2019 Decatur Ecuador Service Adventure

Dear Families, Friends, and Travelers – Welcome to the 2019 Decatur Ecuador Program!  We have created two webpages dedicated to this once in a lifetime experience so that travelers are as informed as possible throughout the process. The first page, Pre-Enrollment, is meant to share exciting details, highlights, and pertinent info, that participants will want to know before enrolling. Once enrolled, the Post-Enrollment page is intended to prepare travelers for participation on the adventure ahead. Please be sure to review the information on the appropriate page thoroughly and get excited for Ecuador!
Travel Dates: September 20, 2019 - September 28, 2019
Group Organizer(s):
WTT/SSA Contact:
Program Tuition: $2,250 USD
Airfare not included in program tuition
Confirmed Airfare: $847
Deadline(s): Interested families should enroll by Friday, June 1st

Tuition Calculator

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Program Tuition: $2,250

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Ecuador Service Adventure

Dense Amazonian rainforest, snow-capped Andean peaks, and volcanic islands that gave birth to our understanding of evolution – Ecuador is a place of many wonders. From Quito’s historic colonial district to the bustling markets of Otavalo to quite communities tucked into rolling mountains, our Ecuador Service Adventure will introduce you to parts of the country well off the beaten path and fill you with the excitement which have drawn adventurous travelers to the country for years.

Service Adventures

Service Adventures

Service Adventures combine local homestays, adventure travel, and meaningful service projects. Students will be truly immersed in our host communities allowing them the time to reflect on their complex and important role as global citizens.

Program Highlights


Check out some of the possible featured experiences of your coming adventure! Each customized itinerary is unique, but these are just a few of the activities which may be available during your program.

Work on a community service project in Nanegal

Stay in an inhabited volcanic crater

Experience ziplining and hot springs in the Andes

Explore historic downtown Quito

The Itinerary


We work hard to create engaging, educational, and truly immersive itineraries for our travelers. However, we also know that travel can be unpredictable, so we always design our experiences to be flexible enough to allow for adjustments based on group interests, unexpected opportunities, and any weather or safety concerns that may arise during your program. Should changes to the itinerary occur, we will notify travelers and families as quickly as possible. 

DateLocationActivityLodging
September 20USA – QuitoEvening arrival to Quito and transfer to hotel.Sol De Quito Hotel
September 21Quito – PululahuaStart the day with a tour of historic downtown Quito, one of the most well preserved historic districts in all of South America. We'll visit the Presidential Palace, and ascend the spires of the Basilica del Voto Nacional. In the afternoon, we'll straddle the equator before dining on the edge of Pululahua Volcano, one of the only inhabited volcanic craters in the world.El Crater Hotel
September 22Pululahua – OtavaloWe'll drive between breathtaking mountains and valleys to Otavalo, where we will spend the day visiting artisan workshops and learning firsthand about Ecuadorian/Andean culture (music, dress, and cuisine). We'll see a presentation from local expert musicians, then have lunch in their home before visiting a local weaver's workshop. We'll finish the day with some shopping at the Plaza de los Ponchos, one of Latin America's most famous artisan markets. We'll dine overlooking the square, and have the chance to sample some delicious Ecuadorian street food.Las Palmeras Inn
September 23Otavalo - NanegalWe'll descend from the mountains, stopping through small towns along the way, and arrive at our host community of Nanegal. Here we'll meet our homestay families, orient ourselves in the town, and learn about our community service project. In the afternoon, we'll take a hike to a lookout to see the entire valley in which Nanegal is situated. Throughout the program, we'll have the opportunity to interact with local community members in Spanish, participate in cross-cultural exchanges, and learn more about the rich culture of Ecuador.Nanegal Homestays
September 24NanegalDuring our stay in Nanegal, we'll wake up early to work on our community service project and spend time with host families in the afternoons and evenings. Evening activities will vary, ranging from hikes to waterfalls, swimming in the river, dancing, playing music, farm visits, and generally getting to know the beautiful and unique culture and history of Nanegal.Nanegal Homestays
September 25NanegalToday we'll look to finish the remainder of our community service project and spend time with host families in the afternoons and evenings. We can also look forward to a going away party after our brief but meaningful stay in this special village.Nanegal Homestays
September 26Nanegal – PapallactaWe'll finish up work on the service project and have a final thank you meal with community leaders and host families before departing Nanegal. As we ascend into the mountains again, we'll stop and go on a zip-line tour of cloud forest canopy in Nanegalito. We'll travel to Papallacta Hot Springs high in the Andes. We will spend spend our last night in the wildlife reserve La Jimenita. We'll have a structured reflection to discuss our experience, and some other group activities.Hacienda Jimenita
September 27Papallacta – QuitoWe'll have an optional short hike in the morning to watch the different humming birds that live in the reserve. Walk the trails and enjoy the scenery. Then travel from Papallacta to Quito. We'll ride a cable car up Pichincha Volcano to see a final panoramic of Quito, then have a final goodbye dinner before heading to the airport for our flight later tonight.Airplane
September 28USAWe arrive back in Atlanta around 6AM this morning.Your own bed, eventually!

