Ecuador and Peru are among of the most biologically and ethnically diverse places on earth. We will spend the first week of our study abroad in Peru walking the famous Inca Trail, ending at Machu Picchu. Along the trail we will study the diverse plants and animals, the rich archaeology, and the culture and history of Peru and the Incan Empire. For a good example of the sights, sounds, people, and animals we will see on this program, you can watch this four-minute video (credit to Devin Graham, devinsupertramp): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zk9J5xnTVMA.
We will then travel to Ecuador to study the landscapes and cultures of the Amazon Forest. In the Amazon, we will study in a rainforest lodge on the Napo River (see below). We will visit villages and study the cultures of the local indigenous people and study the cultivation and making of chocolate. We will also do a three-day river adventure into the heart of the undisturbed Amazon Forest in Yasuni National Park, where we will swim with river dolphins and see dozens of species of unique mammals and birds. In all these amazing environments and rich cultural settings, you will meet the people and experience the foods, traditions, and languages of Ecuador. Food will be covered during our walk along the Inca Trail and during our three-week stay in Ecuador. The food is excellent and is shared together around large tables (Hogwarts style) in an open-air bungalow overlooking the Napo River. This study abroad would be excellent for any major on campus. To see where we will stay and the activities we will be doing in Ecuador, watch this video (credit to a student on the 2016 Pitt Study Abroad): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J3Ep6TXo-N8 and visit this web site: https://www.andes-fieldschool.org.