Go where the rainforests are lush, the mountains are snow-capped, and the tortoises are—you guessed it—giant. From urban jungles to actual jungles, a trip to Ecuador and the Galápagos is unlike anything you’ve ever experienced. It’s like watching a nature documentary, but your television is nowhere to be found.
Traveler photos from Ecuador
Best trip ever in a once in a lifetime location!
“This was one of the best trips I have ever been on with EF. I thought I was going to have the best time in the Galapagos and was a little iffy about all the time spent in mainland Ecuador on the itinerary, but learned quickly how much I loved the country itself. This is a must go if you are even a little interested!”
– Allison, traveled on Ecuador & the Galapagos Mar. 2023
JUST BOOK IT!!!
“Ecuador and the Galapagos were somewhere I'd wanted to visit since I was a child but was always reluctant to travel alone, this was my first EF trip and I couldn't recommend it more!!! From Quito to Baños to the Galapagos the whole trip was beautiful and so well planned!”
– Emily, traveled on Ecuador & the Galapagos Mar. 2023
What do we do? What don’t we do?
Know before you go
It’s fun and helpful to try your hand at the local language, Spanish! Try out some of these popular words and phrases:
- Hello: Hola
- How are you? ¿Cómo estás?
- Goodbye: Adiós
- Thank you: Gracias
- Please: Por favor
- I’m (your name): Soy (your name)
- I’m from (your country of residence): Soy de (your country of residence)
- How much does this cost? Cuánto cuesta?
- Where is the...?: Dónde está...
- bathroom: el baño
- bus stop: la parada de autobús
- pharmacy: la farmacia
Locals in Ecuador are typically laid-back and easy-going. If you show common courtesy and try your hand at local customs, it can go a long way! As you prepare to spend time in a new country, here are some expert tips to help you live like a true Ecuadorian:
- Common greetings in Ecuador are a handshake and a “buenos dias” or “buenas tardes” (depending on time of day).
- When dining out, practice basic table manners - all food is eaten with a fork and knife. It’s acceptable to call over your waiter or waitress if you need their attention.
- Nightlife in Ecuador (Quito) doesn’t typically begin until 10 or 11pm. The exciting place to be is La Ronda, the historical boulevard!
- Bargaining at outdoor markets is very common practice in Ecuador. If shops or stands have marked prices, bargaining is not the norm. Prices for taxis can also be negotiable, if done politely!
You’ll sample a variety of other local dishes on your trip, but read on for all the tips, tricks, and delicacies you must try.
- Cuy: This is a specialty in Ecuador - roast guinea pig!
- Empanadas: You’ve probably heard of these tasty corn pastries stuffed with meat, cheese, or vegetables
- Ceviche: Raw seafood ‘cooked’ in lime and chili - it tastes better than it sounds!
- Fruit: The best fruits to try are cirimoya, mamey, and pepinos
- Locro: A soup of potatoes, corn, cheese, and avocado
- Canelazo: This is easily found in the colonial part in Quito and is a local drink made with sugar cane liquor and a fruit called naranjilla
- Llapingachos: Also known as cheesy potato cakes
- Chugchucaras: A platter of pork rinds, fried pork, pig’s feet, ground corn, potatoes, plantains, and more
- Guaguas de pan: Or, “bread children” - sweet pastries served with jelly - often served during Day of the Dead celebrations!
- Quinoa: The same healthy grain you see at Whole Foods… but better
- Plantains: A savory cousin of the banana, typically served on street corners!
We plan it all. And then some.
Our group trips to Ecuador come with everything included. That’s accommodations, flights (unless you wanna book your own), activities, and an expert Tour Director who won’t let you miss a blue-footed booby sighting.
Round-trip flights & airport transfers (or book ’em yourself)