Field Trips for Heredia, Costa Rica
You are encouraged to participate in the included program field trips. These excursions generally take place on Saturdays. In addition to the included program field trips, you'll also have field trips as part of many of your courses and have numerous informal activities that expose you to the local culture as well.
Dates and exact locations are at the discretion of the Resident Director and they vary from session and session and semester to semester. Common destinations include the following.
Arenal Volcano and Hanging Bridges
Arenal rises 1,657 meters above sea level and overlooks Lake Arenal—both are part of Arenal Volcano National Park. Arenal is the country's most active volcano. Its eruptions are frequent but moderate and can be viewed without danger as long as you stay behind the safety perimeter. At night the lava and incandescent rocks make for a spectacular sight. The top of the volcano is usually surrounded by clouds. It is touted as good luck to see the whole volcano without clouds. The Arenal Hanging Bridges overlook a dense canopy, providing safe and easy access to birds, flowers, and vegetation of the primary rain forest.
Café Britt and Poás Volcano
Learn the history, traditions, and culture of the coffee country. The adventure begins on the scenic grounds of a coffee plantation in Heredia, where you will come to understand what makes Costa Rican coffee among the best in the world. Poás Volcano is the most easily accessible active volcano in the world and the park is home to more than 80 species of birds.
Canopy and Crocodile Trip
The Vista Los Sueños Canopy is located in Herradura, next to Jaco Beach on the central coast, and offers breathtaking views of the Gulf of Nicoya and the Pacific Ocean. It is set on approximately 222 acres of land and features a transitional forest which is a mixture of the dry forest of the north and the rain forest of the south. You'll enjoy the many wonders of Costa Rican biodiversity as well as we navigate along the Tárcoles River to observe crocodiles. The boat will also explore mangroves where you can observe an abundance of birds such as the beautiful scarlet macaw.
INBIO Parque and Irazú Volcano
The 20-acre INBIO Parque interpretive trails allow visitors to experience living samples of Costa Rica's native ecosystems. Irazú is Costa Rica's largest volcano. Robins, owls, porcupines, hummingbirds, foxes, rabbits, and coyotes are a few of the animals that can be spotted in this national park. Atop Irazú's summit, only a few plants can be found that have acclimatized themselves to the harsh conditions and chilly winds.
La Paz Waterfalls
La Paz Waterfalls Gardens is a beautiful park located in the rain-cloud forest in Heredia. It has over 3.5 kilometers of walking trails with five spectacular waterfalls, butterfly observatory, humming bird garden, serpentarium, frog exhibit, Tica house, Trout Lake and many bird watching areas.
Monteverde Cloud Forest
The Monteverde Cloud Forest is created by winds and particular temperature and moisture conditions which combine during the dry season to hold steady cloud cover along the continental divide. We will visit the incredible sky trek/walk overlooking the forest canopy. You will also have the opportunity to go zip-lining.
We will visit Punta Leona Hotel, where a program began in 1996 to try to increase the number of Scarlet Macaws in the area. Artificial nests were built and placed high in trees in an attempt to attract Macaws to lay their eggs on the Punta Leona property, a protected area from poachers. The program was a success and continues to this day. Visitors can walk along the trails and see the transition forest, where rain forest and dry forest species meet. You will also enjoy the pristine white and gold sand beaches, where you can look out into the deep blue waters of the Pacific.
Visit a rain/cloud forest, a highland forest characterized by nearly 100% humidity throughout the year. Clouds are constantly drifting through the valleys and treetops, and tree trunks are almost always covered with mosses, bromeliads, ferns, lichens, and other plants.
Sarapiquí region stretches around the top of Parque Nacional Braulio Carrillo and west to the village of San Miguel, from where Volcán Arenal and the western lowlands are easily accessible by road. Tropical and carpeted with fruit plantations, the area bears more resemblance to the hot and dense Caribbean lowlands. During the day, we are going to enjoy a canopy tour and horseback riding.