Spanish students take trip to Ecuador over spring break


Christina Brodell

Students were given the opportunity to travel to Ecuador over spring break as a group.

The first stop on the trip after arriving to Ecuador was Quito. The tourists learned lots about “The Middle of the Earth.” (Leila Sullivan)

From March 24 to April 1, a select number of Hinsdale Central Spanish students traveled to Ecuador with Christina Brodell, from the Spanish department. This is the school’s first ever trip to Ecuador and students loved the experience. 

The traveling group enjoyed visiting the Amazon regardless of the fact that it was pouring rain when they got there. (Leila Sullivan)

Brodell has chaperoned multiple foreign exchange trips to Spain, but this year presented a change. 

“They really leaned into the experience,” Brodell said.

Brodell began planning the trip last year with interest meetings in May and September. A total of 27 students ended up attending the trip, varying in levels of Spanish fluency. In fact, any level Spanish student was allowed to attend the trip. 

“Ecuador isn’t somewhere I would’ve thought of to travel on my own so I thought it was a very unique experience that I probably wouldn’t ever have the opportunity to go [on] again,” said Leila Sullivan, sophomore.

Before arriving in Ecuador, the group had a long layover in Miami. Here they learned about the Cuban influence on Miami’s culture while touring Little Havana. 

“My favorite part was meeting so many new people, making a lot of new friends, getting to know people I wouldn’t have met otherwise, and the scenery was beautiful everywhere we went,” Sullivan said.

When they finally arrived at their destination, the Spanish students visited various places including Quito, Banos, Puyo, and Cotopaxi. Among other things, students spent time learning about the “Middle of the Earth” (Mitad del Mundo) in Quito, doing a service project in Puyo, canopy ziplining, hiking to waterfalls, visiting mineral baths, visiting the national park of Cotopaxi, and eating traditional meals. 

“The town around Banos was really cool, we did an amazing hike where we saw the route of the waterfalls which was personally one of the coolest things I did,” Brodell said.

This trip proved to be a very valuable experience for each student who went. They were able to build upon their language skills, meet new people, gain new perspectives, and be flexible throughout the process. 

“It was very interesting to see the difference in food, clothes and other ways of life between America and Ecuador,” said Mira Cunningham, sophomore 

The tourists got to see beautiful views. (Leila Sullivan)

If you’re an underclassmen interested in this experience, these trips typically happen every two years at Central. Therefore, you should stay up to date with the world language department for possible future opportunities.