Full Itinerary

This schedule is subject to change; remember, you’ve committed to being flexible!

Day 1.  Saturday, May 14th – Arrival to Costa Rica

AM Arrival at Juan Santamaría Airport – San José

PM Program Orientation, Welcome at Hotel – by MVI Coordinator

7:00pm Dinner at Restaurant TBD

Day 2.–  Sunday, May 15th - Transfer to Monteverde, Orientation to Program and Local Community

AM Breakfast and check-out of hotel

Transfer to Monteverde

Lunch at Hotel in Monteverde

PM Check-in

Monteverde Orientation and tour of “Downtown” Santa Elena, led by MVI Coordinator

Supermarket exercise on the local “canasta básica”

Dinner at Hotel, rest and ready to meet families tomorrow!



Day 3. Monday, May 16th - MVI Open House, Homestay Orientation,

7:00am Breakfast at Hotel, and check-out

8:00am Transfer to Monteverde Institute

8:15-9:30pm MVI open House and Lecture: “Sustainability and the Monteverde Institute” by MVI

Executive Director, Janelle Wilkins

10am-11am “Orientation to Homestays in MV”, by MVI Homestay Coordinator, Evelyn Rockwell

11am-11:30am Library Orientation, sign-in

12pm-1pm Lunch at MVI

1pm-3pm Spanish Instruction– “dichos ticos” and vocabulary specifically for interaction w/families

3pm-3:30pm Refreshments, by MVI

4pm-5pm Leave to meet your Home stay families J

Dinner with families



Day 4.  Tuesday, May 17th – Spanish Instruction, Project Descriptions

Breakfast with families (ask for Box Lunch)

8am-11am Spanish Instruction

11am-12pm Break and Journal work, led by Prof. Helmuth

12pm Box Lunch

1pm-2:30pm Description of Projects and respective sitesat MVI by MVI Coordinator

Project 1: FCC: Biological Corridor – Reforestation Project

Project 2: Hotels and Sustainability

Project 3: San Luis, Rural Sustainable Farming and Agriculture 

Project 4: Monteverde Conservation League (ACM)

Project 5: APAPNEM

2:30-2:45pm Break

2:45-3:45pm Lecture: “Integral Link between water resources, development and community

engagment” by Justin Welch at MVI

3:45-5pm Use of MVI Facilities / Journal Time

Dinner with families



Day 5. Wednesday, May18th -Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve Visit, Lecture on Change in MV

Breakfast with families, take Box Lunch

7:00am Meet at TBD Point for transfer to MV Reserve

7:30-10am Natural History Walk at MV Reserve – Guided Tour

10am-10:30am Shop and visit hummingbird gallery

10:30am transfer to MVI

10:45-12pm Journal work and use of MVI Facilities

12:00pm Box Lunch

1pm-2:30pm Lecture: “Documenting Change in a Changing Zone” by Patricia Jiménez, CASEM

2:45-3:30 Group Reflection – Prof. Helmuth

Dinner with families

Evening Activity TBA


Day 6. Thursday, May19th – Biological Corridor Reforestation Project

Breakfast with families, take Box Lunch

7:30am Meet at Point TBD for transfer to Cañitas

8am-9am Lecture: “The FCC and Biological Corridors” by FCC Representative, at LLCC

9am-12pm Reforestation work on FCC Grounds

12pm Box Lunch

Afternoon Finish reforestation work

6:00pm Meet at Place TBD for Dinner with local Reps

Evening Group Reflection – Prof. Helmuth


Day 7. Friday, May 20th– Hotels and Sustainability

Breakfast with families

AM 1.  Hotel El Establo Visit and inspection (Tour and Lecture on Certification

Program and Hotel Water Treatments (by Hotel Reps.)

2.     Hotel Poco a Poco Visit and inspection

11:30am Transfer to MVI

Box Lunch

1pm-4pm Spanish Instruction, at MVI

4pm-4:30pm snack, provided by MVI

4:30pm-6pm Dance Class with Home stay Moms- at MVI.  Learn the local Latin movesfrom an expert!

Dinner transfer home to families

Evening Activity – Out dancing


Day 8.   Saturday, May 21st San Luis visits: Eco-Bambú, Finca La Bella

Breakfast with families (Take Box Lunch)

7:15am Meet at Banco Nacional for transfer to Lower San Luis

8am-9:30am Visit with Eco-Bambú (women’s Coop. recycled paper) learn to make stationery!

