Come and help us around our Rafting and Outdoor Adventure Center in La Virgen, Costa Rica


Costa Rica

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 Min stay requested: at least 2 weeks

  • Description


    We are a family-owned and operated business since 1990. Most of our family lives at the outdoor center, so when you stay with us, you'll experience what it's really like to live like a Costa Rican.

    We offer rafting and kayaking tours on the Sarapiqui River, which runs right behind our center. There are constantly people from all over the world visiting us to experience whitewater and enjoy our beautiful jungle backyard. We also offer ecotours through other local companies like canopy tours, horseback riding, chocolate tours, and more.

    Before everything, we care most about mother nature and the river. In every aspect of our operation, we act sustainably: reusing plastic bags, composting, using bamboo straws instead of plastic straws, etc. We are also constantly protecting the rivers by making sure we and our neighbors are not polluting it or damaging the shoreline.

    We are located in the town of La Virgen de Sarapiqui, a quiet country town with friendly people and small, locally-owned stores and restaurants. Here, the people like to go to bed early and wake up early with the sun and the wildlife.

    We are seeking people who want to relax into the jungle life, we like to have fun though no partiers please, as we are an alcohol free environment. So if you want to experience a simple, healthy lifestyle and spend most of your time outdoors, we invite you to join us.



    Nous sommes une entreprise familiale en activite depuis 1990. La plupart de notre famille vit sur place donc en rejoignant l'equipe, vous experimenterez la vie au sein d'une famille locale.

    Nous proposons des tours de rafting et de kayak sur le riviere Sarapiqui, qui longe notre centre. Nous recevons des voyageurs du monde entier venus decouvrir les rapides et la jungle. Nous avons egalement des partenariats avec les activites du coin proposant des tours de tyrolienne, ballades a cheval, fabrication de chocolat...

    Nous faisons de la nature notre priorite. Dans toutes nos actions quotidiennes, nous agissons de maniere ecologique afin de diminuer notre empreinte carbonne et refleter ce mode de vie aupres de nos clients (reutiliser les sacs en plastique, utiliser des pailles de bamboo au lieu de pailles en plastique...). Nous prenons soin de la riviere comme de la jungle en veillant a ce que personne ne les pollue.

    Nous nous situons dans le village de La Virgen de Sarapiqui, un petit villge calme aux gens accueillants. Ici, les habitants se couchent tot et se reveillent au rythme du soleil et des animaux de la jungle.

    On cherche des gens qui veulent s'imprégner dans la jungle et on aime bien s'amuser mais on ne s'intéresse pas a avoir des gens qui veulent faire la fete vu qu'on est un lieu sans alcool. Donc si vous souhaitez experimenter un mode de vie simple et sain, ou vous passerez la plupart de votre temps dehors, a vos stylos ;)

    PS: Nous ne parlons pas francais mais souhaitons apprendre cette langue donc si vous la parlez c'est encore mieux! En echange, vous pourrez pratiquer l'espagnol et/ou l'anglais.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    DIY and building projects
    Elderly Companionship
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Language practice
    Art Projects
    Help with Computers/ Internet

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    When you help and stay with us, you will be living in a tropical rainforest, right on the River. During your free time, you can go swimming in the "posa natural" (swimming hole) right behind our base, go on excursions (waterfall posa azul for example). When there is space available, you can join our rafting trips. You will also have access (discounts) to other tours in the area such as ziplining, rappeling, chocolate tours, horseback riding, and more. Explore the many species of flora and fauna right on our property and learn how to grow your own organic vegetables and herbs. You will also learn about the many ways we constantly work to decrease our carbon footprint and take care of our mother earth. If you take the time to talk to our family who live on site, you will be able to improve your Spanish and learn a lot about the history of Costa Rica, the town of La Virgen, David and SOC family.

    The Sarapiqui Outdoor Center is also willing to offer volunteers the opportunity to become certified Swift-water Rescuers as well as Level 3 Whitewater paddle-raft guides! All certifications would be completed through the American Canoe Association (ACA) which is the global standard for whitewater certifications. The purchase of a $25 ACA membership is required, and the combined cost for both Swift-water Rescue and Whitewater guide courses would be $400 payable in cash to the SOC.

    David is a thoroughly experienced whitewater boater, both in a raft and a kayak, and is a certified ACA instructor. All course activities will take place on or near SOC site. Breakfast and lunch are included as volunteers are still expected to help out as needed, although during the course’s duration the certification process will be priority. Please bring your own gear if possible. This includes, but is not limited to: Class 5 rescue PFD, helmet, flip line, 2 Prusik knots, 3 locking carabiners, a whistle and a river knife. Upon completion of both courses, which take roughly 3-6 days in total, volunteers will walk away with an ACA membership, an ACA diploma showing they are Swift-water Rescue certified, and an ACA diploma showing they are either Class II or Class III paddle-raft guide certified. (Guide certification is dependent on participants own skill and competency levels shown throughout the course.) If interested in taking these courses, please mention so when reaching out for volunteer opportunities so we can plan accordingly.

