We have all heard it many times before: Travel is addicting.


It’s an opportunity to become the strong, courageous adventurer you’ve always wanted to be. It allows you to experience beautifully diverse cultures, meet incredibly inspirational people, and create memories that will certainly last a lifetime. So why isn’t everyone booking a flight somewhere right now?

There are many things that tend to hold us back from committing to travel. While those reasons can vary, oftentimes it’s just the grand notion of travel itself that can be overwhelming. Removing yourself from your comfort zone could simply be the only thing holding you back from an experience of a lifetime.

What are some of the other reasons people don’t launch themselves into exploring the vast corners of this majestic world? Many people are fearful of traveling solo and that is completely understandable. It can be difficult even deciding where to begin. How do you plan for the food, accommodations, and the perceived financial strain? How do you feel assured of one’s own safety? How do you find like-minded individuals, and most importantly, how do you have a trip that is fulfilling, inspirational, and positively unforgettable? Digesting all of these details and decisions that come with the initial stages of planning your travel, simply put, can be overwhelming.  

The unique volunteer program within Dreamsea Surf Camp of Costa Rica is the perfect introduction to travel for the first time, solo adventurer. At Dreamsea we receive people of all ages, from all walks of life and backgrounds, who arrive on their own, and end up leaving with friends from all over the world. You meet people who will want to keep traveling with you, people whom you plan to meet again later on in your life, and people who will eventually open their homes to you in different parts of the world. The Dreamsea family shares a special connection that continues to provide and encourage companionship on this wild adventure called life!

Mikaela Hawkins, a colorful and impassioned 19-year old solo female traveler, came to Dreamsea Surf Camp in Costa Rica without having any previous travel experience. Here is what she had to say about the many reasons why Dreamsea is the perfect destination for a solo traveler. 

“I always knew I wanted to travel. I just had no idea how I was going to pull it off. From a young age, especially being female, I have been warned to be safe wherever I go. So when I took some time off from University and booked a flight to another country, people had concerns. When I was exploring my options I knew I had to be aware of a few things. Money and safety were big ones followed by fun and meeting people who shared similar values to me! I wanted to be doing things I was passionate about ( surf, yoga, outdoors, art), and I wanted to be doing them with people that enjoyed those same things as well!

The volunteer program has allowed me to travel for much longer than I ever thought was possible for me. I have seen and heard others share similar experiences as well. Dreamsea’s volunteer program is vast and there is something for everyone. The volunteering is not seen as work but seen as a chance to be surrounded by rad people while working as a team. Everything here is done together and done with love. It really is a family, and I have never seen such kindness and community in one place. I would have been much more fearful to travel if I had not found Dreamsea Costa Rica. Just thinking of traveling was overwhelming for me. Having to budget food, accommodation, and also transportation to get to all the extra and fun activities can add up. At Dreamsea it’s all here for you in one place.

I was speaking with a girl who just arrived from Germany last night and she was telling me how everything flows gracefully here. Of course there is a lot of hard work behind Dreamsea but because of the attitude of the staff and volunteers, it seems effortless and relaxed.

When I first stepped out of the taxi with my bags I wondered what I had gotten myself into. I felt as though I had stepped into the pages of the jungle book. Teepees were scattered among the trees and glowed like lanterns welcoming me in. Kittens played in the bushes. I could hear someone playing guitar music in the treetops. People were gathered in a circle laughing, and enjoying each other’s company. I knew immediately that I had arrived at a very special place, and one that is understandably loved by so many. You can feel it in the air. There is a special quality of magic that infuses the place.

Like most, I came to Dreamsea eager to learn to surf. Having had zero surf experience in my life I thought this would be just the time to learn. How hard could it be? Turns out it is hard. There are only so many times you can fall off the board before you start to get discouraged. Trying to be synchronized with the ocean makes this an especially challenging sport! There is an element of surprise where you never quite know what will happen, which is thrilling but very intimidating. Day after day I saw the glow that surfing gives people. The buzz of happiness you get from riding a wave. It lights you up from the inside out. Today I went in the water to try surfing again. I naturally picked the spot where the most people were, probably for comfort. Half an hour went by and I was just getting pounded by the waves.

I decided to take a break from the ocean for a little and just enjoy everything else Dreamsea had to offer. Surf is a huge part of Dreamsea Surf Camp but there are so many activities and fun things to be a part of that you could still have a blast without ever touching a board. That’s what’s so special about the place; there is something for everyone. I didn’t want to give up on surfing quite yet so I told myself I’d try it a few more times. I paddled out of the spot I had been in and I headed to a new spot. Minutes later I caught my first real wave. I wish I could explain to you this feeling.  Words are inadequate and cannot really do justice to it. It’s a buzz that travels through your entire body, and makes you feel alive in the most invigorating way possible. I finally understood why surfing is such a deeply loved sport. By leaving what was comfortable and trying something new, I caught my first wave and now I want a million more!

I have a feeling traveling can be explained in the same way. It’s not always smooth, and sometimes it can be overwhelming and unpredictable, but if you take the risk and paddle out (even if you are by yourself) something amazing is bound to happen. I could not have found a more perfect place to begin my travels. I came to Dreamsea Surf Camp in Costa Rica alone but I am leaving with an entire family, and the confidence to continue my travels as I continue to catch waves!

Learn more about Dreamsea Surf Camp of Costa Rica, and our volunteer program here!

Learn More

Volunteer Today