San Miguel de Sarapiquí is a tiny rainforest town in the northern part of the Sarapiquí Valley and is truly a snapshot of the vibrant culture and plentiful plant and animal life that make Costa Rica a top travel destination for people across the world. What this little town of less than 3,000 residents lacks in size, it more than makes up for in rich biodiversity. It sits 1,900 feet above sea level, has an average year-round temperature in the 80s, and an abundance of rainfall—these conditions keep the landscape green and full of birds and wildlife. In your free time, explore the Poas Volcano, river raft on the Rio de Sarapiqui, swim in waterfalls, or tour local coffee farms.
In just 90 minutes from the airport to San Miguel, you’ll pass over the Cordillera Central volcanic mountain range and alongside La Paz waterfall. This location is perfect for volunteers who want to be off the tourist grid while getting to know the locals and explore the natural beauty of Costa Rica.
If you’ve ever wanted to explore this tropical paradise, here is your opportunity to do so while also making a difference.
Guatemala is one of the most bio-diverse and historically significant regions of Central America. We have many volunteer programs in this country, all located near Quetzaltenango (also known as Xela) which sits low in a valley surrounded by towering volcanoes. Xela is Guatemala’s educational center, boasting five universities and numerous language schools. This location has a mild climate, with dry, clear days in the winter and a rainy season through the summer months. Temperatures are usually in the low-mid 70s year round, which is fitting for most all activities.
When not volunteering, you can explore nearby volcanoes, learn how to make homemade Guatemalan chocolate, take a day trip to the beach, or enjoy the local hot springs. With an extended stay, you can even trek to Central America’s highest point or to Lago Atitlan.
This magical land of Mayan ruins and rich, eye-opening cultures and experiences is the perfect setting for international volunteering and Central American exploring.
¡Hola volunteers! There is a project in Guatemala waiting for you.
There is plenty to see and do in Kenya from its pristine beaches and savannah plateaus to the highlands and over to the Great Rift Valley. This well-known wildlife safari destination is now gaining popularity for many other attractions including snorkeling, hiking and trekking on Mount Kenya, and even exploring the urban jungle of Nairobi. This bustling, intense capital is also the only city in the world with a natural national park.
Kenya is directly on the equator on Africa’s eastern coast. Its warm climate, lifestyle, and unique landscapes make this a fascinating destination for volunteers who choose to explore the country on their time off. Friendly, optimistic people are sure to put a smile on your face as you give your hardworking hands and loving heart to this region on your international volunteer project.
If you’re looking for a culturally new, exciting, and impactful experience while volunteering abroad, check out our projects in Kenya.
Nepal is a majestic and inspiring country high in the Himalayas between the South and East Asian landmasses. This country’s 20,000-feet-plus peaks and ancient Hindu and Buddhist spiritual traditions create an unforgettable setting for your international volunteer experience with Utopia Volunteers. Our volunteer projects are in the country’s capital city of Kathmandu, which has a warm temperate climate year-round—very different from the wide-ranging tropical and near-arctic climates found elsewhere in the country.
In your free time, you may choose to explore the old temple squares in Kathmandu or stroll through ancient markets filled with spices and singing bowls. A few adventure activities in the country include soaring from a paraglider in Sarangkot over Pokhara and the enchanting Fewa Lake far below, or trekking with guides and porters across glaciers to one of Nepal’s mountain Base Camps. If you’re interested in volunteering with Earthquake Relief and Rebuilding efforts as well, we can recommend programs for before or after your Utopia Volunteers project period.
The Nepali people are warm and welcoming, sure to greet you with a “Namaste” and a smile. Explore our projects in Kathmandu and reach out with any questions you have about making a lasting impact here.
South Africa — a land full of amazing and diverse experiences — is one of the world’s top volunteer and tourism destinations. From Table Mountain to God’s Window, South Africa’s scenic wonders are legendary. Situated at the tip of the African continent and cradled by two oceans, the mountains, forests, coasts, and deserts will catch your eye and lift your spirit.
When you’re not working at your volunteer post, a temperate climate full of sunny days and clear blue skies is the perfect atmosphere for a variety of activities like hiking, birding, mountaineering, water sports, or a visit to one of the many national parks where you’re sure to encounter elephants, lions, buffalos, rhinos, leopards, and other exciting, exotic animals. Known as the rainbow nation, South Africa celebrates eleven official languages and many diverse, vibrant cultures.
The variety of activities and abundant natural beauty and vibrant culture have made it the once-in-a-lifetime destination for many volunteers. South Africa is waiting for you — what are you waiting for?
Uganda is known as the Pearl of Africa and is nestled between the East African savannas and West African jungles. Its location makes it the ideal home for over half of the world’s remaining forest gorilla population and half of Africa’s bird species, in addition to housing lions, hippos, chimpanzees, and many other animal groups. This country is also culturally rich and ethnically diverse — more than 30 languages are spoken by Uganda’s many indigenous groups, and each region boasts its own eclectic mix of food, music, art, and traditional ceremonies.
You’ll have many options for adventuring in your downtime if you choose to volunteer with projects in Uganda. The near-perfect weather throughout the year is perfect for river rafting on the Nile, tracking forest primates in the jungles, going on a savannah safari, or spending time learning and exploring the rich cultural traditions of this area.
If experiencing these rich gems of nature and culture appeals to you, volunteer with us on one of our projects in this beautiful, east African nation.
Global Citizen Artist
Utopia Foundation and Utopia Volunteers believes in the power of art to heal and unite individuals and communities. Practicing art—whether that is music, dance, fine arts, spoken word, creating writing, or poetry—is integral to creating educated and peace-building citizens. To encourage both cross-cultural understanding and the practice of art within communities, we are in the process of developing a program through Utopia Volunteers to send artists overseas to learn and collaborate with artists in local communities.
We are pleased to announce the activation of our first program in this series, Global Artist Mural Project “Paint Up Kamammas” in South Africa. Trips begin February of 2016!