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The Westcoast Connection Blog

Life Changing Experiences

Our Spirits Can’t Crumble in the Amazon Jungle! – Ecuador & the Galapagos Community Service

What a great adventure! After stops in Latacunga and the Amazon rainforest, we’ve seen spider monkeys, toucans, and ocelots, climbed a volcano, and tubed down one of the Amazon’s tributaries. Hard to believe it’s only been five days since we left Quito!

Our latest adventures began in the beautiful city of Latacunga, where our hotel had a breathtaking view of the massive volcano Cotopaxi. Not content with merely looking at the volcano from afar, we climbed it the very next day and enjoyed hot chocolate from the lodge on the mountainside. Who would have guessed we’d see snow in Ecuador?

Ecuador & the Galapagos Community Service Dancing

Our community service in Latacunga was equally worthwhile. We visited a seniors’ home, and while there we did our best to help out in any way we could. We shined shoes, played games with the residents, and all of us participated in a talent show. We left the residents with big smiles on our faces and even bigger smiles on ours. We ended our stay in Latacunga in style, celebrating our last night with a camp fire and smores.

After Latacunga, our next stop was a beautiful lodge on a river in the Amazon rainforest. Almost as soon as we arrived, a group of squirrel monkeys swung through the trees just feet away us! We saw many more animals the next day – we visited an animal rehab center, which attempts to prepare poached animals for a return to the wild. Our favorite animals were the spider monkeys, which put on an incredible aerial show for us on the ropes in their cages.

Ecuador & the Galapagos Community Service at the Seniors' Home

In the rainforest, we continued our community service by helping a local community plant yucca, which is a staple of the diet of the indigenous peoples. We learned much more about such peoples when we visited the home of a member of the community, were he showed us how to brew a local tea and even how to fire a blowgun! We staged an impromptu blowgun competition, which Drew won!

We have just arrived in Baños, where we’re looking forward to many more adventures!

¡Hasta luego!

The Westcoast Blogger