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Central America Ethical Adventure Trail - 10 week incorporating a placement

  • In Brief
  • The Project
  • What to Expect
  • Reviews
  • Gallery
  • Extras
  • Dates & Costs
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How To Apply

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Find out more about Mexico

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Frontier Group Project

Working in collaboration with institutions and NGOs with the country, projects are research-based, creating sustainable and biodiverse programmes.

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Combine exciting adventure travel with a project placement and experience the best of Central America on an unforgettable adventure trip with Frontier through Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Costa Rica. Explore the legendary Mayan ruins set in dense rainforests and swim in azure waters off white sand beaches. Climb to the rim of active volcanoes, learn how local coffee is made, ride horseback down ancient mountain trails, snorkel and dive some of the world's best dive sites, zip-line through the canopies of lush jungles, and dance the night away in the best salsa clubs.

On an incredible journey of discovery through the countries of Latin America you will also have the chance to contribute to both the local community and environmental conservation, spending time helping at a wonderful school in Honduras as well as working on the Frontier Big Cats, Turtles and Primate Conservation project.  Travelling to our remote coastal forest camp in Costa Rica, you'll participate (in season) in hands-on turtle conservation, collecting eggs and patrolling beaches. Out of season, you'll survey monkeys and other exotic jungle animals, trekking into the rainforest and tracking along the beach. 

What is so fantastic about this journey is that whilst travelling you will benefit from the leadership of a young, friendly, fun but also sensible and well-travelled guide who will take care of all the stress and organisation on the trip, whether it be recovering lost luggage, arranging bus tickets, booking hostels or extra activities, dealing with emergencies or even knowing the best places to go for a great night out! If you want to experience the beauty and adventure of Central America, travelling along with a young and friendly group of companions, without the hassle, then joining this Frontier Ethical Adventure Trail is the perfect solution!     


• A unique view of this fascinating part of the world
• Discover local cultures and delicacies
• Immerse yourself in culture as you assist at a local community school
• Learn about the wildlife of this fascinating biodiversity hotspot
• Earn your BTEC (at an additional cost)

Airport Pickup Camping Beach Community Emergency Ground Transport Hotel Homestay Research Mountainous PADI Terrestrial Qualification Trekking Wildlife Wildlife Rainforest Coastal Snorkelling Encounter SomeMeals
Location Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Costa Rica
Activities You could be:
Climbing volcanoes
Exploring ancient ruins
Horseback riding
Taking part in hiking tours
Getting involved in watersports including snorkelling, diving, kayaking, swimming in caves, tubing around rivers, boat tours
Visiting traditional Mayan communities
Discover and learn about old beautiful architecture
Eating street food and enjoying delicious fresh juices
Conservation work in Costa Rica
Assisting in a local school in Honduras
Transport Airport pick-up & drop-off (subject to flight dates) and local transport between locations
Accommodation Varies - May include hostels, host families, camping and more!

Before you go Pre-departure support
Travel & medical advice & documentation
Equipment advice
Discounted medical kit
Free Frontier t-shirt
In-country Welcome dinner, departure dinner, street food in Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua (3 meals a day on the placement in Cost Rica)
All Accommodation
Airport pick-up & drop-off (subject to flight dates)
Ground transfers & internal travel
Local orientation and training
In-country emergency support
24-hour international HQ backup



Mexico City: The adventure begins with a whirlwind tour of this leviathan of a city. You'll delve into a history as rich and colourful as any in the world, typified today in magnificent monuments such as the zócalo, the western hemisphere's largest cathedral, the Catedral Metropolitana, the museum of anthropology and, of course, the famous murals of Diego Rivera. You will have the opportunity to get to know the rest of your group. Group sizes range from 2- 12 participants.
San Cristobal: Explore the hills of the legendary Zapatista uprising and trawl markets for crafts inspired by the spirit of revolution. You'll discover how one small group of dedicated villagers brought the whole world's attention to the plight of indigenous Mexicans.
Palenque: Explore local villages in the jungle near to Palenque City where you can visit Palenque Mayan ruins surrounded by monkeys. Explore the dense jungle and cool off in the clear waterfalls at Agua Azul and Misol-Ha.


Tikal: Watch the sun rise over Central America's most famous ruins which have towered over the jungle for thousands of years and learn about the ancient Mayan empire from an experienced local guide.
San Pedro La Laguna: Take a boat tour to explore a local Mayan community, rent kayaks to soak up the sun at this huge and magical lake and hike around the area before relaxing in the hot springs.
Antigua: Sip organic coffee at a roadside café as you take in the magnificence of this ancient UNESCO heritage city. Stand at the edge of Pacaya, Central America's most active volcano. Walk to the top of the highlands to appreciate the impressive view of the city surrounded by volcanos, learn about the colonial architecture and taste the delicious food at the local market.



