Optional tours and field studies are subject to change. Please contact us for more information.
USAC encourages every student to participate in these tours or field studies; however, they are optional and have an additional fee. Destinations may change at the discretion of the Resident Director.
The following are possible destinations, view term calendars for specifics.
The Tour typically begins with a trip by bus to the Sierpe River for a boat ride to Drake Bay Wilderness Resort. Legend states that Sir Frances Drake buried a treasure somewhere along this coast in the 1570s. We will explore the pristine environment surrounding Bahía Drake, which includes a river, beaches, mangrove swamps, and amazing wildlife. Hikes, snorkeling, and a jungle river trip are planned, along with a trek through Corcovado National Park, Costa Rica’s Little Amazon. You will also spend a free day at the beach, where you may choose to participate in activities such as horseback riding, scuba diving, and snorkeling. The fee includes bus transportation, boat ride, guide, breakfast, dinner, lodging, and entrance fees to parks.
We will visit Tortuguero and explore its natural network of scenic and navigable waterways. This is one of the most exotic and beautiful regions of Costa Rica, as well as the most important green sea turtle breeding grounds in all of the Caribbean. We will head to Sixaola on the Costa Rica/Panama border and take a boat ride to Isla Colón—Bocas del Toro, Panamá. Bocas del Toro is rich and diverse in natural resources. We will visit the first National Marine Park and tour Zapatilla Key and Hospital Point where you can enjoy sunny islands, beautiful beaches, coral reefs in crystal clear water, and mangrove islets in lake-like scenery. This fee includes bus transportation, boat ride, guide, breakfast, lunch, dinner, room, and entrance fees to parks.
This overnight trip includes a walk through the cloud forest of Reserva Biologica de Monteverde and a visit to Selvatura Adventures Park for a canopy tour that covers 15 cable lines and 18 platforms for a unique exploration of the Monteverde Cloud Forest.
We will head to Paso Canoas on the Costa Rica and Panama border, then continue to the city of Boquete and explore this beautiful, natural region. There we will zip line, cross hanging bridges and take a coffee tour. We will then continue to Panama City, where we will do a city tour of Casco Antiguo, the famous Panama Canal, and take a boat to Taboga Island, a beautiful beach on the Pacific coast. We will go from the Pacific coast to the Caribbean by train to explore Portobelo Beach, a beautiful Caribbean beach. We will head back to Costa Rica to spend two days at the Ballena Beach National Park, where we will take a boat ride for whale sightseeing and snorkeling. The fees includes bus transportation, boat rides, guides, room and board, and entrance fees to parks.