2021 DSA Ecuador Program

Dear Families, Friends, and Travelers – Welcome to the 2021 DSA 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. This first page, the Pre-Enrollment page, 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 gorgeous Ecuador!
Travel Dates: February 6, 2021 - February 13, 2021
Dates are tentative until flights are secured
Group Organizer(s):
WTT Contact:
Program Tuition: $2,190 USD - or - $2,090 USD with discount if paid in full
Airfare not included in program tuition
Estimated Airfare: $800

Tuition Calculator

There are two options for payment, including an easy installment plan.  Follow the option which works best for your family.

Program Tuition: $2,190

Pay in Full

Pay in full at the time of enrollment and receive a $100 discount off your program tuition! Payment with the discount would be:

$2,090.00

due today

Payment Plan

Pay a $500 deposit at the time of enrollment and establish a monthly payment plan. If you enroll today, your estimated* monthly payments would be:

$845.00

per month

* This is an approximate price. Your exact total will be confirmed by the Admissions Team upon enrollment.

All prices in United States Dollars.

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.

Cultural Journeys

Cultural Journeys

Cultural Journeys provide deep insight into the history, culture, and natural heritage of our host countries through authentic immersive experiences. Students will explore ancient ruins, sample new foods, and develop valuable leadership skills.

Program Highlights


Check out some of the featured experiences of your program!

Stay in an inhabited volcanic crater

Practice your Spanish language skills with locals

Hike to hidden waterfalls in the rainforest

Experience ziplining and hot springs in the Andes

Explore historic downtown Quito

The Itinerary


We work hard to create safe, engaging, and immersive itineraries for our travelers, but given the unpredictable nature of international travel we must remain flexible in our planning. Changes to a schedule are uncommon but if inclement weather pushes us off course or an unexpected opportunity arises which travelers are excited about, we reserve the right to adjust programming in the best interest of the group. 

DayLocationDescriptionLodging
February 6USA – QuitoEvening arrival to Quito and transfer to hotel in historic center. As we make our way into the capital, we will receive a brief orientation meeting from our program leader to cover some important tips for the upcoming adventure.Hotel Sol de Quito
February 7Quito – PululahuaStart the day with a walking tour of historic downtown Quito, one of the most well preserved historic districts in all of South America. After lunch we'll ascend the spires of the Basilica del Voto Nacional. In the afternoon, we'll visit the Intiñan Museum located at the equator and enjoy the disorienting coriolis effect. We'll then have dinner on the edge of Pululahua Volcano, one of the only inhabited volcanic craters in the world, and finish part two of our orientation meeting. El Crater Hotel
February 8Pululahua – OtavaloToday we'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 will make sure to stop in the Pedro Vicente Maldonado region along the way, the epicenter of Ecuador's hand-cut flower industry. Next we'll see a presentation from local expert musicians and lunch in their home, we'll even have an opportunity to build our own pan flutes! We'll finish the day with some shopping at the Plaza de los Ponchos, one of Latin America's most famous artisan market, to negotiate fair prices on world class crafts. We'll dine near the square and have the chance to sample some delicious Ecuadorian street food.Las Palmeras Inn
February 9OtavaloToday we'll hike to a secluded waterfall and pay a visit to one of the best-known master weavers in the region. Later, we will make time for a structured group reflection and activities. We can also finish up any shopping in town that we didn't get to yesterday or take advantage of the game cabin on the grounds of our hotel. Las Palmeras Inn
February 10Otavalo – Santa LuciaWe'll descend from the mountains, stopping through small towns along the way, and arrive at Santa Lucia, a community-run cloud forest reserve and conservation project. We'll hike into the Santa Lucia Nature Reserve, passing a multitude of unique flora and fauna along the way, and receive an introduction to the cloud forest ecosystem in one of the most biodiverse places on earth. We'll settle into our jungalows and fall asleep to the sounds of the cloud forest.Santa Lucia Nature Reserve
February 11Santa Lucia – PapallactaAs we ascend into the mountains again, we'll either stop and go on a zip-line tour of Nanegalito's cloud forest canopy or go white water rafting in Mindo. We'll then travel to Papallacta Hot Springs high in the Andes and spend our last night soaking in the springs under the stars. We'll have a structured reflection to discuss our experience and some other group activities.Termas de Papallacta
February 12Papallacta – Quito – USAWe'll have an optional short hike in the morning to see the ecosystems that characterize the Antisana Reserve, then travel from Papallacta to Quito. Later, we'll ride a cable car up Pichincha Volcano or head over to Parque Itchimbia to see a final panoramic view of Quito, then have a final goodbye dinner before our international flight tonight.Airplane
February 13USAArrive home!Your own bed, eventually!

Accommodations


In order to provide a safe and memorable experience for travelers, we follow strict guidelines when choosing our accommodations. Walking Tree partners with locally-operated, three-star equivalent hotels which are centrally located, clean, safe and wifi-enabled. 

For rooming, travelers are grouped by gender, and will never share rooms with people who are not associated with their group.  Non-binary travelers are accommodated. Group Organizers and Program Leaders, along with any other traveling adult, are roomed separately from students.
Below are the hotels we anticipate using on your trip, subject to availability. 
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. Free Wi-Fi access throughout the building keeps everyone feeling connected. Students will be grouped in their rooms according to gender and availability.

Santa Lucia Eco Lodge

Located high in the Ecuadorian cloud forest, this eco-lodge is only accessible by foot, but the 45 minute hike up to the lodge rewards guests with unbeatable views of the surround nature reserve. Selected for its dedication to conservation, it is also a convenient base from which to assist local researchers with their wildlife conservation projects in the area. Free Wi-Fi access throughout the building keeps everyone feeling connected. Students will be grouped in their rooms according to gender and availability.

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. Free Wi-Fi access throughout the building keeps everyone feeling connected. Students will be grouped in their rooms according to gender and availability.

Las Palmeras Inn Otavalo

This 150 year old highlands ranch is designed in traditional Andean styles. A collection of garden cottages each with their own fireplace, Las Palmeras Inn provides unmatched tranquility in a gorgeous mountain setting. Free Wi-Fi access throughout the building keeps everyone feeling connected. Students will be grouped in their rooms according to gender and availability.

Las Termas de Papallacta

Las Termas de Papallacta is an ideal escape to nature with its collection of hot springs, comfortable accommodations, and beautiful mountain scenery. Whether soaking in the springs, star gazing, or taking advantage of any of the nearby hikes, Las Termas feels more like an experience than a hotel. Free Wi-Fi access throughout the building keeps everyone feeling connected. Students will be grouped in their rooms according to gender and availability.

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

We wanted our 16 year old son’s first experience traveling without the family to be a positive one. We wanted a true quality program and are so glad his school chose Walking Tree. Everything went absolutely smoothly on the trip. Our son has told us again and again how wonderful, informed, friendly, and absolutely critical to the success of the trip the Walking Tree staff was.

Tina
Parent of Leo Narbonne, traveler on Peru 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. 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, 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.

Learn More

Top