Ecuador Impact Expedition

Ecuador’s jaw-dropping terrain sets the scene for some incredible adventures. Discover the unique local culture living and working alongside rural communities in the Amazon rainforest and high in the Andes.

  • Location Ecuador, South America
  • Duration 3 weeks
  • Expedition Type Impact

Ecuador is a relatively small country but it certainly packs a punch. You’ll get to experience the warm and vibrant culture of this Latin American treasure, whilst living alongside a rural communities and working together on vital community projects. To top it all of, you’ll have the incredible opportunity to discover the magic of scuba diving – undertaking your PADI Open Water qualification in warm tropical waters.

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A fully supported expedition, from start to finish

Your expedition cost is comprehensive and covers the incredible activities you’ll be taking part in, as well as the extensive support you’ll receive in the lead up to, and during, your expedition.

Don’t forget you’ll also need your vaccinations, visas, kit and some spending money. You can find guidance on all of these on your personal Traveller Gateway once you sign up.

  • Expedition Leader
  • All meals in camp
  • Unlimited drinking water
  • Accommodation
  • Local Transfers (excluding to and from Australian airports)
  • Project costs and management
  • 24 hour support throughout expedition

This sample itinerary will give you an insight into what you’ll be getting up to. Please note, the exact projects, activities and camps may change closer to the time of your expedition.

Day Activities More details
Day 1 Arrive in Quito After arriving in Quito airport, you will be met by one of the Camp Ecuador team and transferred to your accommodation in the city for your first night’s stay.
Day 2 Explore Quito After breakfast you will start the journey to your first camp. On the way you will cross Ecuador’s namesake: the equator. Here you can pose for a photo standing across the northern and southern hemispheres. You will also have the chance to visit the Otavalo markets where you can practise your bartering skills whilst picking up some souvenirs! In the afternoon, you will head to your first camp, Camp Kuri Kucho. Situated in the heart of the community and in an elevated hillside position, you will experience jaw-dropping views across the valley.
Day 3 – 6 Community project work Lack of water and sanitation is an ongoing problem for the community of Kuri Kucho. Over the next few days you will be getting stuck into project work designed to improve the quality of life for the local people such as building reliable water systems and toilets.
Day 7 Transfer to Camp Donbiki Today you will transfer to Camp Donbiki. Located next to the Arajuno river, there is plenty of opportunity to spot all manners of wildlife. Once you are settled you will receive a full briefing from the Camp Manager on what to expect over the coming days.
Day 8 – 11 Environmental project work Over the next few days, you’ll be getting your hands dirty and making a real difference to the surrounding rainforest. Our work in the amazon focuses largely on reforestation and environmental protection. You’ll be getting involved in projects such as seed collection, forest restoration and learning about forest types and ethnobotany. In the evenings, you will get a chance to relax, play soccer, learning some basic phrases in Kichwa and cook some local delicacies such as maito and palmito.
Day 12 Jungle trek to Camp Chilli Urku Today you will leave Camp Donbiki and trek to your next camp, Camp Chilli Urku. Situated in a remote area of the rainforest, you will trek for a couple of hours through the jungle to reach this off-grid area where you will experience true jungle living.
Day 13 – 14 Community projects You will be getting stuck into a variety of community and environmental projects such as local school improvements, renovating the community centre and planting endemic plants at the nursery.
Day 15 – 16 Transfer to Camp Costa After breakfast you will start the 2-day journey to Camp Costa. There will be an overnight stop over in the town of Riobamba. On arrival at Camp Costa, you will be met by the Camp Manager who will give you an arrival briefing and tour. The camp is set within a sleepy fishing village along the Ecuadorian coast. The beach is only a short walk away and here you can kick back and relax after your
Day 17 – 20 Community project work Over the next few days you’ll be getting stuck into community project work such as building a community and children’s centre or helping in the community organic garden. You’ll also get the chance to visit the local coffee roasting factory where you will learn the process of making coffee beans.
Day 21 Transfer to Guayaquil After wrapping up your project work in the morning, you will transfer to the city of Guayaquil. Here you will have the chance to explore the city before heading to your accommodation for the night.
Departure Today you will say your final goodbyes to the Camps team before you head to the airport in time for your flight home.

How you’ll make a difference

You’ll work on a range of projects throughout your expedition, each aligned to the UN Sustainable Development Goals and designed to make a significant and lasting impact on the region’s most critical issues.

Rainforest regeneration

Ecuador – Amazon rainforest regeneration

As the communities in the Amazon develop, deforestation of this important rainforest is increasing at an alarming rate. You’ll work alongside local people to understand the complex relationship between the environment and community development and you’ll assist with important environmental projects, collecting saplings and replanting trees in the jungle.

