Thanks for the checking out the blog for this Global Leadership Adventures program!
Here are a few things you can expect:
- We typically receive 2-3 blog posts per week here at GLA Headquarters from our program staff and students, so please don’t be alarmed if you don’t see a blog post daily – that’s totally normal.
- Blog updates sent on weekends may not be posted until Monday.
- Due to many factors, including but not limited to internet accessibility, photos may not always be available to post onto the blog. Sometimes onsite program staff are only able to send text back to Headquarters, where our team updates the blog.
Thank you for your patience and understanding, and we hope you enjoy following along on these unforgettable adventures.
For frequently asked questions about the blogs, please visit our Program Blog FAQ page.
-The Global Leadership Adventures HQ Team
BLOG POST FOR JULY 23
We’re all finally in the land of Pura Vida and our program couldn’t have started a better way. All our students landed in San José today and their luggage is here with them.
We had various arrival times throughout the day; from 10am to 9pm. Students had the opportunity to enjoy the swimming pool at the hotel (after successfully passing the swim test, of course), interact with each other, play cards, sleep, and rest.
We had some late arrivals so we’re looking forward to eating our first meal as a whole team tomorrow morning – and of course we’ll take our first group photo then.
We couldn’t take photos of everyone given the difference in arrival times but we promise we’ll take more photos tomorrow 😉
The team – Marco, Mag, Grae, Jason, and Luismi
BLOG POST FOR JULY 24
This morning we had our first meal together as a family and everyone enjoyed meeting the entire team.
The rain had started to slow down a bit, but the roads to the Caribbean and the access to our Home Base in Parismina are still closed. So we decided to spend one more day here in Alajuela.
We spent the morning at the hotel doing orientation. We played a series of team building games, got silly dancing and running, and overall had a great time.
We also created a community agreement, talked about safety and policies, and started to build the foundation for the program.
In the afternoon we visited an animal rescue center and got to see a lot of local wildlife!
Back at the hotel we got a COVID test and after dinner we watched a movie.
-The GLA Team
BLOG POST FOR JULY 25
Today we started off with breakfast at our hotel in San José – which we had to stay an extra night due to so much rain. We ate pancakes, fruit, hash browns, and rice and beans. It was delicious! Then we packed our bags to go to a new Homebase in Parrita. On our way we stopped to see the largest population of American Crocodiles. When we arrived in Parrita we had burritos for lunch and soon went to a cooking class where we helped to make chorreadas (cassava pancakes, a local delicacy). We headed to the pool to finish up swim tests and just hang out. We then dried off and went to listen to our speaker who was a marine biologist specializing in turtles. We went right down to the beach and we played in the waves. The beach is gorgeous and the water is so warm! For dinner we ate chicken and french fries with brownies for dessert. Now we are on our way to our first night patrol and we hope to see some turtles.
Check in soon!
Audrey, Eva, Emily
BLOG POST FOR JULY 26
Title: the one where we couldn’t stay dry
Today we woke up an and drove to Manuel Antonio park. We took a hike to the beach and saw sloths on the way. At the beach we saw monkeys and lots of crabs up close and personally. We got to spend about an hour floating and swimming in the ocean. Then we traveled back and got ice cream and coconuts on the way. It started to pour rain but that didn’t stop us from being outside. Mau, and environmental conservationist came and thought us how to dig up, move, and plant coconut trees. We also uprooted and planted almond sapplings to help combat erosion. We planted over 100 trees despite the weather. All in all it was a great day and we’re excited for tomorrow.
Celina, Margaret, Audra, Penelope, Sammi
BLOG POST FOR JULY 27
Title: Coast to coast
Today we traveled from the Pacific coast to the Atlantic coast in Parismina. We started our day off with delicious pancakes and hashbrowns before hitting the road for our 9hr journey. During the ride, in a technology-free environment, we’ve made friendship bracelets, read books, and bonded while admiring the beautiful landscape. We drove from places ranging from mountains to the city. We’ve also made a few stops where we’ve discovered authentic Costa Rican delicacies. We also had the chance to purchase souvenirs to remind us of our adventures. For the final leg of the journey, we’ve experienced a safari-like river boat ride, witnessing spider monkeys, tropical birds, and even a baby crocodile. This took us to our final Homebase: Green Gold Ecolodge. Before going on our night patrol we ate dinner and admired the garden, the beach and the abundance of colorful hammocks.
