2023 Weston Ecuador Cultural Journey

Dear Families, Friends, and Travelers – Welcome to the 2023 Weston Ecuador Cultural Journey! We have created two webpages dedicated to this exciting opportunity: this first page, the Pre-Enrollment Page, is meant to share exciting details, highlights and pertinent info that potential travelers will want to know before enrolling. Once enrolled, the Post-Enrollment Page, is meant to prepare travelers for participation on the adventure ahead. Please be sure to review the information on the appropriate page thoroughly and we hope you are excited for all Ecuador has to offer!!
Travel Dates: April 13, 2023 - April 22, 2023
Program Tuition: $2,990 USD
Airfare not included in program tuition
Confirmed Airfare: $1,199

Tuition Calculator

There are two options for payment, including an interest-free installment plan.  Follow whichever works best for your family. If we are within 90 days of travel, only the pay in full option is possible.

Program Tuition: $2,990

Pay in Full

$2,990.00

due today

Payment Plan

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

$207.50

per month

* This is an approximate price. Your exact total will be confirmed when your enrollment is processed.

All prices in United States Dollars.

Ecuador

Don’t let Ecuador’s small size fool you. Tucked between Colombia and Peru, it might be the smallest Andean nation but the country is packed with jarring contrasts of scenery and ways of life. Often called a microcosm of Latin America, the diversity in people and places is truly astounding and makes Ecuador a delight to visit.  Whether trekking through dense Amazonian rainforest, marveling at the majesty of massive snow-capped peaks, exploring colorful highland markets or navigating Quito’s historic colonial district, our programs will show you the many sides of this captivating country.

Cultural Journeys

Cultural Journeys

Cultural Journeys allow travelers to gain insights into the heritage, history and modern realities of their destination by offering a broad diversity of experience. We rely on the expertise of our local staff to plan itineraries which not only explore the prominent sites but also make time for the lesser-known local gems and are intentional about regular interaction with local people.

Program Highlights


Check out some of the featured experiences of your program!

Have the adventure of a lifetime with your friends

Snorkel with marine life in Isabela

Practice your Spanish language skills with locals

Relax and unwind on picturesque white sand beaches

Get your adrenaline fix on a zipline tour before relaxing in natural hot springs

Explore el centro historico de Quito

The Itinerary


We do everything possible to run safe, engaging, and immersive programs for our travelers and given the unpredictable nature of international travel we must remain flexible in our planning. Changes to a schedule are uncommon but, we reserve the right to adjust programming in the best interest of the group. 

