This is School of the World

This isn’t your typical vacation. This is a chance to vacation with a passion.
Learn to surf, speak Spanish, practice yoga, use a GoPro or master digital photography, all in the
beautiful tropical setting of Playa Jaco, Costa Rica.

Learning Vacations for {fading_words}

Founded in 1997, the School of the World combines elements of boutique hotel, surf camp, language school, yoga retreat, and photography workshop under one roof.  Like-minded travelers from all over the world come here to pursue a passion, learn some new skills, and make lifelong friendships.

"Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever."

- Gandhi

see what we do

Take a look at all the awesome stuff that goes on at S.O.T.W.

Programs

Exercise your mind, body, and spirit. Our expert instructors cater to all skill levels from beginners to advanced, and we have a lot of different combinations to choose from. Our surprisingly affordable programs are offered in 1,2,3, and 4+ week durations.

lodging

Surfing

Warm water year round, consistent surf conditions, and local breaks for all levels of surfers, the Playa Jaco area is an amazing place to surf! The School of the World has been widely respected as one of the top surf schools in Costa Rica for over 16 years.

 More about Surfing

lodging

Spanish

Learn conversational Spanish you can immediately put to use with local native speakers. Class sizes are small and our experienced instructors keep learning fun and relaxed.

More about Spanish

lodging

Photography

Beginners become acquainted with the fundamentals of photography, digital workflow, and basic digital editing. Intermediate and advanced photographers learn new shooting techniques and advanced editing, and students of all skill levels benefit from having a local guide take them to shoot at amazing locales they otherwise would never see.

More about Photography

lodging

GoPro

Strap them on a helmet, mount them on a surfboard, bike, car or any other type of vehicle on land or in the water and document the story of your inner action hero. Our new GoPro course will teach you how to take advantage of all of the features of these great little cameras, showing you the same techniques and tricks the pros use to get the "money" shots. We will also teach you how to edit your own short action video.

More about GoPro

lodging

Yoga

Our certified instructors blend their training in Ashtanga, Iyengar, and Anusara yoga into the practice. Whether you are a beginner or have years of experience, our intention is for you to leave with the tools necessary to enrich and deepen your practice.

More about Yoga

lodging
 

Lodging

Our beautiful facility has free Wi-Fi for our guests, a shared kitchen and dining area, 12 guestrooms, outdoor lounge, pool, garden, and lots of great spots to hang out and relax. It is located in a quiet neighborhood close to the center of town and is just a few minutes walk from the beach, dozens of great restaurants, bars, grocery stores, and everything else you could need.

More about our Lodging

the experience
 
 
 

How it Works

Never been on a learning vacation? Learning something new is the ultimate souvenir; it outlasts the usual vacation sunburns, bug bites, and hangovers, and makes the experience stay with you forever. Here is how it works:

 
  • get here read more »
     
    1. 1. Select the programs, lodging, and dates that work for you.
    2. 2. Submit your application and pay your deposit.
    3. 3. Book your ticket and pack your bags. (Celebration dance optional!) We can also help arrange your transportation from the airport to our facility.
  • get schooled read more »
     
    1. 1. Arrive and settle in. Ahhhh, tropical paradise.
    2. 2. Take classes in a relaxed and friendly environment.
    3. 3. Benefit from the local knowledge of our staff that treats you like family.
  • get friendly read more »
     
    1. 1. Socialize and make new friends with like-minded travelers at the school from around the world.
    2. 2. Settle in to the "Pura Vida" lifestyle, with local restaurants, markets, bars, and beach all just walking distance from your doorstep.
    3. 3. Plan to extend your stay, because you won't want to say goodbye!
 
people are talking
 
 

Kind Words

Having hosted guests of all walks of life from over 40 countries over the last 16 years, we have a great reputation and history. We are recommended by the top travel experts and publications- but who better to tell you about us than your fellow travelers? Take a look at what people have to say about their experiences at School of the World:

I want in
  • “My experience at The School of the World was priceless. It was full of laughter, sun, and great people. It was magical. Straight-up better than anything Disney has to offer 6 year olds. You should go there and make some of the best memories of your life.”

    - Lindsay, Kansas
    Surf and Yoga retreat Costa Rica
  • “I was heading off on my first solo travel adventure, armed with a whole load of enthusiasm and next to zero Spanish… Laura, my Spanish instructor, was fantastic and managed to get the girl who couldn’t do languages to a point where travelling and chatting was easy and fun! The school gave me the confidence and the necessary tools to have the adventure of a lifetime.”

    - Hannah, London, UK
    Spanish School Costa Rica
  • “The founders and staff of SOTW have created such an incredible and unique opportunity for travelers. The vibe cultivated between students was perhaps the most memorable thing. The 18 of us, from ten different countries and spanning a couple of decades in age, felt like one big chilled-out, respectful family the entire time. So cool.”

    - Mike, New York
    School of the World Costa Rica
  • “School of the World is a wonderfully unique concept. A beautifully designed place of learning where surfing, Spanish, photography and yoga all coexist. Every day is packed with as much or as little activity as you want and your fellow students are friendly and adventurous spirits from all over the world.”

    - Mark, South Africa
    studentstestimonial7
  • “The whole concept of this school is one of a kind. This was truly a wonderful experience. The staff was very helpful and very nice. I have taken surfing and yoga, since I am very active person. If you want to meet wonderful people, learn something new and have fun than this is the place to be. Highly recommend to everyone.”

    - Iva, Prague, Czech Republic
    surf and yoga camp Costa Rica
  • “I booked SOTW because I was traveling alone and through the reviews I felt it would be a safe place to stay at especially since I’m a girl. At the last minute my girlfriend came with and all I have to say is WE HAD A BLAST!! I went for the surfing classes, it being one of those bucket list type of things for me. The staff is friendly, the instructors were awesome, and the school itself is simply breathtakingly beautiful.”

    - Ginji, Miami, FL
    School of the World students

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