9:30am Transfer to Gilberth Lobo’s Farm

10am-11am Meet with Gilberth Lobo and discuss History of Finca La Bella

11:15am Walk to Oldemar’s Farm

11:45am Lunch at Finca La Bella

12:30-3pm 12:30-1:30pm: Guided tour of Oldemar’s coffee farm

1:30-3pm: Volunteer work on Oldemar’s Farm

3:15pm Depart for MVI

3:30-5:00pm Use MVI facilities, Journal work

5:30pm Meet at Donde Henry’s Restaurant

7:00pm Lecture: “History of Monteverde, Quaker Settlement” by Martha Campbell at place TBD

Day 9.  Sunday, May 22nd – Monteverde Conservation League (ACM), guided by Mark Wainwright

Breakfast with families, NO box Lunch (PACK YOUR OVERNIGHT BAG)

9:00am Meet at Banco Nacional for departure to San Gerardo Station

10am-11:30am Hike down to Station

12:00pm Lunch at Station

1pm-2pm Lecture: Frog Declines in Monteverde, Mark Wainwright

6:00pm Dinner at Station

7:00pm Night walk with Mark Wainwright

Overnight at San Gerardo Station


Day 10.   Monday, May 23rd – Leave San Gerardo for MV, FREE TIME

Breakfast at Station

AM Activity with Mark Wainwright (check out his bio)

Lunch Check-out, leave Station, walk up hill

12:30pm Approximate time at Selvatura

FREE AFTERNOON Any and all logistics, coordination and transportation necessary for the activities of your choosing for this day are students’ individual responsibility

PM Transfer to Santa Elena

Dinner with families


Day 11. Tuesday, May 24th - Cultural and Generational Activity with APAPNEM

Breakfast with families (no Box Lunch)

AM Cooking class with local Senior Citizens’ Organization (place TBD)

Lunch “with classmates” and “teachers” – Sharing stories of Santa Elena´s past

1:30pm Transfer to MVI

2pm-4:30pm Discussion and Mock-Planning:  (with refreshment break at 3pm)


A.    “If I had a Business in Monteverde, what would I take on as part of my Social Corporate Responsibility” 

B.    “What areas should the local businesses be focusing on?”

Dinner with families

Day 12.  Wednesday, May 25th - Local Challenges in Health and Education

AM Visit with local Clinic and Ebais

Discussion with MVI’s Health Program Staff, at MVI (They have been working

for a few years on a National Science Foundation grant on the Effects of

Tourism on Monteverde’s Health.)

Lunch at Restaurant TBD (Not included in the budget)

1:00pm Visit Local Public High School: tour grounds

Interviews with students

2:00pm transfer to Local Public Elementary School

2:30pm Informal discussion with Director

4pm-5pm Time to use MVI Facilities/ Journal Work

Dinner with families

Evening Group Activity TBA



Day 13.   Thursday, May 26th - Part II of Program: Social Corporate Responsibility –

An analytical exercise of the Monteverde Experience. 

Breakfast with families, ask for Box Lunch

7:40am Meet at Banco Nacional for transfer to schools

8:00am Interviews with the Cloud Forest School

9:00am transfer to MVI

9:10am Group Analysis of Monteverde: What extra-curricular activities are available?  (VU)

11:30am Walk to Friends School

Lunch Box Lunch with students from Friends School

1:30-2:30 Use of MVI Facilities; journal work

2:30-5:30pm Discussion Series on Sustainability in Monteverde with local Representatives, at

MVI with a Refreshment break

Dinner with Panel participants to continue with informal discussions, at Restaurant TBD

EveningActivity TBA



Day 14.  Friday, May 27th- Free Day in Monteverde (subject to change)



Day 15. Saturday, May 28th - Farmer’s Market, family time

Breakfast with families

9:00am Meet group at Farmer’s Market to try out local produce (Public High School Auditorium)

10-11am Journal work and Observation activity in Santa Elena

11:00am Departure for homestays and time with families

Lunch with families


6:00pm  Homestay Farewell party and Dinner



Day 16. Sunday, May 29th - Transfer to La Fortuna – Arenal Volcano area

Breakfast with families and last farewell!

9:00am Meet at Point TBD for Jeep Boat Jeep to Arenal

11:30am Arrive at Hotel for Lunch, rest, then check-in

Students arrange/reserve tomorrow’s recreational activities of their choice

PM Ecotermales Hot Springs (dinner included)



Day 17.  Monday, May 30th – FREE DAY! 