    En travaillant chew nous, vous experimenterez la vie dans la jungle, le long de la riviere Sarapiqui. Pendant votre temps libre, vous pourrez vous baigner dans la riviere, partir en excursions (cascade posa azul, par exemple). Quand il y a de la place, vous pourrez joindre les tours de rafting et kayaks. Vous aurez aussi des reductions sur les activites de la region (tyrolienne, rappel, fabrication de chocolat, ballades a cheval...). Vous pourrez observer les nombreuses varietes qu'offrent la faune et la flore sur notre terrain et apprendre a faire pousser des legumes et herbes bio. Vous apprendrez egalement beaucoup sur la facon de diminuer son empreinte carbonne et prendre soin de notre planete, Si vous prenez le temps de parler avec le reste de la famille, vous pourrez ameliorer votre espagnol et apprendre sur l'histoire du Costa Rica, la ville de La Virgen, David et la famille SOC.

    Le Centre propose également des cours de certification. Veuillez vous renseigner pour plus d'informations.

  • Help


    At present, the help we need is:

    1. Office assistant and website development. French speakers as a priority for costumer service and to help translate documents in French. Tasks include helping in the office either in the morning, afternoon or evenings (the schedule can be flexible). The responsibilities would include answering the phone, email, and Facebook messages, greeting tourists who come by, and maintaining the reception area. While there is no one to attend to in the office, we would like you to be able to work on the website (Wordpress), to increase SEO/html, eMail, Marketing, social media... (vegan breakfast only and accomodation)

    2. A Volunteer Coordinator. We are looking to expand and have someone help to develop a volunteer program at the center. We want someone who is creative, has initiative and wants to stay here long term (min 2 months- max 6 months). Tasks would include orienting new volunteers, maintaining the workaway page-messages, maintain a working calendar for volunteers and assess the needs for new volunteers to help with a variety of other projects than aforementionned (for ex: reforestation program, community service, and more). Due to your commitment to staying long term, in this position you would be provided 3 vegan meals a day and accomodations.

    Best regards.


    1. Assistante administrative et développement du site web. Les francophones seront notre priorité afin de nous aider au niveau du service a la clientele et pour aider a la traduction de documents pour notre site web. Nous avons besoin d'aide a la réception soit le matin, l'apres midi ou en fin de journée (l'horaire peut etre tres flexible). Cela implique repondre au telephone, rentrer les reservations, repondre aux e-mails, messages facebook, et accueillir les clients. Lorsque vous n'etes pas occupés avec ces taches on souhaite que vous travaillez sur notre site web (Wordpress), augmenter SEO/html, marketing...ce poste inclue un petit déjeuner vegan ainsi que l'hébergement.

    2. Une coordinatrice des bénévoles. On veut accroitre nos services et avoir quelqu'un qui peut assister au développement d'un programme de bénévoles. On recherche quelq'un de créatif, plein d'idées qui pourra rester avec nous long terme (minimum 2 months- max 6months). Les taches incluent: orientation des nouveaux bénévoles, maintenir le site de workaway et les messages, maintenir un calendrier de bénévoles et gérer les besoins pour des nouveaux bénévoles car nous voulons offrir une variété d'opportunités de projets bénévoles au niveau de la communauté (ex: programme de reboisement, s'impliquer a l'école...). Vu que ce poste recquiert un engagement long terme, nous offrons les 3 repas ainsi que l'hébergement.

    A bientot!

  • Languages

    Languages spoken
    English: Fluent
    Spanish: Fluent

    This host offers a language exchange
    This host has indicated that they are interested in sharing their own language or learning a new language.
    Please contact them directly for more information.

  • Accommodation


    We provide accommodations of either camping or a shared room. The room is shared with a staff, seperate beds. There is the option of a single or double (for couples) tent which includes blankets, and pillows. It is recommended to bring a sleeping bag if desired. There are shared bathrooms, shared showers, and dressing rooms. We provide food for a vegan breakfast. There is a communal kitchen available for use with use of oils, spices, gas stove, and kitchen tools, as well as a refrigerator, microwave, and coffee maker. We have a communal living space outside with couches and hammocks. We also have Wi-fi and a laundry area.

    Nous offrons l'hebergement en camping ou dans une chambre partagée avec un staff (lits séparés), au choix ainsi que le petit dejeuner vegan. Il y a le choix d'une tente simple ou double (pour couple) et comprend couvertures et oreillers. Nous recommandons d'amener un sac de couchage si vous etre frileux. Il y a une salle de bain partagee et une cuisine disponible avec tous les condiments et ustensiles a disposition. Nous avons un espace de detente avec hammacks et canapes ainsi que le wifi et une machine a laver.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    There is a bus stop right in front of our base with transit to La Virgen town center, Puerto Viejo, and San Jose. We are very close to La Tirimbina natural reserve, with hiking trails and a suspension bridge. During your time off, you can explore the town, go out to Puerto Viejo, or just hang by the river and explore the wildlife right in our backyard.

    Il y a un arret de bus en face de notre centre avec un transit a La Virgen centre ville, Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui et San Jose. Nous sommes tres proche de la reserve naturelle La Tirimbina, avec des excursions. Pendant votre temps libre, vous pourrez explorer la ville, aller a Puerto Viejo, partir en excursions ou contempler la nature depuis notre centre.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?


  • ...

    Hours expected

    4 hours a day 5 days a week (breakfast included-vegan)

Host ref number: 389736384363