Accommodations


In order to provide a safe and memorable experience for our travelers, teachers, staff, Program Leaders and Country Directors, we follow strict guidelines when deciding on lodging, making reservations, and assigning program participants to rooms.

Travelers will always be grouped in rooms and/or sleeping areas by gender, and will never share rooms with people who are not associated with their Walking Tree group. Group Organizers and Program Leaders will be roomed separately from each other and from other students. Walking Tree partners with locally-operated, three star or equivalent hotels that are centrally located, clean, safe and wifi-enabled. 

 

Below are a few examples of our partner hotels. Although these are our preferred providers, they are subject to change based on availability. Your final itinerary will provide complete information on your accommodations in the cities you will be visiting.
Hotel Sol de Quito

This hotel in Quito’s commercial and financial districts offers comfortable accommodations and modern amenities in a charming colonial style. The hotel is family owned and operated and boasts a large collection of historical artifacts that give it a unique character.

El Crater Hotel

Situated on the precipice of the Volcano Pululahua, the hotel’s supreme location is unlike any other accommodation on the planet. Each room contains large windows from which students can admire the beauty of this setting and watch the ever-changing climate of the area from the comfort of their rooms.

Las Palmeras Inn Otavalo

This 150 year old highlands ranch is designed in traditional Andean styles. A collection of garden cottages each with its own fireplace, Las Palmeras Inn provides unmatched tranquility in a gorgeous mountain setting.

Homestay

Staying with a host family allows our travelers to truly immerse themselves in the culture of their destination, and to build lasting friendships with local people in the host community.

Hacienda Jimenita

Hacienda Jimenita is a 109 year old Hacienda that is family owned and operated. It has been in the Cruz Lopez family for four generations and contains its own private botanical wildlife reserve. Guests can explore the vast forests of fruit trees and vegetable gardens, as well as enjoy the company of more than 90 rare species of birds in the area. The Cruz Lopez family provides an incredible experience that allows guests to escape the bustle of the city and settle into a peaceful, natural setting, all while staying connected through wireless internet.

Safety and Support


 EASY FUNDRAISING & PAYMENT
EASY FUNDRAISING & PAYMENT
24/7 GLOBAL EMERGENCY LINE
24/7 GLOBAL EMERGENCY LINE
HIGHLY VETTED PARTNERS
HIGHLY VETTED PARTNERS
EXPERT LEADERSHIP
EXPERT LEADERSHIP
PRIVATE GROUP GUARANTEE
PRIVATE GROUP GUARANTEE
COMPREHENSIVE CURRICULUM SUPPORT
COMPREHENSIVE CURRICULUM SUPPORT
DEDICATION TO CULTURAL ENGAGEMENT
DEDICATION TO CULTURAL ENGAGEMENT
ALL-INCLUSIVE PRICING
ALL-INCLUSIVE PRICING

My son had a wonderful experience in Costa Rica, helped to build a preschool classroom, and has created memories that will last a lifetime!

Jodi
Parent of traveler on Costa Rica Service Adventure

Your Adventure Includes

Estimated Airfare

In order to give our travelers the best possible price, we break out airfare from the Program Tuition. We will still handle all booking and ticketing via our flight partner who has access to special fares not available to the general public. We will provide full transparency in cost so that families pay what the flight costs and nothing more. You will be invoiced for the flight once we are able to secure the group’s airline contract.

Program Tuition Excludes: Premiere Travel insurance, baggage fees, airline minor fees, passport/visa fees, laundry, souvenirs, and activities not listed on itinerary.

 

Need to Raise Money? We have you covered.

Our travelers are provided with funding opportunities that are easy to implement and fun to take part in. Our flagship fundraiser involves selling fair trade, organic, shade-grown, carbon-neutral coffee from a women’s collective in Peru. There is no limit to the amount you can earn, so get started now by clicking the link below!

START FUNDRAISING  

WTT coffee
Resource center

Resource Center

Why should high school students travel abroad? What happens if a participant gets sick? How quickly do we need to enroll? We’re sure you have plenty of questions and we’ve got you covered! Visit our Resource Center to discover the answers to your most pressing questions and contact us anytime with additional questions.

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