Breakfast      at Hotel

FREE DAY Any and all logistics, coordination and transportation necessary for the activities of your choosing for this day are NOT included in this program’s budget, nor are those services MVI’s responsibility.  Lunch and Dinner on your own


Day 18.  Tuesday, May 31st - Transfer to Heredia, Homestay  

7:00am Breakfast at Hotel, and check-out

8:00am Leave for San José

12:00 pm Approximate arrival to San Joaquin de Flores, Heredia

LUNCH @ FRESAS restaurant

1pm Group reflection – Prof. Helmuth

2-4:00pm Homestay Orientation Program; Presentation on the History and Objectives of Instituto San Joaquín de Flores, led by ISJF

5:00pm Leave to meet Homestay families!

Day 19.  Wednesday, June 1st - Community Outreach Activity with local school, Heredia

Breakfast            with families

8:00am              Meet at ISJF Offices for transfer to local school site

AM                   Morning visit and service project with local school

Lunch                with participants

12:30                departure for San José on public bus

2-4pm               Clínica Bíblica guided tour

5:30                  departure for San Joaquín (by commuter train)                      

Dinner               with families

Day 20. Thursday, June 2nd - Site Visits:  ICT, Neotropic Foundation, UCR

Breakfast            with families, ask for Box Lunch

10:00am              meet at ISJF Offices for Group reflection – Prof. Helmuth

11:00am             Visit Neotropic Foundation for Lecture


2:00pm              Visit ICT office, La Uruca to discuss Certification Program

Dinner               with families

Day 21. Friday, June 3rd - ICDS Tour, visit with ALIARSE 

Breakfast            with families, NO Box Lunch
8:00am              meet at ISJF offices
8:30am              ALIARSE representative:  “Urban Development Issues”, tour and discussions led by ICDS Representative; service project at local school
Vanderbilt student-led activities;

Lunch                en route, ON YOUR OWN, not included in the program budget

1-3pm               Nature Air visit and lecture of their history, goals, and objectives

3:30pm              Visit with UCR students – organized by Juliana Coghi

Dinner               with UCR students near campus at Pomodoro San Pedro

Evening Activity TBA
Day 22.   Saturday, June 4th - Forum at Tropical Science Center Offices

Breakfast            with families

8:00am                Meet at ISJF Offices

AM                        Forum in Tropical Science Center Offices, San Pedro (Topic TBD), w/Humberto Jiménez            
                                Service project: labeling trees in city parks

Lunch                  Soda Tapia

PM                        Go home and change        

Dinner                TBA - Group Reflection – Prof. Helmuth

8:00pm              Festival Internacional de Ensambles de Percusión, Teatro Nacional de Costa Rica 

Day 23. Sunday, June 5th - Transfer to Playa Sámara

Breakfast with families

8:00am Meet ISJF Offices for transfer to Sámara

Lunch en route, not included in the program budget

2:00pm Approximate arrival to Hotel Giada in Sámara, check-in

Free time Explore and relax!

Dinner at Hotel

Day 24.   Monday, June 6th – Punta Islita Visit, Work Project

Breakfast at Hotel

8:00am Transfer to Punta Islita 

AM Visit and Tour of Hotel Punta Islita

Local Community Project Work TBD

Lunch en route, not included in the program budget

PM Pass by Carrillo, learn about Town’s Development Efforts and Challenges

Transfer to Sámara

Dinner at Hotel

Evening Group Reflection – Prof. Helmuth


Day 25. Tuesday, June 7th - FREE GROUP DAY!

Breakfast at Hotel

Transport to Playa Carrillo – spend all day at a pristine beach


Day 26. Wednesday, June 8th - Transfer to Heredia, Hotel Bougainvillea

7:00am Breakfast and check out of Hotel

8:00am Transfer to Heredia, Hotel Bougainvillea

Lunch en route, not included in the program budget

PM Arrive and check-in at Hotel

Tour of Hotel and discussion of Certification Program standards

Dinner at Restaurant TBD

Evening Visit a Mall, free time

Day 27. Thursday, June 9th - Niños Mariposa –DEBra Foundation Activity

Breakfast at Hotel- Group reflection – Prof. Helmuth

AM Lecture: “Social Responsibility at Hotel Bougainvillea” – DEBra Foundation –Presentation of Niños Mariposa

PM Visit to Parque InBio

5:15pm Meet at Hotel for transfer to Restaurant TBD


Day 28. Friday, June 10th – Activities TBA


5:30pm Departure for Farewell Dinner @ TBD


Day 29. Saturday, June 11th - Transfers to Airport, On to New Adventures! J

Breakfast and check-out at Hotel

AM Transfers to Airport for late AM or early PM departure flights