Living in a Surf Camp in Costa Rica
Here at Workaway, we now have an amazing 40,000+ hosts involved in our volunteer exchange projects and communities from all over the world. From agricultural work, scuba diving, yoga retreats and most things in between, we are so proud to be associated with so many amazing hosts. Going by the name of ‘Workaway Host of the Month’ we will reveal more of what it is like to be a host and let you into their routines and how their projects have changed since opening their doors to you guys!
We recently travelled to Costa Rica to check out some Workaway projects and met Carlos who runs a surf camp in Tamarindo together with Michael (who first came to the camp through workaway!). We dug deeper into their journey to share it all with you.
After flying to Costa Rica and searching for the optimal land to putting this dream into reality, all the answers were found in this little piece of jungle in Tamarindo, Costa Rica. With that same self-sustainability approach in mind, using natural resources, including the wood straight from the jungle, bamboo, and multiple other natural tools, the surf camp quickly began to come to fruition. While building the camp, and surfing together every day, we began to feel something special was on its way.
To give an idea of a typical day at our surf camp in Costa Rica, below is a rough timeline from the beginning of the day to its conclusion:
6 AM: Morning surf at Langosta beach for intermediate and advanced surfers. Surf in Tamarindo beach for beginners.
7 AM: Yoga classes in the camp, sometimes on the beach while others choose to surf instead.
8:30 AM: A large family style breakfast all together in our dining area under a large mango tree.
9:00 AM – 11:00 AM: Most general volunteers will complete their daily tasks.
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM: We provide shuttles to Tamarindo beach (unless it is one of two days a week we do special excursion & surf trips) for our guests/volunteers.
1:00 PM: Surf lessons and relaxing on the beach.
4:00 PM: A serene yoga session on the beach.
5:30 PM: Watch the sunset on the beach and then provide shuttles back to camp.
7:30 PM: A large family style dinner buffet in the dining area under the mango tree.
9:00 PM: After dinner most campers indulge in recreational conversation, music, and general entertainment around the camp bar and chill out area.
10:30 PM: We provide shuttles to the downtown Tamarindo nightlife, where specific days call for different types of entertainment out and about in the city.
1:30 AM: We provide our final shuttles back to the surf camp.
How has your project changed since hosting Workawayers?
2. Teaching English to kids: Two workawayers who were both professional English teachers, brought this beautiful idea of promoting the English language to kids with difficult access to education in the surrounding areas of Tamarindo. In their time here, they would initiate and invite these kids from different neighbourhoods to spend their days interacting with our diverse group of Workawayers at camp, learning English, playing soccer, climbing the mango trees, cooking and grilling hamburgers, and ending the days teaching them surf on the beach. It’s hard to think of a better feeling than hearing the simultaneous laughing of the kids and workawayers throughout the extent of those days. It was truly amazing.
Do you have any advice for anyone looking to go on a Workaway trip, and how would you define what makes a good volunteer?
Most people who sign up to be a Workawayer already have the ambition to travel on their own, test themselves, and ultimately grow through their experiences. But, there will certainly be times that things are uncomfortable or don’t go as planned, and that is when you sometimes just need to take a deep breath, a step back, and remind yourself that it’s all part of the process. You find out a lot about yourself in those uncomfortable moments, and like with all happenings in life, without the obstacles and lows of your adventures, the highs and accomplishments you experience aren’t nearly as exhilarating or memorable.
The lessons you learn from that balance in your travel will undoubtedly last a lifetime.
Many thanks again to Carlos and Michael for showing us around the surf camp, sharing the great meals and for all the wonderful time in Tamarindo during our visit, also of course for the inspiring interview! We are so proud to have you guys as a part of the Workaway community! Pura vida! 🙂