Ecuador: The Galápagos Islands and the Andes

Make Your Summer Matter

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

Related Programs

Mexico: Marine Biology on the Baja Peninsula

Please visit our website for more information. Spend a summer abroad experiencing different marine environments and regional cultures as you travel from the coastal city of La Paz — situated between desert mountains and the Gulf of California — to the Yucatán Peninsula on this program for high school students. Meet with marine biologists, researchers, and guides in La Paz. Learn about the history of human and animal habitation in the peninsula. Snorkel among coral reefs, observing sea lions in their natural habitats, on the beautiful island of Espíritu Santo, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. During this period, you live with a Mexican family, which opens up amazing windows into Mexican culture. Take advantage of continuous opportunities for Spanish language study while experiencing the region’s incredible natural environments and regional culture with host family members. As the program moves to the Yucatán in southeastern Mexico — from desert to jungle — you experience a completely different natural environment. Learn about pearl farming on the island of Cozumel and witness ongoing ecosystem restoration efforts through the installation of artificial reefs. Take a late-night beach walk to watch giant sea turtles laying eggs on the sand. Travel to Akumal beach for a guided snorkel excursion with sea turtles and manta rays. Witness the region’s strong Maya cultural influence, and visit the Maya archaeological ruins at Coba or Tulum. The program begins and ends in Mexico City, giving you time to deepen your knowledge of Mexico’s culture, history, and food from the vantage point of the country’s expansive capital city. Visit the Zócalo, Catedral Metropolitana de la Asunción de María, or Frida Kahlo Museum, or take a walking tour of the old city. Orientation: Mexico City, 3–4 days Homestay: La Paz, 11–12 days Other Accommodations: Hotels, eco-lodge, ranch

Experiment In International Living

PO Box 676

Spain: Language and Cultural Traditions

Please visit our website for more information.

Rapidly improve your Spanish through a month of immersive language study and historical and contemporary exploration through Spain. Begin your month of language immersion in Spain’s capital — Madrid — as you spend time at the city’s famous sites and museums, explore its neighborhoods, and sample Spanish cuisine. Then, travel to southern Spain, to the province of Andalucía, where you will engage in intensive Spanish language training.

This high school summer abroad program has two separate language groups. One group has Spanish training in the historic city of Granada, where, for four hours each day, the group attends small-group, interactive language classes divided by language level at the Centro de Lenguas y Educación Intercultural. Learn inside and outside the classroom through music, film, city scavenger hunts, and field trips. After class, take advantage of opportunities to meet up with Spanish students learning English and join them for sporting or cultural events. The program’s other group has language classes and immersive arts training in Guadix. This group participates in workshops focused on flamenco, ceramics, theatrical performance, and other arts, in addition to the language training. In Guadix, there are opportunities to learn about Romani culture and Gitano identity and to perform flamenco and traditional village dances with local community members.

Both groups explore Granada’s sites — including the Alhambra, city gardens, and local museums — to better understand the city’s historical layers and contemporary culture. All students also have a homestay in an Andalusian town. Enjoy family meals and visit local markets, beaches, and cafés as you continue to enhance your Spanish through constant conversation with host family members. The program incorporates some outdoor activities such as camping, trekking, and excursions to the beach. Students return to Madrid for final reflection and language practice before departing for home.

Language Certificate: At the conclusion of this program, each participant will earn a language certificate noting how many hours of language classes s/he completed.

Orientation: Madrid, 3 days
Homestay: Guadix, Priego, or Motril, 10–12 days
Other Accommodations: Hotels, student residence, camping lodge

Experiment In International Living

PO Box 676

Terms & Conditions   Privacy Policy