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Costa Rica January 2023

COR 375 Kim Bowen & Dr. Mark Correll

  • No cost for those with full CCS benefit
  • $1,400 for those with half CCS benefit
  • $2,800 for those with no CCS benefit

The small country of Costa Rica is an oasis of tranquility, democracy and education. The oldest democracy in Latin America enjoys an international reputation for its friendly people and the outstanding beauty of its diverse environment and wildlife. Scientists have estimated that close to 4 percent of the Earth’s species live in Costa Rica. Explore the wonders of a cloud forest, search for the rare quetzal bird, and learn about the rain forest up close as you become knowledgeable in bio-diversity. Meet indigenous Native Americans and become aware of their unique culture. Costa Ricans call themselves “Ticos.” You will get to know the gracious Ticos through family stays in a small mountain community.

Learning activities may include:


Visit a language school and possibly take a university tour. Interact with university students about higher education, allowing students to compare and contrast cultural and academic expectations.


Students will enjoy a home stay immersion with the coffee farmers. The stay will include meals, family activities, church, and possibly special family gatherings. Students will live life with the hospitable Costa Ricans and may pick coffee.


Visit a national monument for a Costa Rican who worked for and achieved civil rights for all Costa Rican minorities. Tour the nation’s capital and historic sites. Dialogue with a former press secretary for a Costa Rican president.


There are several opportunities to meet missionaries in their service areas. Students will examine the role of Catholicism, the official national religion of Costa Ricans and its influence on culture.


Experience the market in San Jose where bartering and negotiating are the principal methods of exchange.  Speak with the farmers and learn about local agricultural cooperatives including the cooperative for the exportation of coffee.

Other Highlights may Include:

  • View an active volcano. Costa Rica has some of the largest geyser-type craters in the world.
  • Interact with impoverished children in a Nicaraguan barrio project.
  • Meet with the Nicaraguan vice-consul to Costa Rica to learn about immigrants in Costa Rica and hear her personal story of the tragic conflicts in Nicaragua.
  • Visit indigenous Native Americans in their isolated mountain community and see them perform the Danza de Diablitos.
  • Visit Manuel Antonio National Park to encounter wildlife in its natural habitat and experience beautiful beaches.
  • Experience the capital city of San Jose, visiting the Plaza de Cultura and historical museums.

“Costa Rica is a gorgeous country. The people are friendly, the food is amazing, and Kim Bowen is an absolute treasure. I would go back every year if they let me.”

Andrew Sutton

“Costa Rica is only the size of a pin head compared to the rest of the world but the amount of love, passion and pride that it contains is enormous. This country has such an amazing history with many people who have sacrificed everything to fight for what was right for their home. Costa Ricans are unlike any other: They are kind, selfless, relatable and laid back. Overall, Costa Rica is an extraordinary place with so much to offer and it made a huge impact on my life.”

Rachel Dennison

“Get to know unique people with stories and lives very different than your own. Partake in Central American culture and the Pura Vida lifestyle. Do life with a family in a rural, mountainous, coffee growing community. Explore rain forests filled with rivers, waterfalls, and incredible plant and animal life. Deepen your faith in God as you talk to and worship with believers who see God’s handiwork in everything around them.”

Caleb Shotts
Student group in front of dormant volcanic crater in Costa Rica

Travel Information

Departure Dates

January 2023 experiences may begin sometime during the last week of December 2022 and last 19–23 days. Students should not make irreversible plans until their departure date is confirmed by the CCS office in early Fall 2022.

Health & Safety

This experience, like all CCS experiences, is subject to political and safety realities at the time of departure. CCS options can be physically and emotionally intense and stretching. Before enrolling, all participants should consult the disclosures on Physical Hardships of CCS.

Passport and immunizations required (both at additional cost).

Trip Costs

CCS program costs do not include: tuition, passport, immunizations, or the $150 study away fee.

CCS trips are not guaranteed and are subject to change.