Volunteer in Sea Turtle Conservation

Help us protect the sea turtles! These majestic creatures play a key role in ocean ecosystems and their extinction would be a tragedy.

Maximo Nivel’s Sea Turtle Conservation programs are available in Costa Rica and Guatemala. Turtle Conservation projects are located on both the both Caribbean and Pacific coasts.

What will you do as a Sea Turtle Conservation Volunteer?

Your turtle conservation program begins with 2 days in San Jose, Costa Rica or Antigua, Guatemala where you go through orientation and prepare for your project. Once you arrive at the turtle project, you provide support to local biologists and researchers who are involved in managing the turtle nesting grounds. You take part in nightly beach patrols, tagging turtles, relocating nests into hatcheries, counting eggs and turtles, beach cleanup efforts, and other support activities such as community outreach programs.

CountriesCosta Rica, Guatemala
Program DurationMinimum 2 weeks
Work Schedule5-6 hours/day Monday-Saturday; Working hours are split into shifts and you should be prepared for both late night and day time shifts
Volunteer Requirements– At least 17 years of age
– Flexible; Willing to do various tasks based on season and project needs
– Healthy and physically prepared to work and live in a remote area with very few amenities.
– Hard working, ready to do anything!
– Responsible and safety minded
– Spanish language skills are not required
– Alcohol is strictly prohibited at conservation sites
Apply Now!

Need Help? Talk to our Programs Advisors today!

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What our Turtle Conservation Volunteers are saying…

“I had an amazing time conserving turtles in Ostional! The work that you do is much needed as well as attracting attention and tourism, beneficial to the local surrounding community. It was a very rural project, situated on the coast and staying in dorm style accommodation but I would recommend the digital detox to anybody! The staff at Maximo and at the project are incredibly welcoming and I have made friends and connections for life on this project!”
“This was a really amazing volunteer experience. It was cool being able to work so closely with the turtles and had many rewarding moments such as having the opportunity to assist deformed turtles in digging their nests. The accommodations were basic but suitable and the food and company was great! My only complaint is that we didn’t get to help much with data analyzation.”
“A holiday with a real purpose, that’s what I was looking for, for me and my 2 teen sons. After endless online research, we zoomed in on Maximo Nivel’s Turtle Conservation programme in Costa Rica. We all love wildlife, especially marine life (having worked for WWF-UK For 15years) and my boys were passionate about surfing and integrating with the local community, especially school kids. Little did we know, this project was going to tick all our boxes and in more ways than we ever imagined! Upon arrival in early July and the most thorough, helpful and reassuring orientation with Maximo Nivel in San Jose and 2 nights spent with a wonderful host family, with utterly delicious food, we were bussed out to Junquillal on the northern Pacific coast of the Guanacaste region of the Nicoya peninsula. It took a couple of days to settle in, to feel the rhythm of each day and the jobs required of us, but each day was brand new with the purpose that we craved. Jobs included tree planting to provide shade on the beach for turtle nesting, supervising and cleaning the hatchery to ensure it was always ready to receive new egg batches or release fresh hatchlings but best of all was night patrol (3hr shifts, with a guide, on a rota basis) patrolling the beach to find turtles laying their eggs. Our incredible guides expertly showed us how to locate the light bulb shape nests of the Olive Ridley turtle (most commonly found at this time of year). Finding over 100 eggs and carefully relocating them to the hatchery to protect them from predators and poachers whilst they matured was a very moving and unforgettable experience. Holding those 100 potential life forms in my arms felt like a huge responsibility. Upon finishing the project we had some time to explore more of Costa Rica’s gems which of course were fantastic but nothing quite stripped us back and gave us that deep sense of purpose that the project gave us. We loved not feeling like a tourist, but an essential cog in the chain and I will never look back with anything but respect and an overwhelming feeling of success! Thank you Maximo for having such a positive effect on 3 people’s lives, forever.”
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