DayLocationDescriptionLodging
April 13USA - QuitoToday we will depart Boston in the early afternoon and arrive to Quito late at night. We will head straight to our Quito hotel for a late dinner (for those who are hungry) and a good night's rest. Hotel San Francisco de Quito
April 14Quito - PapallactaToday we will pack up and drive for an hour and a half to the Museo Intiñan, where we will get a guided tour to learn about native tribes of Ecuador and visit the "Mitad del Mundo," right on the equator. After having lunch, we will drive for another hour an a half to our hotel in Papallacta, where we will have the chance to relax in natural hot springs surrounded by volcanoes and Andean valleys. After dinner we will have our Big Orientation meeting to prepare for the adventure ahead.Hotel Las Termas de Papallacta
April 15Papallacta - QuitoAfter breakfast, we will have a chance to enjoy the hot springs one last time or go on a hike before heading back to Quito. We will drive a couple of hours driving to the historic center of the city where we will have lunch. After settling into our hotel, we will take a guided walking tour of the centro historico of Quito. We will learn more about the capital city the various powers who have occupied the nation's capital. In the evening, we will return to our hotel to prepare for our travel to Las Islas Galapagos! Hotel San Francisco de Quito
April 16Quito - Santa CruzToday we fly 600 miles over the Pacific Ocean to reach the Galapagos Islands. After landing in Baltra, we will take a ferry across the Itabaca Channel and experience a variety of ecosystems. We'll stop to enjoy the breathtaking views of Los Gemelos, or the "Twin Craters," as well as explore the island's underbelly in the lava tunnels, as we drive to Puerto Ayora. We'll stop for lunch at El Chato Ranch, where we will have our first of many delicious meals on the islands and see our first of glimpse of Giant Toroises in their natural habitat. Upon arrival to the port, we'll check into our hotel and have an orientation meeting to discuss the upcoming trip in detail. Dinner in town tonight.North Seymour Hostel
April 17Santa CruzIn the morning we will visit the Charles Darwin Research Station, where we will learn directly from researchers about the islands' unique wildlife and the threats it face. We'll see land iguanas, lava lizards, and several species of giant tortoise. If we're lucky, we may get to see behind the scenes of this word famous research institute and admire special biological collections. In the afternoon we will have some time to cool off in the swimming holes at Las Grietas or on the beach at Playa Aleman, both a short water taxi ride from the port. Dinner this evening will be in Puerto Ayora.North Seymour Hostel
April 18Santa Cruz - IsabellaThis morning we'll take a speedboat over to Isabela Island, settle into our hotel, and have lunch in the seaside port town of Villamil. After lunch, we'll rent mountain bikes and explore The Wall of Tears, a relic of the island's prison history, then playa de amor- where marine iguanas breed- and a mirador for an amazing panoramic view of the island.Hostal La Loja Isabella
April 19Isabella - Santa CruzThis morning we'll grab our gear and go snorkeling at Concha de Perla, a stunning lagoon where we'll have a chance to see marine iguanas in their preferred habitat, schools of fish, sting rays and much more! After lunch we will head back to Santa Cruz where we will have time to do some last minute souvenir shopping and have our final dinner in the islands. North Seymour Hostel
April 20Santa Cruz - OtovaloWe'll make our return journey from the islands to the mountainous region of Ecuador. After arriving in Quito, we will drive for about two hours to Otovalo. In the evening will have our final reflection meeting and will have time to relax at the hotel after our long journey from the islands.La Posada de Quinde
April 21OtovaloAfter having breakfast in the breathtaking mountains and valleys of Otavalo, we will hike to the Peguche waterfall. We will spend the rest of day learning firsthand about Ecuadorian/Andean culture (music, dress, and cuisine). First, we'll see a presentation from local expert musicians while we enjoy a Pachamanca meal, a culinary technique that involves cooking ingredients with firewood and hot stones in a hole in the ground. We'll finish the day with some shopping at the Plaza de los Ponchos, one of Latin America's most famous artisan markets. After our final dinner in Ecuador, we will drive for two hours to the airport to catch our flight that departs shortly after midnight. Airplane
April 22Otovalo - USAThe group will spend the day traveling back to the US.Your own bed eventually!

Accommodations


In order to provide a safe and memorable experience, we follow strict guidelines when choosing program accommodations. Walking Tree partners with hotels and guest houses which are centrally located, clean and safe.  We vet and inspect the accommodations to ensure they uphold the ethos of our programs, are great values for our travelers and nice places to rest after enriching days of travel.  

Below are the accommodations we anticipate using on your trip, subject to availability. 
Hotel San Francisco de Quito

Step back in time and enjoy the beautiful accommodations of the Hotel San Francisco de Quito. Located in the heart of the historic center of Quito, one of the most well preserved colonial districts in all of Latin America, this unique hotel combines comfort with centuries of colonial history to provide its guests with an unforgettable stay.

Las Termas de Papallacta

Las Termas de Papallacta is a lovely 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 is an idyllic experience.

North Seymour Hostel

Hostal North Seymour offers accommodations in Puerto Ayora in Santa Cruz Island.  Each room at this hostel is air conditioned and features a flat-screen TV with cable channels. A terrace or patio are featured in certain rooms. Rooms have a private bathroom fitted with a bath or shower. The hotel also offers a shared lounge, a hot tub and a sun terrace. Free WiFi is available throughout the property. Students will be grouped in their rooms according to gender.

Hotel Loja Isabela

 Hotel Loja Isabela offers a charming natural environment with hammocks and is only 300 m from Puerto Villamil Beach. Hotel Loja offers comfortable rooms with private bathrooms with showers and free Wi-Fi and garden views can be enjoyed on Galápagos Islands. All rooms feature air conditioning with hot and cold water and private balconies. Loja is only 1 block from Puerto Villamil’s main street and 200 m from Galápagos National Park. Students will be grouped in their rooms according to gender.

La Posada de Quinde

Located in Otovalo, La Posada de Quinde offers rooms with a private bathroom with a shower, while some rooms have a balcony and others also feature city views. At La Posada del Quinde every room comes with bed linen and towels. The hotel also  has a garden, free private parking, a shared lounge, a terrace and a restaurant. Free WiFi is available throughout the property. Students will be grouped in their rooms according to gender.

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

Thank you for giving my son a memorable lifetime experience. [There was] constant contact with the parents with updates and photos to ensure us about the students’ safety and that they were doing well. [The Program Leader] and the teachers were outstanding. Couldn’t have had anyone else better to do the job than they have done.

Michele
Parent of Benjamin, 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. Once confirmed, you will be invoiced for the flight roughly 75 days prior to travel. 

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

 

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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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