To start the day, the group drove to Playa Grande, experiencing the scenic mountains and ocean views from different parts of Costa Rica. The excitement began early as we stopped the bus to view a family of monkeys swinging amongst the trees on our route to our upcoming adventure. Once arriving at the beach, the group split and took turns taking surfing lessons from natives and simply enjoying the beach with their group members. Many first-time surfers were very successful and eventually got the hang of riding waves into the shore by themselves. As the waves grew we took a break from the beach and got lunch at Rip Jack Inn, as well as enjoying a quick swim and relaxing time in the hammocks.

Following lunch, the group traveled to the Leatherback Turtle Conservation site to learn about the endangered species and help out the community. To help the protection of the leatherback turtles, our group traveled along the beach picking up all trash we could find—including but not limited to water bottles, straws, and plastic bags. The surrounding community noticed our act to help clean up the environment, and many people joined us in picking up trash they found along the beach. It was inspiring to see the community directly affected by the actions we are making towards bettering their beaches.

After returning to Playa Hermosa, the group ended the night by swimming while watching the sun set and eating a delicious family style meal at a local restaurant. We are looking forward to snorkeling tomorrow and departing to the village, Cuaji, which will be our home for the following nine days.

Check out some of photos from our trip!