love the land of Pura Vida as much as we do!

Conservation Expeditions

Conservation Expeditions

Conservation Expeditions invite students to participate in scientific research projects, learn about diverse ecosystems, and lend a hand in community-based biodiversity conservation efforts.

Program Highlights

Check out some of the possible featured experiences of your coming adventure! Each customized itinerary is unique, but these are just a few of the activities which may be available during your program.

Zip-line though the jungle

Trek to a beautiful waterfall deep in the jungle

Visit one of Costa Rica's most beautiful volcanoes

Raft down one of Costa Rica's best rivers

Release baby sea turtles into the wild (seasonal)

Hike through the tropical rainforest and learn about local ecosystems

Assist with research efforts at the Playa Tortuga Research Station

Assist with surveys of marine and terrestrial wildlife

The Itinerary

We work hard to create engaging, educational, and truly immersive itineraries for our travelers. However, we also know that travel can be unpredictable, so we always design our experiences to be flexible enough to allow for adjustments based on group interests, unexpected opportunities, and any weather or safety concerns that may arise during your program. Should changes to the itinerary occur, we will notify travelers and families as quickly as possible. 

June 26USA - San JoséToday the group will travel from the USA to Costa Rica. Flights usually arrive in the evening. After arrival, the group will settle into their hotel for the evening and have an orientation meeting where the group will discuss the upcoming trip in detail.  Hotel Casa Cielo Grande
June 27Alajuela - La FortunaIn the morning, the group will travel for about three hours to La Fortuna. We will enjoy a traditional Costa Rican lunch and have a short cultural orientation meeting before jumping straight into our first adventure activity -- ziplining through the rainforest!San Bosco Inn
June 28La FortunaFollowing breakfast, we will go on a wildlife and nature hike in Arenal National Park. During the day, we will visit the massive Lake Arenal and in the evening we will soak in hot springs at the base of an active volcano.San Bosco Inn
June 29La Fortuna - Widecast Field StationToday the group will travel to the Caribbean coast. After a beautiful and scenic boat ride, we will arrive at the WIDECAST Field Station. After an introduction and tour of the station, we will begin our nightly beach patrols in search of female leatherback and green turtles.Field Station
June 30Widecast Field StationDays at the WIDECAST Field Station will be dedicated to helping research assistants with their personal research projects or camp maintenance tasks, such as beach cleanups or equipment inventories. In the nighttime, we will continue the important task of patrolling the beach.Field Station
July 1Widecast Field StationThe morning will be spent on assisting with the research projects and camp maintenance tasks. After a hearty lunch, we will go on an exciting river biodiversity tour with a local expert who will help us identify the diverse plants and animals that call the river home.Field Station
July 2Widecast Field StationIn the morning, we will have an exciting lecture on sea turtle biology, ecology and conservation. In the afternoon, there will be an optional rainforest hike, and in the evening, there will be an exhumation demonstration of hatched turtle nests.Field Station
July 3Widecast Field StationToday we will continue assisting with field research and projects and learning about sea turtle biology. In the afternoon, there will be free time to relax and unwind.Field Station
July 4Widecast Field StationAfter the morning's fieldwork session, we will participate in an organized local beach cleanup project. Field Station
July 5Widecast Field StationToday we will continue assisting with field research and projects and learning about sea turtle biology. In the afternoon, there will be free time to relax and unwind.Field Station
July 6Widecast Field StationIt is our last day to complete our research projects and help out around the camp. After lunch, we will have time to play soccer with the local community and in the evening we will celebrate with our new friends with a fiesta de despedida!Field Station
July 7Widecast Field Station - Playa ChiquitaIn the morning we will go on a boat ride from Tortuga Feliz and travel to the southern Caribbean coast. After all of our hardwork, we will have some much deserved time to relax and swim on the beach.Hotel Costa de Papito
July 8Playa Chiquita  Today the group will have the unique opportunity to visit the indigenous village, Bri Bri. Arriving by motorized canoes along the Río Sixaola, we will be led on a tour of the village and participate in the process of making chocolate from the raw cacao plant. We will also learn about medicinal plants and have the chance to interact with villagers.Hotel Costa de Papito
July 9Playa Chiquita - San JoseA full day is ahead of us, with white water rafting along the Pacuare River and lunch along the banks. In the afternoon, we will head back to San Jose for our final dinner together before our international departure the following morningHotel Casa Cielo Grande
July 10Alajuela - USAAfter breakfast, we will head to the airport for a morning departure back to the USA.Home!


In order to provide a safe and memorable experience for our travelers, teachers, staff, Program Leaders and Country Directors, we follow strict guidelines when deciding on lodging, making reservations, and assigning program participants to rooms.

Travelers will always be grouped in rooms and/or sleeping areas by gender, and will never share rooms with people who are not associated with their Walking Tree group. Group Organizers and Program Leaders will be roomed separately from each other and from other students. Walking Tree partners with locally-operated, three star or equivalent hotels that are centrally located, clean, safe and wifi-enabled. 

Below are a few examples of our partner hotels. Although these are our preferred providers, they are subject to change based on availability. Your final itinerary will provide complete information on your accommodations in the cities you will be visiting.
San Bosco Inn

Right in downtown La Fortuna, San Bosco Inn offers a great location, a pool, restaurant and cozy bedrooms. This is the ideal location from which you can explore and enjoy nearby waterfalls, caves, thermal hot springs, and of course the amazing Arenal Volcano.

La Tortuga Feliz

La Tortuga Feliz is situated on a beautiful isolated beach right behind what people refer to as “The Amazon” of Costa Rica, a network of mangrove rainforest, rivers, canals and lagoons. This program is run by volunteers for volunteers, and students will share dorm-style rustic lodging with separate dorms for boys and girls, shared bathrooms, and no electricity or hot water. The basic accommodations at Tortuga Feliz align with their commitment to environmental conservation and serve as the base of operations for turtle conservation work in the area.

La Costa de Papito

La Costa de Papito is a lush eden between the edge of the jungle and the beautiful white sand beach of Playa Cocles. Selected for its philosophy of travel and hospitality, students will have a truly Caribbean experience in this tropical paradise.

Hotel Casa Cielo Grande

Casa Cielo Grande is a beautiful property ideally located twenty minutes away from the airport. Close yet high in the mountains, the views of the Central Valley are great and the pool is stunning. Perfect for groups, the house offers clean and fresh rooms that will make you feel at home as soon as you land in Costa Rica.

Safety and Support


My son had a wonderful experience in Costa Rica, helped to build a preschool classroom, and has created memories that will last a lifetime!

Parent of traveler on Costa Rica Service Adventure

Your Adventure Includes

Group Airfare Not Included

In order to give our travelers the flexibility for choosing the best itinerary and payment (cash vs mileage, vs rewards) for their particular situation, we do not include airfare in our program tuitions. Please visit this link for more details. 

Program Tuition Excludes: Airfare to destination country, Travel insurance, baggage fees, airline minor fees, passport/visa fees, laundry, souvenirs, and activities not listed on itinerary.

Need to Raise Money? We have you covered.

Our travelers are provided with fundraising opportunities that are easy to implement and fun to take part in. Our flagship fundraiser involves selling bird-friendly, fair trade coffee from our host countries. There is no limit to the amount you can raise, so get started now by selling coffee or referring your friends to earn credit toward your program!


WTT coffee
Resource center

Resource Center

Why should high school students travel abroad? What happens if a participant gets sick? How quickly do we need to enroll? We’re sure you have plenty of questions and we’ve got you covered! Visit our Resource Center to discover the answers to your most pressing questions and contact us anytime with additional questions.

Learn More

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