The Outdoor Recreation Program just got a little bit cooler (I didn’t think it was possible either!). ORP is about to host their first international trip to Costa Rica! Participants will get the chance to rappel down waterfalls, hike through the rainforest, go whitewater rafting, surfing, and immerse themselves in the Costa Rican culture. Talk about the trip of a lifetime! And the best part is, you can still sign up! The Costa Rica Adventure will take place from January 3rd to January 11th. Keep reading for a detailed trip itinerary of all the awesome things you can be involved in.
Day 1 – Arrive at the Juan Santamaria Airport (SJO). Travel through San Jose to our first family homestay on the outskirts of the city. Meet your guides, pack, orientation, and get ready for an adventure!
Day 2 – 6 am, depart from San Jose homestay to Las Rejas driving. Eat breakfast on the way and arrive at the trailhead. Begin hike in the rainforest to reach at La Flecha for the first-night camping in the rainforest. This hike will be approximately 5 hours long (students need to be ready and wanting to hike into the rainforest!). Our hike will take us up and through both the rain and cloud forest zones where monkeys, cascading waterfalls, lush vegetation, and countless colorful tropical birds will be abound. This challenging but rewarding hike covers seven miles of incredible forest and will end at a mountaintop campsite near Cruce de Tonita.
Day 3 – Hike 3 hours to La Casa de Magdalena to enjoy some great homemade Costa Rican food and beautiful views of the valley of Piedras Blancas. Here, we will go on a fruit tour of the area, where we will learn about and taste test local fruits.
Day 4 – We wake up at La Casa de Magdalena and eat breakfast before making our 1-hour hike to Piedras Blancas. Upon arrival, we will be greeted with open arms from the Lopez family. Most likely on this day, we will rappel down a 120-foot waterfall! In the afternoon we explore the village, play soccer, and enjoy our new homestay. At night, we make tortillas and eat dinner before falling asleep to the sounds of the Rio Savegre.
Day 5 – Jump in the river of Piedras Blancas and check out the surrounding area of the village of Piedras Blancas. Make sugar out of sugarcane using the traditional system of the ‘Trapiche.’ Explore a 900 feet deep cave in the rainforest where you’ll see stalactites and stalagmites (depending on weather, time, etc.).
Day 6 – After eating another delicious Costa Rican breakfast, we hike to the Fonsecas Family Eco-Lodge alongside the Savegre River. Take in the beautiful views of the Savegre River and enjoy the natural gardens that surround this area. Activities here include the canopy over the Rio Savegre, tree climb, medicinal plant tour, hand-making chocolate!
Day 7 – 2-hour hike to Brujo to arrive at the Rio Savegre to begin our 16-mile rafting trip. Eat lunch alongside the river and enjoy the beautiful waterfalls and great rapids. Transport to stay at Uvita beach and marine reserve to enjoy afternoon sunset and relax.
Day 8 – Head to Uvita for surf instruction in Bahia Ballena national park! We stay 200 yards from the beach where we have our own surf cabinas. Beach clean-up of the national park, leadership building activities through team development and beach games. Final dinner will be at the beach.
Day 9 – Depart from SJO and head back home after an amazing trip!
Does this sound like a ton of fun? There are still open spots for you to be part of this trip! Head to the ORP desk in State Gym for more information on pricing and to get signed up! In just a few months, you can be surfing, hiking, rappelling, and rafting in Costa Rica. Sounds like an excellent adventure to me!