Sabine's Smiling Horses in Costa Rica

Volunteering

Our stable             Smiling Horses is an established riding stable since 1999 in Monteverde. In many guidebooks, you can read that we are well known not only for the quality of our horses and the diversity of our tours, but also for the special care we show all of our customers.

We are constantly improving the quality of our service, horses and farm.  Our volunteers can participate in our place with their input too.

Our farm is located 8 km outside of the village of Santa Elena, where we can see toucans, toucanettes, motmots, bellbirds and parrots. We ride on campesino trails that offer excellent views of the Pacific Ocean and the stunning local landscape.

We have been providing safe and enjoyable experiences for riders of all ages.  We take pride in the special care and attention we give to all of our customers.

Location                 Monteverde in the mountains at 1100 m above sea level and a jacket at times is needed, since weather can be chilly at times. Raining season is between October and November all the way through. Monteverde is 3 hours from San Jose and 2 1/2 hours from Liberia airport.

Monteverde is a well-known tourist area that provides several private Reserves in the Cloud Forest, Canopy tours, ATV, hanging bridges, butterfly garden.

Our farm is located about 8 km out of townn and there is a bus service available about 4 times a day.

Home stay             The cost for a private room, including meals is $ 150 US per week, laundry included. We have no public water or phone line. Volunteers are needing to have a local phone card to be able to access internet. The WiFi signal in the area is strong. Volunteers are also expected to help with some basic things at the house. The bathroom is private. As the volunteer gets to ride our horses in exchange for help taking care of them and some basic garden and farm work. We also include the volunteers in some of our private activities to get more involved in local activities, which could be attending equestrian endurance races or else. If we can manage to safe them a way by bus or taxi we will coordinate that.

Job description     Basic horse care such as cleaning fur, hoofs, washing the horses and cleaning the stable, feeding, saddle and unsaddle the horses are necessary or changing horses between different fields. The project is suitable for horse lovers and people with experience with horses.

Volunteers are having the benefit to ride our horses.

We maintain 7 ha of field on our farm, so sometimes there is the need to do some work in the field or grass that need to be cut, some weading around the house as well as keeping track of our fruit trees and vegetable garden.

Some volunteers also like our other farm animals and like feeding the dogs and cats or like to share some cooking adventures.

Depending on the skills of volunteers we do also work on some projects to improve the quality of the riding stable or work our young horses on the ground.

Working hours        We do not have fixed working hours as we are depending on weather and tourism. There are always days to take off. Mornings or afternoons depending on the daily schedule. This flexibility can sometimes be annoying, but also interesting and challenging. All other work is usually talked through on a day-to-day base about 4 to 5 hours a day, during the time from 7 AM to 4 PM.

Volunteering time   Minimum volunteering time is 4 weeks, better is longer. Some volunteers stay up to 3 months. We are open for any time above that too. We do take the first week of stay to see, if volunteering with us is benefit able for the both parts.

 

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