U of SC Capstone Scholars Spring Break

University of South Carolina
About The Adventure

Costa Rica

One of the most bioverse countries in the world, this tropical paradise is the perfect place for young people to explore themselves and their surroundings.

This trip begins at the San Jose International Airport, heads to the rainforest near La Fortuna and the Arenal Volcano, then continues to the Central Pacific Coast in the towns of Quepos and Manuel Antonio.

See Manuel Antonio National Park, monkeys, sloths, crocodiles, iguanas, incredible waterfalls and so much more! 


March 5-13, 2022


Costa Rica

Regular Cost:


What's Included:

  • 9 days / 8 nights shared accommodations in villas
  • 8 breakfasts, 3 lunches, and 8 dinners
  • Guided tour of a famous eco-lodge farm
  • Three private round trip shuttles to La Fortuna
  • Local community cooking experience
  • Zip line canopy tour
  • National Park entrance fee
  • Costa Rican coffee plantation tour
  • Whitewater rafting
  • Private airport pick-up upon arrival
  • Private airport drop-off upon departure
  • Custom Experiences Trip Leader
  • Personal recommendations for optional activities
  • Participation in UNIV 290-Pura Vida: Sustainability of Earth & Self
View Host Bio


*schedule subject to change due to weather and other local factors

Arrival in Costa Rica

Welcome to Costa Rica! It's time to see what the Pura Vida Lifestyle is all about!

Arrive at the San Jose International Airport before 12:30 pm where you will be met by your Trip Leader.

Take private transportation to a world-famous eco-lodge. Along the way we'll stop and tour a coffee plantation, followed by dinner.

Settle into your bunks and let nature sing you to sleep.

Eco-Lodge Tour & Adventure

Participate in optional yoga in the heart of the rainforest and eat a healthy breakfast with locally sourced ingredients grown just outside your bungalow.

Tour the permaculture farm and see exactly where breakfast came from. Learn about green initiatives, sustainability, and regeneration at the world-class eco-lodge.

Hike to El Mirador lookout point or visit a small Costa Rican town to enjoy breathtaking views of Lake Arenal. Have the option to fly through the treetops on one of the world’s best zip-line canopy tours.

In the evening, have a class reflection followed by a swim in the naturally warmed pool.

La Fortuna

Depart to the rainforest town of La Fortuna after enjoying optional yoga, breakfast, and a fresh cup of Costa Rican coffee.

Visit a local waterfall and feel the power of nature before you.

For lunch, learn to make tortillas, medicinal plants, and process sugar sugar cane as you wait for your meal.

Look out for sloths, monkeys, and tree frogs--three of the coolest jungle creatures in this region.

In the evening, have a class reflection, rest in your hammock, and journal.

Rainforest Adventure

Today, you'll go whitewater rafting which is guaranteed to get your adrenaline pumping.

Enjoy an included casado lunch before heading back to the eco-lodge.

Have dinner and enjoy your last night in the rainforest before heading to the other side of Costa Rica tomorrow.

Depart to the Beach

Depart the rainforest to drive to the coastal town of Manuel Antonio.

On the way to the beach, stop to see crocodiles before arriving at Playa Hermosa. Watch the locals surf one of the most famous waves in the world.

Have a Costa Rican dinner and enjoy a beautiful sunset on the black sand beach.

Head to Manuel Antonio for a class reflection and settle into your hotel nearby both beach and town.

Cultral Exchange

Wake up by the sound of toucans or scarlet macaws and enjoy your first Costa Rican breakfast.

Head to the local town of Quepos to understand how the local people live in this fishing village. Participate in a cultural exchange at a local community center to make lunch with local señoras and their families.

In the afternoon, jump into the Pacific Ocean and lay under an almond tree at Playa Espadilla, consistently ranked one of the best beaches in the world.

Return to the hotel for dinner and optional salsa dance lessons.

Manuel Antonio National Park

Enjoy some Costa Rican coffee and a gallo pinto breakfast to start your day off right.

Today, enter Manuel Antonio National Park, one of the best places for viewing wildlife anywhere on the planet. Look out for three types of monkeys and two types of sloths swinging through the forest.

Eat lunch near the beach and cool off after your hike.

In the late afternoon visit the local farmer's market to eat tropical fruits, homemade cheeses, and ceviche.

Choose Your Own Adventure

Today, take advantage of all the adventure that this region of Costa Rica has to offer.

Go deep into the jungle for an optional canyoning adventure where you'll rappel down a waterfall and descend into a lagoon on the infamous "monkey drop".

Alternatively, opt to take a surf lesson, or relax on the beach. These activities will be at your own expense.

Celebrate your last night with a farewell dinner and a night out on the town.

Depart Costa Rica

Enjoy your final cup of Costa Rican coffee, and remember to bring some back home for friends and family.

Say "adios" to this biodiverse wonderland and take the shuttle to San Jose International Airport.

Congratulate yourself for a successful Capstone Adventure!