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Presenter : Justine Shapiro

Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands

Justine Shapiro begins her journey in Guayaquil, Ecador’s main port and the largest city in the country. She embarks on a 9 hour train up into the Andes, to a small town called AlausiJustine Shapiro in EcuadorHere she discovers that the locals Indians are on strike in protest at recent land reforms.

From Alausi Justine heads to Banos, a spa town which lies on the edge of the Andean foothill and theAmazon jungle. She bathes in thermal baths, which are heated by the nearby volcanoes and goes biking and hiking in the Pastaza Valley.

After climbing snow-capped Cotopaxi, the highest active volcano on earth, Justine stops off in Quito, the capital of Ecuador and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. From Quito she journeys a few hours north toOtavalo, Ecuador’s most famous market town where you can buy all sorts of crafts made by the local Ottovalo Indians. Here, Snow-capped Mt. CotopaxiJustine is invited to eat guinea pig – a great delicacy of Andean cuisine dating back to pre-Inca times. She also attends the festival of San Juan (Saint John the Baptist) in the largest hacienda in Ecuador, owned by the famousPlaza family.

Justine flies into the jungle to spend a few days with theSiecoyan Indian community. During her visit she treks in the jungle, watches a traditional dance, learns the art ofcanoe making and samples a couple of the local beverages: chicha, made from yucca and fermented human spit, and Ayhuasca, a hallucinogenic drink made from the Ayhuasca vine.

Sea birdJustine concludes her trip with 6 days in the Galapagos Islandson board a magnificent sailing boat called the Angelique. The Galapagos Islands are renowned as a spectacular wildlife haven and Justine sights sea lions, penguins, frigate birds, marine iguanas, blue footed boobies, flamingoes and pelicans.

Places Mentioned - Ecuador, The Galapagos Islands

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The Galapagos Islands

South America

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