Where There Be Dragonshttp://www.wheretherebedragons.com/program...
3200 Carbon Place Unit 102 Boulder, Colorado 80301 United States
Bolivia: Cochabamba, La Paz, Rural Areas
June 28 - July 27
The Andes and Amazon region of Bolivia is defined by breathtaking contrasts and unimaginable cultural and natural beauty. Diving from the snowcapped peaks of the Andes, over twenty thousand feet to the steamy lush canopy of the Amazon rainforest, the region challenges and inspires travelers to expose themselves to the wisdom and strength of their surroundings. In isolated valleys of the Andean highlands, we partake in the profound joy and simple grace that characterizes communal life amongst the Quechua and Aymara cultures while introducing cultural ecological relations and studying Spanish Language. Moving to the colonial city of La Paz we meet with political and NGO leaders, turning our attention to critical challenges and valiant strategies for community development and political representation. Heading out of the mountains we open seldom trodden pathways to the Amazon, learning about the majesty of this unique ecosystem and the compelling need for sustainable cultural and environmental conservation strategies before settling back into La Paz to conclude our epic adventure. Our journey takes us to the mountains and forests that make up the maps edge, highlighting unparalleled trekking and wilderness exploration, rural home-stays, examination of indigenous rights, and the opportunity to hone Spanish Language skills.
Following is a sample itinerary for Dragons Bolivia: Culture and Ecology 4-Week Summer Abroad Program. Our sample itineraries are based on past courses; in order to meet instructor team goals, as well as the goals and interests of particular student groups, future itineraries are subject to change.
First Few Days: Traveling from Miami we cross the Caribbean and Amazon before dropping into the mountains of La Paz, the highest capital city on earth at over 12,000 feet and stunningly surrounded by 20,000 foot glaciated peaks. But we won’t linger long this time (don’t worry, we’ll come back!) and instead continue to a retreat nestled in the mountains outside of Cochabamba, at a lower altitude and more pleasant climate for our course orientation. Here we will begin to form as a group, learn important cultural norms and build skills to successfully navigate this new environment. We may culminate this time with a hike of the nearby Cerro Tunari, the highest peak around Cochabamba at over 16,000 feet.
Weeks one and two: After orientation we will begin our homestays, Spanish classes and independent study projects in Cochabamba. We will settle into Tiquipaya, a Quechua farming neighborhood outside of the city proper and begin to get to know our new home and host families. Days will be defined by our Spanish study, independent study projects and series of workshops and guest speakers in and around Cochabamba. We will gain a greater perspective on the place and begin to confidently navigate this new environment. In addition we will give special attention to activism and advocacy and what they can teach us in terms of self-directed leadership.
Week three and four: Trek. Completing our time in Cochabamba, we head up into the mountains near La Paz to contrast the urban time. Along the pre-hispanic Yunga Cruz trail we find soaring peaks, vast wilderness transitioning from barren alpine terrain to low jungle and cloud forest, passing agrarian communities as we go. Each day we learn more about each other and ourselves through the physical challenges of hiking through some of the highest mountains in the world. We will focus on leadership, navigation and other backcountry skills during our trekking time.
Final Days: Completing our rewarding trek, we will settle into a retreat and environmental learning center in the coca growing community of Chulumani for the final days of the course and look at our challenges, successes and important points of learning and growth. Reflecting on where our journey has taken us we take time to articulate and focus on the lessons that we will transfer to our lives back home.
Please visit our website for details
Tuition includes everything except international flight medical insurance and small personal expenses (personal calls home personal snacks aside from meals laundry services, email/internet cafes, etc.)
American, European, Canadian, Australian, South African, Kiwi, Worldwide and Asian Participants.
Dragons programs are authentic, rugged and profound learning adventures that expose the beautiful and complex realities of the countries in which we travel. Featuring extended itineraries, Dragons programs encourage deep immersion into strikingly different physical and cultural landscapes, combining the best in experiential education, travel, service learning, and physically and intellectually challenging experiences. While programs vary in their focus - with some trekking and wilderness intensive, others strong on service and development studies, and still others language-oriented - all Dragons journeys are designed above all else to be fun, safe and honest educational experiences.