Yiwen, Amanda, Mallory, Cat, Skye, Grayson
BLOG POST FOR JULY 28
Title: the adventure continues
Hola from our eco lodge in Parismina. It was our first full day here and we didn’t waste a minute. We started with an early morning yoga session to stretch and wake up with the sun, followed by a nutritious breakfast. After we filled our stomachs, we embarked on a farm tour led by our host Jason and his dog, Lacy.
Farm tour? Oops, we meant survival course! We learned life changing skills such as using lemon grass to repel mosquitoes, collecting plantains and lemons, opening coconuts, eating termites, and befriending Jim, the cayman (small croc).
Later in the day we relaxed and hung out, including hammocking, playing games, and making friendship bracelets. After this break we were well rested for our dance class / party led by Maya. To cool off we took a trip to the beach, a mere two minute walk from our lodge. We then picked up 6 large bags worth of garbage that had accumulated on the sand. We ate dinner and prepared for night patrol, dressed in all black.
Fingers crossed for a turtle sighting tonight and sending love from Costa Rica.
Caroline, Abbi, Madison, and Julia
BLOG POST FOR JULY 29
Title: Parismina Adventura
After a long night of thunder and rain, we woke up to the sounds of cows, monkeys, and chirping birds. With the sun shining, we ate eggs, toast, fresh fruit, and a rice-bean combo.
Our first activity was an insightful boat tour along the Costa Rican canals. Spider monkeys, crocodiles, herons, and geckos all greeted us along the banks. We arrived at the Parismina port and started our tour of the town. Village dogs greeted us while we learned about the town of Parismina. Local townspeople made us refreshing smoothies on this hot, humid day. Flavors ranged from mango, pineapple, soursop, and guava. Then, we made our way to the turtle hatchery: ASTOP, where we had delicious chicken and bean burgers. After our tummies were full, we supported local artists at the arts and crafts fair where we bought necklaces, bracelets, and gifts for our families. We got a closer look at the hatchery and learned they hatch over 7000 eggs there!
We had a quick boat ride back to Homebase, where we saw a baby sloth in the almond trees. Siesta time and beach time occurred until dinner where we had a home favorite: Mac and cheese. Our friend Malia turned 18 today so we celebrated with cake and sang happy birthday in different languages we knew. Now we’re getting ready for our last night patrol! Wish us luck!
Mia, Andrea, Mahaila, Brayden, Karolina
BLOG POST FOR JULY 30
Title: rafting adventure
We started off the morning with COVID testing and arepas, which is like fried dough. Testing was very thorough – some people cried. We then got ready bright and early for an exciting day of rafting. We had a lengthy bus ride and stopped at a local grocery store to get snacks. The flooding moved us to a new river, an adventure for all involved. Once we got to the river, we got all suited up in helmets and life jackets. Before we took off on the water, we got the total rundown on how to paddle and commands they used.
We had an exciting two and a half hours with people falling in and out of the boat. Everyone had fun and after we finished we stopped at a local house and enjoyed lunch with fresh fruit. We drove back to Homebase and had free time to hang out with friends before dinner. We ate empanadas and pickled stuff. We finished off the day with our “be the change” leadership activity and went to bed.
Emma, Jemima, Malia, Lily, Xam
BLOG POST FOR JULY 31
Our adventures in Costa Rica have sadly come to an end. But our last day here couldn’t have been better. We left our Homebase early in the morning on our usual boat ride and then drove for a couple of hours to our Zipline location. After gearing up we embarked on a beautiful journey of adrenaline through the rainforest. Everyone faced their fears and had a great time.
After lunch we continued our drive to San José. At dinner we celebrated Skye’s birthday with cake and lots of singing. After that we had a very emotional closing ceremony which got a few of us in tears. We all said goodbye to each other and went to bed.