Copán: Explore mighty Mayan ruins by day and rest your weary bones in warm thermal pools in the evening, before you set out to dance the night away in a hilltop disco. Be enchanted by the beauty of the area while horse riding with a local farmer and enjoy zip-lining on a canopy tour!
Teaching in a local school: Based in a colourful and friendly nearby town outside of San Pedro Sula surrounded by green mountains and tropical cloud forest, you will help out at a local school which aims to help the most disadvantaged children. You may be assisting in classes, leading your own, helping with after school activities and classes, or other duties around the school and within the community where many families appreciate the help and enthusiasm from volunteers. There may also be opportunity to venture into the nearby cloud forests or explore the traditional beach communities of the Caribbean coast at the weekend.
Útila: Central America's diving paradise is an island built solely around exploring the underwater world and is an ideal place to do your PADI dive training (extra costs apply). You'll also go on a day trip to a perfect deserted island, finishing the day with a barbecue on the beach.


León: The echoes of revolution still hang in the air of this exciting city, where you can stroll cobblestone streets amidst murals depicting the heroes of the revolution. To learn more you can visit fascinating museums and art galleries with works found nowhere else on Earth. You can also go volcano-boarding, which is an adrenaline-pumping rollercoaster-ride down soft ash.
Granada: A magnificent colonial town, where tree-lined streets host musicians and entertainers of all sorts is the perfect jump-off point for your visit to the volcanic islands of Ometepe, situated in the middle of the luscious Lake Nicaragua.
San Juan del Sur: A peaceful and beautiful town set in a picturesque cove, where surfing is a way of life.


Whilst on the placement part of the trail in Costa Rica, you will take part in two projects over the four weeks: two weeks teaching (COS) and two weeks on our Big Cats, Primates and Turtle Conservation Project (COS). This will allow you to engage in hands on experience with conservation and community projects and take part in a wide range of activities that both locations have to offer.
Costa Rica Teaching (COS): During this placement you will be working in a local school offering support to children learning English and supporting them with other aspects of their lives and education. Frontier volunteers work with a local school in Puerto Jimenez which is always in need of assistance from volunteers. This project has recently taken off and the school staff are extremely keen to develop their English teaching curriculum to increase the positive impact of language education on the community of the region. You will benefit in terms of your personal and professional experience and will be encouraged to formulate ideas and develop your teaching skills and techniques. Working with the local teachers you will be working one on one or with small groups, focusing on those children who are behind in their education. You may be asked to help with a variety of essential subjects such as basic maths, English, reading, and you may also be asked to plan your own lessons for your small group. Your level of involvement will obviously depend on the length of your stay as well as your existing skills and qualifications.
Costa Rica Big Cats, Primates and Turtle Project (CBP): Depending on the season, join our fight to save critically-endangered sea turtles, or trek through remote rainforest in search of spider monkeys and macaques. You'll spend a month with other eco-warriors on our conservation camp, helping to change the world under the guidance of field experts.


You will be greeted at Mexico City Airport by your trail leader and escorted by bus to a local hostel where you will spend your first night. If you are arriving before the project start date you will meet at an agreed rendezvous point.
You will have a day in Mexico City to get a taste of the Latin American spirit to come. From there you will soon set off to the next destination on your exciting adventure, so be prepared to throw yourself into the experience once you arrive!


During the trail you will stay in basic but of course comfortable accommodation such as hostels, sleeping in mixed sex communal dorms or shared rooms, or homestays.

Once on the remote Frontier conservation camp on the peninsula your accommodation will vary from tents, to hammocks under tarpaulin A-frames, and again will be mixed sex and communal style living.

You may also get out and about into the local environment staying overnight in temporary satellite camps close to the National Park, deep in the rainforest or even down on the beach, depending on the work programme.


You will receive a welcome dinner at the start of your project and a departure dinner to round off your experience in Central America. One meal will also be paid for in each country, a 'street food experience' to give you a taste of the local cuisine. These will vary from markets and food stalls in order to provide you with an authentic Central American experience- expect tortillas, rice and beans to become your staple diet, with fresh fruits and vegetables and of course just a touch of chillies! There are also plenty of dishes suited to Western palate! At weekends, you can use your cooking skills or enjoy catering for yourselves and choosing from the immense variety available in markets, cafes and restaurants!

Ash boarding down volcanos  | 13 ago. 2018
It has been a busy and very exciting few weeks on the Central America Ethical Adventure Trail. Ha...

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We arrived on the island of Utila on Saturday night on a very bumpy boat ride! We found Underwate...

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Honduras and Nicaragua so far  | 11 jul. 2018
Our main destination in Honduras was an island called Utila in the Bay Islands. Utila was a reall...

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Experience a totally different way of life  | 4 jul. 2018
My first impressions of Mexico were somewhat tainted when the airline I was with mislaid my backp...

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My 6 weeks on the frontier trail were amazing. It's my first trip to central america and havi...