There are also some community infrastructure projects building toilets and sanitation for local houses in the village and a community centre as well as keeping up the maintenance of the local school.

UN Sustainable Development Goals
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Quality education

Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all

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Gender equality

Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls

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Clean water and sanitation

Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all

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Climate action

Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts

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Life on land

Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss

Community development and environmental protection

Ecuador – Community development and environmental protection

You’ll be working on a number of projects to develop community infrastructure, such as constructing a neighbourhood recreational area or improving infrastructure at a local high school. You’ll also help to tackle the issue of waste in the natural environment, by participating in beach clean ups and working on rubbish management projects.

UN Sustainable Development Goals
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No poverty

End poverty in all its forms everywhere

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Quality education

Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all

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Gender equality

Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls

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Clean water and sanitation

Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all

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Climate action

Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts

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Life below water

Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development

Experience the local way of life in our authentic camps

Our camps are the heart of our expeditions. Built and staffed by locals in the traditional style, and located within the heart of communities, they are the perfect place to relax after a day of project work. You’ll get to stay in a number of camps during your expedition, which could include those featured below.

Camp Chilli Urku

Camp Chilli Urku

Experience true off-grid lifestyle in Camp Chilli Urku. Situated in a remote area of the rainforest, surrounded by endless green, you will truly feel at one with nature as you fall asleep in your hammock listening to the sounds of the rainforest.

  • Location: In the Arajuno area of the Pastaza province
  • Accommodation style: Hammocks under grassed roofed open sided buildings
  • Bed type: Hammock
  • Toilets: Flushing
  • Showers: Cold bucket
  • Power: There is no power in the camp but we have solar lights charging every morning
  • Social area: Big dining room and open space to enjoy incredible views of the rainforest
  • Signature dish: Maito de tilapia or Maito de pollo – Fish or chicken cooked inside a banana leaf with palmito (roots of a type of palm) and yuca (root veg) and rice.
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Camp Costa

Camp Costa is a wonderful camp set within a sleepy fishing village along the Ecuadorian coast. Only a short walk away (300m) you’ll find a quiet golden sand beach overlooking the warm and sunny Pacific Ocean. Here you can kick back, look out to sea and you may be lucky enough to spot dolphins, sea lions and even humpback whales cruising past.

The camp is located within the village where the locals are so friendly and welcoming that it will become your home away from home in no time. The football pitch is next door so you can challenge some of the locals to a friendly game after a hard day’s project work.

  • Location: 160 km (4 hours drive) from Guayaquil International Airport
  • Accommodation style: Rooms in a converted community centre & tents
  • Bed type: Comfy mattresses & sheets
  • Toilets: Flushing toilets & composting toilets
  • Showers: Cold showers & sinks
  • Power: Mains electricity. US standard plug
  • Social area: Open sided chill out space with hammocks, volleyball court & football pitch.
  • Signature dish: Fried fish & patacones (fried plantain)
Camp Kuri Kuchu

Camp Kuri Kuchu

Kuri Kucho is our highest altitude camp in Ecuador, sitting 3,300 metres above sea level. Its elevated hillside position offers you the most jaw-dropping views of the dramatic highland surroundings. The views across the valley to the glaciated Cayambe (5,790m) are not to be missed and on a clear day you may also catch a glimpse of Antisa.

The camp itself is situated in the heart of this widespread community and it’s not uncommon to see children passing by the camp on horseback on the way to school. Accommodation is made out of ecological materials where possible, making this a very unique and environmentally friendly camp full of rustic charm.

You are also only 40 minutes drive from Otavalo, Ecuador’s most famous indigenous market where you can grab all sorts of handicraft bargains.

  • Location: 75 km (2 hours drive) from Quito International Airport
  • Accommodation style: Eco houses
  • Bed type: comfy mattresses & sheets
  • Toilets: Flushing toilets
  • Showers: Hot water bucket showers & sinks
  • Power: Mains electricity only in social area. US standard plug
  • Social area: Camp fire, volleyball pitch, Otavalo visit
  • Signature dish: Cuy – guinea pig

I had an absolutely amazing time in Ecuador. The camps team in country were brilliant and I even picked up some Spanish. I met an amazing group of people, worked on some incredible projects and conservation work and have memories I’ll never forget. I’d recommend that everyone does a trip like this in their lifetime, it’s an unmissable experience. I will definitely be going back!

Aneesha, Camp Ecuador 2015

Our local camp legends

Our camps are staffed by members of the community who will make you feel like a local in no time. These legends will make your expedition spectacular and will show you the very best of their home country.

Marisol

Ecuador is a country of spectacular natural diversity, from stunning coastlines to magnificent mountain ranges offering everyone who visits us a varied experience. In our village, we are very proud to work with Camps International and to have volunteers from all over the world work with us to make a difference in our community.

Interested in this expedition?

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