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Galapagos: The Ecological Expedition
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Galapagos: The Ecological Expedition

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

Amazing!

It was an amazing experience to see a part of the world I had only learned about in school. Not only were we able to see the touristy parts of each location, but we were immersed with the local people as well which really enhanced our experience.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    9

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

PVHS Ecuador/Galápagos service trip

The first three days were spent in Quito, the capital of Ecuador. There, we worked at a refuge center for impoverished children. We painted, installed astro turf, and poured concrete. We also cooked food for the kids and played soccer with them. We also toured the Old Town and were able to fully experience the culture of Quito. We visited the actual equator line and learned about the opposing ways gravity acts in the northern and southern hemispheres. In addition, we were given ample time to shop for unique, handcrafted souvenirs. The accommodations were amazing and the food was even better. The following five days were spent on the island of San Cristóbal. The accommodations and food were once again fantastic. In San Cristóbal we painted the bleachers at a soccer stadium, played soccer with local children, and planted endemic trees. We also learned a lot about the history of the Galápagos Islands and especially the flora and fauna of the islands. We visited a giant tortoise breeding facility and spent a lot of time at the beach. We also went snorkeling and were able to see sea turtles and hammerhead sharks. The animals in Galápagos are very docile, particularly the sea lions. They can be found on sidewalks and benches throughout the town. Also, all sorts of animals including sea life and birds can be found in very close proximity to humans, as the animals are not innately afraid of humans. Sea lions will even swim so close that they bump into you. For both the mainland and the Galápagos, the in-country guides were phenomenal. They all spoke English and were very knowledgable about the history of Ecuador as well as the wildlife in the Galápagos.