With a population of 4.25 million and no army, the democratic nation of Costa Rica is one of the world’s most talked-about destinations. Costa Rica is one of the most biologically diverse countries in the world. This breathtaking destination leaves no shortage of activities to satisfy your appetite for delicious food, thrilling adventure, or unique activities.

Costa Rica’s arts scene infuses every aspect of the country, from the influence of Afro-Caribbean rhythms to pre-Columbian dances to traditionally Spanish music. Theatre, opera, ballet, and classical music are flourishing in the cultural center of San José, home to the National Theatre, National Dance Workshop, and National Symphony Orchestra.

On the country’s Caribbean coast music and dance are an integral part of everyday life, with calypso and reggae, a maypole dance called the cuadrille, and an annual music festival. Best of all, the small size means travelers are only hours away from cloud forests, beaches, and rainforests.

Our Costa Rica Programs

Dance Volunteering in Costa Rica

Use the universal language of movement to inspire and be inspired. Let the beauty of Costa Rica and its people wash over you and infuse your dance practice.

Music Volunteering in Costa Rica

In a country with no military, many government funds support music education. Join a powerful movement to bring music to every young person in Costa Rica, and live with a homestay family in the bustling capital of San Jose.

“As an Arts Educator, the Circus Arts program in Costa Rica provided me with a great professional development opportunity. I was given the once-in-a-lifetime chance to infuse my art with teaching and learning experiences in a beautiful new setting, at once exciting and challenging. My understanding of arts Education has been broadened by my amazing experiences in Costa Rica, and will undoubtedly inform my future arts projects and teaching practice in many ways.”

“Going abroad to Costa Rica through a volunteer music program was the adventure of a lifetime!”

“I had a great time in Costa Rica! Everyone there was super supportive and responsive when we needed help with anything, from lesson plan ideas to weekend travel. The other volunteers were also wonderful and I loved that there were other volunteers at my placements, and I was still able to teach my own classes and have my own experiences.”

“What an incredible experience – volunteering as a dance teacher in Costa Rica is something that you just HAVE to do! Not only is the country beautiful, the people so welcoming, and the food delicious, but the project will be one that you will never, ever forget!”

Costa Rica was such an incredible and beautiful place! I met some awesome people and was fully immersed in the Costa Rican lifestyle. I would definitely go back to the country to do more traveling as there is so much more to see.

“PAA equipped me with everything I needed to know before I departed for Costa Rica. I was confident, empowered, and prepared for my trip. They did an excellent job finding me a placement that was meaningful and catered to my strengths. Thank you!”

From the blog


Costa Rica: My First Solo Trip!

Misha Studenkov spent part of his summer volunteering at a music school with PAA’s Costa Rica Volunteering for High School Students. My music volunteering trip to Costa Rica with PAA was my first time traveling by myself. Going into the…


Above and Beyond

Agnes CHAN-NG-YOK is a piano player from France who participated in our Music Volunteering in Costa Rica program. Currently on a sabbatical year, I wanted to share my passion for music with others, though I’m not a professional musician. PAA…


The Language of Caring

Tamia Beckles was a participant on PAA’s Music Volunteering in Costa Rica program. To be put in touch with Tamia to learn more about her experience and see if this program is a good fit for you, please contact us…

2016 Summer Photo Contest: You at Work

We’ve already announced the winner and runners up of the photo contest, but we’re also sharing some of our favorites in different categories.  This week’s category: You at Work! Here’s the description we gave them: You aren’t just a tourist!…

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