Ecuador: The Galápagos Islands and the Andes

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Ecuador: The Galápagos Islands and the Andes

During this high school summer abroad program in Ecuador, explore the country’s various geographical areas: the Andes Mountains, the upper Amazon basin, and the Galápagos archipelago. In each location, you will learn about the richness of Ecuador’s ecology and wildlife and the importance of preserving them. Investigate rare plant and animal species on the Galápagos Islands. Go on excursions to mountains, hot springs, and a primary forest. Paddle into the heart of the jungle on a guided canoe expedition and learn about indigenous Ecuadorian traditions.
 
Your discovery of Ecuador’s ecology takes place throughout every stage of the program. On your first excursion, you will see the rivers and diverse wildlife of the Mindo Nambillo cloud forest. In the Amazon basin, you will see the stunning waterfalls of the Banos and observe monkeys and exotic birds as you canoe down the Napo River. During your homestay week, hike up from the first base camp to the second shelter (16,400 feet above sea level) of Chimborazo, an inactive volcano that reaches 20,800 feet above sea level, and then bike down through a beautiful Andean landscape. The program’s four days in the Galápagos will give you the opportunity to learn about the fragile ecology and unique biodiversity of these remarkable islands. Cruise by night from island to island, swim alongside seals in lava grottoes, explore mangrove forests and flamingo lagoons, and observe the courtship displays of rare tropical birds.
You’ll also experience Ecuadorian cities and learn about the country’s history and cultures. See the gold-inlaid sixteenth-century churches and colonial buildings of Quito’s Old Town. Ride a train to Devil’s Nose. Improve your Spanish language skills through interactive lessons and conversations with local residents. Riobamba, a small city surrounded by the snow-capped Andes, provides the setting for a weeklong homestay. Share daily activities such as sports, movies, and walks through town with your host family. Learn how to prepare a typical dish such as ceviche or empanadas and, working alongside a local nonprofit, participate in a three-day community service project.

Subjects

  • Culture

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