The Pull of Tropical Tides

Volunteer in Mexico

Fall in love with the warm, diverse Mexican coast – and culture – while you learn, live, and dive in the balmy Caribbean.

Sun-soaked tropical beaches. Vibrant island corals. Remote, lush rainforests. All of these habitats – beautiful, but vulnerable – await our volunteers in Mexico. Join our dedicated team and work to preserve these spectacular and fragile ecosystems while fully immersing yourself in the joy, adventure and mystery they offer.

Critical science

Critical science

You'll contribute to vital conservation research targeted at protecting the earth's most valuable ecosystems.
Ethical engagement

Ethical engagement

Using the UN's SDGs as a framework, we've made a commitment to positive, constructive and sustainable impact.
Beautiful adventures

Beautiful adventures

You'll spend your days exploring some of the world's most breathtaking, exhilarating and remote wildernesses.

Mexico volunteer projects

Volunteer in Mexico

Volunteer opportunities in Mexico offer the chance to experience  exciting attractions while making a positive contribution to global sustainable development goals.

You could choose to volunteer in Mexico on programs focusing on marine conservation. Our marine conservation programs also offer the opportunity to begin, or further, your Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) certification. While volunteering in Mexico, you could earn your PADI Coral Reef Researcher Distinctive Speciality, PADI Open Water Diver, or PADI Advanced Open Water Diver certification. 

All our programs are community-led, meaning you’ll get to work with GVI’s local partners and community members on projects and interact with local people in your day-to-day life. This is a great opportunity to learn more about Mexico first-hand.

Mexico is home to more than 30 World Heritage Sites, which have been set up to preserve Mexico’s cultural heritage. Modern Mexicans have preserved many of the cultural practises of their ancestors, and each region has different cultural traditions. The culture of Mexico is as diverse as the types of terrains you’ll find here. 

Spanish is the most commonly spoken language in Mexico, and while volunteering in Mexico you’ll get to listen to, learn and try this language. Being surrounded by the culture and language of Mexico can take your experience to a whole new level while volunteering abroad.

Volunteer work in Mexico means contributing to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs). There are a variety of volunteer opportunities in Mexico to choose from, with each one offering a meaningful experience.

Opportunities to volunteer in Mexico

You can choose to take part in our marine conservation expedition and work towards conserving the second largest barrier reef system in the world and by working with our local partners the projects done are instrumental in allowing us to make a sustainable impact while volunteering in Mexico. This means that GVI can make a positive impact that can last long into the future, and be maintained by the local community. 

GVI follows a strict child and vulnerable adult protection policy. Because of this, we no longer work with orphanages. Read our stance on orphanage volunteering for more information.

Which types of programs are available when volunteering in Mexico?

Volunteer in marine conservation in Mexico

With Mexico’s abundance of marine life, it’s the perfect place to learn about marine conservation. Marine conservation volunteer work in Mexico is all about making a positive impact on our oceans, while learning new skills. 

For under 18s, there’s the opportunity to take part in the PADI diving and marine conservation teen volunteering in Mexico program. Here volunteers can learn about and participate in existing marine conservation projects in the area. They can also gain their PADI Open Water Diver certification by doing the PADI Advanced Open Water and marine conservation teen volunteer program in Mexico. This program offers volunteers who already have their PADI Open Water Diver certification to earn their PADI Advanced Open Water Diver certification as part of their marine conservation program.

You could also earn your PADI Coral Reef Researcher Distinctive Speciality certification, in addition to your PADI Advanced Open Water Diver certification, when you volunteer on the advanced divers marine conservation expedition in Mexico.

Each program can get you skilled up, and participating in marine conservation in a meaningful way. You can take part in these programs from April to October.

Where can I volunteer in Mexico with GVI?

Volunteer in Puerto Morelos

GVI’s base camp is in the town of Puerto Morelos, situated on a stretch of the Caribbean coastline known as the Riviera Maya. Puerto Morelos is the oldest town on the Mexican Caribbean coast. 

The Riviera Maya is a top tourist destination, and there are many spots for snorkelling and diving in this area. 

While the biggest industry in Puerto Morelos is tourism, fishing comes in a close-second. The fishing trade is essential to the economic well-being of this Mexican community. 

Volunteer work in Puerto Morelos focuses on marine conservation. Volunteers assist the local community in planning and implementing sustainable practices aimed at making a positive impact in Puerto Morelos. 

This may mean assisting the local community with beach cleans, to reduce environmental pollution. It could also involve volunteers contributing to marine conservation by running environmental awareness workshops with school children and the broader community. Another way that sustainability is promoted is through programs focused on the conservation of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, and other marine life. These programs look to find the balance between the usage and maintenance of natural resources in Puerto Morelos.

Volunteer work in Mexico that’s focused on marine conservation has an immediate effect on the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, as well as on the well-being of other marine life in the Riviera Maya.

By contributing to sustainable development efforts on land and in the sea, this volunteer work in Mexico can go a long way in contributing to the sustainability of the Puerto Morelos community.

FAQs about volunteering in Mexico

Q: What’s the weather like in Mexico?

A: The weather in Puerto Morelos fluctuates little throughout the year with an average annual temperature of 24 degrees Celsius. The warmest months in this temperate climate are June, July and August. Since Mexico is a large country, the weather can vary significantly from one region to the next. 

Q: Do I have to speak Spanish to volunteer in Mexico?

A: It’s not essential to be fluent in Spanish when volunteering in Mexico. GVI’s staff and partners are all able to communicate in English and will provide support before, during and after your volunteer experience. Being able to speak some Spanish when travelling to Mexico will go a long way in assisting you to communicate with local people. This may make your experience more meaningful.

Q: Is it safe to volunteer in Mexico?

A: As with travel to any country, when volunteering in Mexico, volunteers should take the same precautions they would back home. Higher crime rates tend to be concentrated in the bigger cities. Puerto Morelos is a small town where crime is much less of a concern. Volunteers are expected to take reasonable precautions to ensure their own safety when they travel outside of the hub. GVI’s staff offer 360 degree support during your stay in Mexico.

Read GVI’s health and safety policies here.

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Get an exclusive offer on conservation programs!

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New and Exclusive: GVI Experiences

A locally curated selection of extra activities are now included across our programs.

Learn to cook traditional Yucatán food

Visit a Mayan ruin

Take a beach yoga class

Dive through the cenotes

Stand-up paddleboard at sunrise

Climb rock formations in the jungle

Learn the unique geography of the Yucatán Peninsula

Explore the ancient city of Coba