Costa Rica Animal Rescue Center

The Costa Rica Animal Rescue Center is a non-profit organization that gives animals a second chance at life. Our dedicated staff and selfless volunteers work tirelessly to help these animals heal, keep them safe, rehabilitate them, and eventually re-release them into their natural habitat in the Costa Rican rainforest.

  • Who Can Volunteer?

    • We welcome all who are interested! You should come ready to pitch in whenever necessary, and be willing live in basic conditions. There is no maximum age.

  • Minimum stay

    • The minimum time to volunteer with us is one week; we feel it takes at least this amount of time to learn how to properly be able to care for the animals and receive the full experience. However, we have found that volunteers who stay for two weeks or more tend to have the best experiences with us.

  • Arranging your trip

    • Once you have made your travel arrangements, please send us your flight information. If we do not receive your flight/arrival information we will assume you are not coming. We provide airport pick up and drop off with our trusted drivers, if you prefer to take a cab or other arrangements we are not held responsible for any travel misfortune. Airport pick up is $35 / Airport drop off is $35. After hour charges from 8pm to 8am are $10 extra, any additional passenger is $10 dollars each.

    • Once you arrived call Bernal at (‪506)-8892-6771‬, we are 30 minutes away from the airport. Please reconfirm your travel plans with us a couple of days before your departure. If you are arriving by other means than the airport, please contact us and we will make arrangements.

  • What Are the Conditions Like?

  • Check out our facilities

  • Weather forecast

    • Costa Rica has a warm and humid environment, but our Center is quite shaded, making the working conditions fairly comfortable.

    • Rainy season:

    • Dry season:

  • We have a refrigerator available for our volunteers for personal snacks.

  • There is a washing machine and clothesline available to clean your clothing.

  • At the center we have electricity, flush-able toilets, showers, and WiFi. We recommend volunteers to bring a headlamp to get around at night, and to also bring hiking boots or tennis shoes.

  • The dorm rooms for our volunteers have 6-12 beds per room, and we provide sheets and mosquito netting (blankets are not included), but we recommend to bring a new mosquito net and warm clothes to sleep in, or a blanket as it can be a little cold at night. Also, you need to provide your own towel for showering and/or swimming

  • We have a pool, common area, and hammocks for relaxing during downtime.

  • Food

    • Our lovely cooks and volunteers prepare a variety of dishes for our communal meals, from traditional Costa Rican food to a mix of international dishes. There is a vegetarian option at every meal. If you have specific dietary needs, please inform us ahead of time and we will do our best to accommodate your needs.


  • Volunteer Activities

    • Your daily tasks are organized by our wonderful Volunteer Coordinator and follow a certain schedule. Our volunteers help out with all aspects of the Center.

1 week stay

  • Cleaning animal enclosures

  • Cleaning the common areas

  • General tidying of the Center (sweeping pathways, etc)

  • Other general tasks

  • We rotate through different tasks to ensure everyone has a chance to work on all the aspects of the Center.

2 - 3 weeks stay

4 or more weeks stay

  • Veterinarian team


  • $45/day from each volunteer to cover the costs of your room and three meals per day. This money also helps sustain the center and care for all the animals. There is no government funding, so we rely 100% on donations and volunteer stays.

Things to do nearby:

We are a short drive from the San Jose bus terminal and airport. San Jose’s bus terminal is a major hub, so you can visit many of Costa Rica’s beautiful locations such as Monteverde, the Arenal Volcano, the Caribbean and Pacific Coasts, and the many stunning national parks.

  • Volunteers often want to take day and overnight trips to visit locations around Costa Rica while they volunteer with us. We encourage this, but ask that you coordinate with us once you are here so we can ensure the Center’s work requirements continue to be met while you travel.

  • Turrucares is a 20 minute bus ride from the Center (50 cents), where you can find a modest-sized grocery store, pizza restaurant, bank, and internet.

You can pay cash in USA dollars, debit card, or a credit card. Everywhere in Costa Rica you can pay in USA currency but you get the change in local currency. Make sure you get a receipt and sign a contract when you pay.

Travel blog: one volunteers experience

We want to hear from you…. please fill out survey after your stay with us