Itinerary – Bambu Indigenous Experience

Starts at only $1,199!

See full pricing details below

Includes:

  • 7 days / 6 nights
  • All transportation
  • 2 nights lodging in San Jose
  • 4 nights lodging in Bambu
  • All meals (except Day One)
  • 2 Awesome Tours
  • 2 Beach excursions
  • Fishing – Bribri style
  • Volunteering in a school, retirement home and cultural center
  • Reference letter / evidence of volunteer service hours
  • 24-hour in-country emergency services
DAY ONE

Fly into San Jose airport. You will be picked up outside by our driver, who will be waiting outside for you, holding a sign with your names on it.

You’ll be brought to the Don Carlos Hotel in the Barrio Amon neighborhood in downtown San Jose, where you’ll be spending your first evening. This historic hotel is located in an area great for exploring, with many restaurant options nearby.

DAY TWO

Enjoy your included breakfast and be ready for your shuttle pick-up at 8:00 am. Your approximately 4-hour drive to the Caribbean side of Costa Rica will stop halfway for a snack and bathroom break. You’ll be brought to the Banana Azul Hotel, where you’ll enjoy a nice lunch and have time to enjoy the beach club and pool while you wait for your next ride.

At 4:00 pm you’ll be picked up by your next driver and be brought to the indigenous town of Bambu, where you’ll be spending the next few days. Simplicity, radical natural beauty, wildlife and friendship are all terms which come to mind when talking about Bambu. You’ll be integrating yourselves into a local indigenous community while participating in a variety of ongoing sustainable and cultural volunteer projects. Bambu, labeled on traditional maps as “Bratsi,” is reached by following the Suretka river, where a very charismatic man named Danilo Gabb fulfilled a dream by building some amazingly beautiful structures using traditional indigenous methods. The real magic, however, is what happens in and around these structures. Danilo will be your host.

At Danilo’s cultural center (“Ditsowowu” in their local Bribri language) and home, we sleep on foam mattresses on the floor. Along with each mattress, you’ll find a mosquito net, sheets, a pillow, and a towel. The center is quite large, so your group will have it’s own space. Though you’ll be “roughing it” a little bit, you’ll be in one of the most beautiful places on Earth, and with some of the most kind and friendly people you’ll ever meet!

Once you get settled in, you’ll sit down to a delicious meal and start getting to know your new “family.”  


DAY THREE

Enjoy your delicious, tropical breakfast this morning at your leisure. Take in the flowers, and enjoy the wide array of colorful birds and fruit trees.

Today you’ll begin getting to know the community, and start your volunteer work. After breakfast you’ll be heading to the local elementary school where we’ll be helping the children with a fun, cultural activity. This will be a great way to break the ice. You’ll see that the kids are thrilled to have visitors, and will be very appreciative of your help.

For lunch, we’ll walk back the 10 minutes to the cultural center. Then we’ll take an hour break, after which we head to the retirement home, which is across the street from the elementary school. Though very simple and basic, you’ll find the retirement home to be beautiful and love-filled. The folks here don’t get many visitors, and they’ll be more than thrilled to see you. Some of us can spend time doing some basic maintenance and cleaning, while others interact directly with the residents. They love to play games, have their hair and nails done, walk and sing and talk.

Once the residents wear you out, you’ll head back up the hill to the cultural center again. Rest, then dinner. At night, some of the neighborhood kids will come by to play games and to get to know you better.  

DAY FOUR

First breakfast, then your tour to the Panama Waterfall! We’ll be taking a trip in a dugout canoe down one river – and up another – until we reach a point where we disembark and hike about 10 minutes into the jungle. Like a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, you reach the gorgeous waterfall and swimming hole. Honestly, just the sheer beauty of the scenery on the boat ride makes this trip well worth it! We’ll take plenty of time to play in the water, relax, and enjoy the gorgeous surroundings.

After we return, we’ll enjoy a nice, hearty lunch and take a rest. Then in the afternoon we go fishing, Bribri-style. It’s a fun activity and neighborhood kids are sure to join us. We’ll just be walking about 10 minutes down to the river.

Dinner will be served about 6 pm, and then we can spend some time with the local kids who will be sure to visit us.

DAY FIVE

Today we’ll volunteer again at the elementary school in the morning for a while before we head out on an adventure to the town of Amubre. This is the largest town on the indigenous reservation. This trip consists of a short bus ride, then a boat ride across the Tulire River, and a bus ride on the other side.

You’ll meet the Bribri shaman, see their culturally important “Casa Conica,” and get a glimpse of how these “modern” indigenous folks live. We’ll have lunch in Amubre upon arrival and make our way back to Bambu by dinner time.

DAY SIX

This morning after breakfast we’ll say goodbye to our new friends in Bambu. Our driver will be picking us up and bring us to the beach town of Puerto Viejo. It’s about a 40-minute drive. You’ll have free time to swim, explore, buy souvenirs, and to relax.

We’ll all meet up at 2:00 pm to make our way back to San Jose. Tonight we’ll sleep once again at the Don Carlos Hotel.

DAY SEVEN – DEPARTURE DAY

Your driver will be picking you up from your hotel in time to get you back to the airport on time for your flight.

*$1,199 Per person double (adult) occupancy. Single supplement – $400. Children between 12 and 15 – $599. Children under 12 – $499.