Monteverde — a kaleidoscope of biodiversity from flora to fauna thrives in its cloud forests. The Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserves boasts 26,000 acres, 70,000 visitors a year, and one of the seven natural wonders of Costa Rica. The outdoors will be your classroom here by exploring the environment and learning about how the communities balance sustainability and tourism. Plus, you’ll have opportunities to intern or volunteer here along with your studies, which will be a shining jewel on your resume. Study abroad in Monteverde to experience an educational adventure every day!
Popular Ways to Study in Monteverde
The majority of the study abroad programs in Monteverde involve hands-on learning. You could participate in sea turtle conservation, work at wildlife rescue centers, educate and empower the local community, and more. Bonus: You can also take español classes as part of your studies and practice it on a daily basis!
Popular subjects to study. Many of the programs available in Monteverde focus on biological research, conservation, and agriculture. However, if you’re interested in Spanish, culture, design, or other liberal arts courses, you’re also looking in the right place! No matter what you decide, you’ll find courses that align with your interests and challenge you to help the locals on a personable basis.
Short term and summer programs vs. long term programs (semester, trimester, year-long). You could choose to participate in short-term programs while studying in Monteverde, such as during the May term or summer, or through long-term programs during the fall, spring, or for a full academic year. Shorter programs are great for earning extra credits in a short amount of time. However, you’ll get the most out of your colones with a longer program because you’ll learn more about the country and become more fluent in Spanish.
Attending universities vs. other program types. When looking into study abroad Monteverde programs, you’ll notice that you can take courses through your own university, universities in Monteverde, or through a third-party program provider. Talk to your academic advisor to help you decide which program will fulfill your credit requirements. You’ll want to make sure that the credits will transfer if you decide to go through a program outside your university.
Student Life in Monteverde
Life in Monteverde is exciting and adventurous! The biggest attraction in Monteverde is the Cloud Forest Reserve, where animal enthusiasts will rejoice — you might just spot the famous quetzal or golden toad here! You could also cross suspension bridges, zip line the canopies, bungee jump, ride horses, take a coffee tour, or explore bat caves on night walks. Plus, you could visit butterfly gardens or serpentariums (if you dare). Once you’ve gotten your fill of thrills, you could travel south to Punta Arenas to lounge on the glittering beaches.
After a long day, you can rest your head in a cozy setting with a host family. Most of the programs also offer homestay accommodations, which is the best way to learn about life in Monteverde from the locals, get the best tips on places to see and things to do, save money in the long run, try out local foods, and practice your Spanish in a comfortable environment.
GoAbroad Insider Tips
While Costa Rica is more affordable in the United States, especially with health care, it’s best to eat like a local while studying in Monteverde. Be sure to visit open-air farmers’ markets to buy all your grocery needs from meats to vegetables, where $15 per person can fill your fridge for a week. Take advantage of student discounts in the area and take the public buses. Program fees vary based on duration, tuition, and more, but you can budget, save, fundraise, or apply for scholarships to help cover the costs.
The weather in Monteverde includes a rainy season from May to December and a dry season from December to May. However, it can rain any day throughout the year, so bring a waterproof jacket, and some days are more humid and windy than others. The average temperature ranges from the 60s-80s, so it’s best to wear layers, and make sure you bring pants and sweaters for the chilly nights. Also, bring a good pair of closed-toe hiking shoes.
From musing over your studies with classmates in the Tree House Cafe to exploring hidden paths in the cloud forest, you’re on tico time in Monteverde! The academic life involving dancing, music, soccer games, and eating delicious cocina tipica food will be the time of your life. You’ll discover new things every day in one of the greenest countries on Earth when you study abroad in Monteverde.
Let’s keep this party going! Read our comprehensive guide on studying in Costa Rica.