Costa Rica: Geotourism & International Food and Culture

*Please note:  The next time this program will run is Spring/Summer 2023. Details below are subject to change.


¡Pura Vida!  Join us on an adventure in the tourism capital of Central America – experience not only rainforest hikes, white-water rafting, and zip lining; but also the Tico Pura Vida culture through experiences like chocolate making and Latin American dance classes.  Explore national parks and natural areas, stay in eco-lodges, Costa Rican University dorms, and even spend a night with a Costa Rican family.

Check out the  PHOTO GALLERY or this VIDEO  (made my Sarah Sebastian, 2019)


· Engage in zip lining and white water rafting activities to gain a better understanding of Adventure Tourism

· Visit National Parks and Preserves to facilitate an understanding of Nature Tourism and wildlife conservation

· Explore chocolate farms on horseback, tour the world’s only Starbucks coffee plantation, visit a sugar and banana plantation to help facilitate your learning about Costa Rican food culture.

Email List For more information or to hear about upcoming info sessions, sign up on our email list!

Image 1 of 8 Students swim in the rain at sunset.
2.0 GPA Required
English Language Requirement

Program Dates and Application Deadline

Spring/Summer 2023

Program Dates: May 4, 2023 - May 26, 2023
Application Deadline: February 1, 2023

(4 weeks)



Costa Rica

Students will register for a total of 6 credits:

HTM 175: International Food and Culture (3 credits) AND

*HTM 368: Geotourism (3 credits) OR

HTM 399: Independent Study

Fulfills General Education Global Perspectives requirement. 
*Fulfills a course in General Education Issues: Sustainability. Reflection required

Language of Instruction: English



Program participants will live in on-campus housing at EARTH University, in a variety of eco-lodges, and in homestays.

Cost and Scholarships

Costa Rica


Program Fee: $7,267


  • Round-trip airfare
  • Accommodation
  • Meals
  • Field trips and entrance fees
  • All ground transportation

Other Expenses

  • Tuition ($3,690)
  • Passport ($200)
  • Personal expenses ($400)
  • ISIC card - optional ($28)

TOTAL PROJECTED COST (Program Fee + Other Expenses): $11,557


Students may fund study abroad by using financial aid, scholarships, grants and personal funds. A study abroad adviser can help you create a funding plan.

FACULTY-LED PROGRAM GRANT (Up to $1,500):  All degree-seeking students who apply to their faculty-led program by the priority deadline are automatically considered for a grant of up to $1,500 from the Padnos International Center. Students must have a current FAFSA on file to be eligible. No application required.

James F. and Virginia L. Goode Global Programs Scholarship: The purpose of the scholarship is to reduce the financial pressure on students and their families and make a Grand Valley education accessible to students from all backgrounds. This need-based scholarship will ensure that financial need does not become a barrier to intellectual and personal growth for students planning to study abroad. MyScholarships:

Visit for more information on these and other grants/scholarships. 


To contact the Financial Aid office, email [email protected] with “Study Abroad” in the Subject line. Include your G Number and Total Projected Cost of the program in the e-mail. 

Non-GVSU Students: Non-GVSU students admitted for study abroad are not eligible for Financial Aid from GVSU. Check with your home school’s study abroad and financial aid offices for details on applying for financial aid from your home school toward study abroad program costs. 

Financial Aid FAQs


2.0 GPA required.

GVSU is happy to extend this opportunity to NonGVSU Students.

Already Applied

CDC Report

CDC works 24/7 to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the U.S. Whether diseases start at home or abroad, are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease and supports communities and citizens to do the same.

Checkout CDC Report For Costa Rica

US State Department Information

The first step to an international trip is to read our Traveler’s Checklist to find out things to consider before you go. Pay special attention to our safety and security information and assess for yourself the risk of traveling to a particular country or region.  Some U.S. citizens with special considerations – such as students, women, and LGBTI travelers – may face additional challenges when abroad.  If you do decide to travel, make a plan for what to do if something goes wrong overseas. 

Checkout US State Department Information For Costa Rica



Contact Information

Spring/Summer 2023
Kathleen Bailey
Program Director
Gail Zemmol
Program Director

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