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Experience a deep cultural connection  | 3 jun. 2018
Week 4 was our second week on camp. It was a dramatic change from the variety of the trail, but b...

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Central America Delights!  | 15 may. 2018
We started the second week in Guatemala, at an excellent, chilled out, scenic lodge in the mounta...

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Week two saw us cross the border into Guatemala, “the land of eternal spring”. Our fi...

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Wildlife a plenty, hikes and other adventures!  | 1 abr. 2018
Week 1 Volunteer Update 1 - By Ash Hinwood I feel like the first week of the trail has gone ...

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Spanish Family Living in Central America  | 18 mar. 2018
After visiting Mexico and Guatemala for three weeks it was time to explore Honduras. After a coup...

Read more

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At each destination along the trail route there will be a range of activities for you to choose from, at extra cost. These could include watersports such as scuba diving, kayaking or jet skiing canopy zip lines, volcano boarding and horse riding, and Spanish lessons, to name but a few! Take advantage of this unique opportunity to use your newly acquired knowledge to explore these activities at local rates rather than paying tour company prices! If all this wasn't enough, our guides are always happy to advise you on where to go next! Perhaps travel down to South America, or stay on in one of these fascinating countries.

Modern conveniences

Cities through the trail

  • 24 hour supermarkets
  • Banks / ATMs
  • Bars / clubs
  • Bureau de Change
  • Dentist
  • Department store
  • Hairdresser
  • Hospital
  • Hostels / hotels
  • International Embassies and Consulates
  • Internet cafes
  • Local style restaurants
  • Mobile phone shops
  • Pay phones
  • Pharmacy
  • Traditional markets
  • Western style restaurants
  • Western Union


10 weeks € 3.245


Departs January, April, July and October


10 weeks, including a placement


Before you go

  • Pre-departure support
  • Travel & medical advice & documentation
  • Equipment advice
  • Discounted medical kit
  • Free Frontier t-shirt


  • Welcome dinner, departure dinner, street food in Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua (3 meals a day on the placement in Costa Rica)
  • All accommodation
  • Airport pick-up & drop-off (subject to flight dates and airport)
  • Ground transfers & internal travel
  • Local orientation
  • Project training
  • In-country emergency support
  • 24-hour international HQ backup


Nearest airport(s): Mexico City Juarez International Apt (MEX), Puerto Jimenez (PJM)



Flights are not included in our project costs. However, Frontier have partnered with an experienced and professional team of travel experts to help our volunteers find the best flight deals for their trips with Frontier. This travel specialist operates in the tailor-made, long haul multi-stop travel market, arranging complex airfares and transfers for independent travellers. They provide expertise, security and a vast product range along with a Travel Butler service which is a single point of contact and support whilst you are overseas.

We recommend that you obtain a quote using the following contact details rather than book online, as our partner will offer you the most competitive fares. To receive your quote or to seek any advice for your flights, please contact Frontier’s dedicated team of travel experts on 0800 082 9994 (or +44 800 082 9994 outside the UK) or email .


For fast, efficient and up-to-date visa advice please contact our recommended visa consultancy partner:

Depending on your destination country and your country of origin, you might require a visa. Please see the appropriate country consular website for details or contact our affiliate visa consultancy service. Please note that your visa will usually start on the date that you enter the destination country regardless of when it was issued. Please check with the relevant embassy or high commission. If you are purchasing your visa or paying entry/exit fees in-country you will probably need to pay in US Dollars. If you have any questions please consult the relevant embassy or high commission. Please check the visa information regularly, as changes often happen without warning.


You'll need to buy appropriate travel insurance covering your participation on the project. You won't be able to go without the right travel insurance so double check to avoid disappointment. Please make sure that you're covered for the whole duration of your trip – from the day you leave the UK to the day you return. It's also best to get your travel insurance at the same time as paying the deposit for your project. Depending on your policy, this will cover you for any unexpected cancellations.

Your insurance should include the following:

  • Medical cover, including medical emergencies and medical evacuations (up to USD$3,000,000 / GBP£2,000,000);
  • Personal liability (up to USD$1,500,000 / GBP£1,000,000);
  • Cancellation and curtailment of your trip (up to the value of your project contribution).

If you are going to be scuba diving you should get coverage for scuba diving up to 30m, including hyperbaric therapy treatment (unlimited). You should consider obtaining insurance to cover you for any additional activities which you plan to do during, before, or after your Frontier project. We recommend that you obtain cover for your baggage and personal effects.

Frontier Partner Projects and Frontier group projects are run in partnership with in-country NGOs, small community based organisations, local research institutes, academic organisations and conservation agencies. Project descriptions and information are supplied directly by our partners or field staff and are accurate at time of publishing.

We aim to keep information up to date and accurate, however, the nature of our projects and in particular the fact that they are constantly evolving and developing in response to changing needs means that project activities, travel schedules, tour itineraries and daily timetables can change overnight and without notice.