Connect with an indigenous culture
in the heart of the Amazon

Starting from $4,495 USD per person for 9 days | Trips depart from North America & Europe every Saturday

Trips depart from North America & Europe every Saturday

Find adventure and a warm welcome from the local Kichwa people when you enter the lush Amazon rainforest on a ME to WE Trip. Explore the endless emerald green of the jungle and be invited to a minga—a Kichwa word meaning “the coming together of people for the greater good.” Connect with Ecuador and its people at each breathtaking moment—whether it’s participating in a traditional cleansing ceremony, trekking through the rainforest or working on a sustainable development project alongside community members. When you leave, you not only bring home lasting memories but also a deep-rooted, genuine connection with a community—one that feels like family.

Trip Overview

At your accommodations at Minga Lodge, filled with all the comforts of home, relax in a hammock outside your cottage as you drink in the beautiful scenery of the Napo River and exotic sounds of the jungle.

Visit nearby communities on a jungle walk or canoe ride, led by your facilitator, and meet the families who live there. Hear the story of how Craig and Marc Kielburger, our founders, witnessed a spontaneous and powerful community movement—a minga—that inspired ME to WE.

Join community members to volunteer on a sustainable development project, such as laying bricks for a new classroom.

Meet a cacao farmer and uncover the secrets to making the most delectable Ecuadorian chocolate you’ll ever taste. Learn firsthand how cacao production is a main source of income for the region’s farmers and get your hands dirty planting, harvesting and processing cocoa beans.

Be invited to the home of a local shaman and medicine man to participate in a traditional cleansing ceremony and blessing. Plus, train with an indigenous weapons expert and master the art of throwing a spear and shooting a blowgun, two techniques that have traditionally been used for hunting in indigenous cultures.

Explore the historic center of Ecuador’s capital city of Quito as you weave through cobblestone streets and stunning Spanish architecture, and drink in the spectacular views of the surrounding hills.

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Are you interested in travelling as an individual (13-17 or 18-25), school or company?

Learn more about our Youth, University, School or Corporate Trips.

Trip Itinerary

DAY 1

  • Depart from North America and arrive in Quito
  • Meet your ME to WE facilitator before heading to your hotel

DAY 2

  • Explore Ecuador’s biodiversity on the drive into the Amazon and arrive at Minga Lodge

DAY 3

  • Meet local community members
  • Start work on an infrastructure project like a classroom, teacher’s accommodation or health clinic
  • Visit the WE Agriculture Learning Centre to discover more about our Food Pillar and learn how to make your own chocolate at the cacao farm

DAY 4

  • Experience a day in the life of a local farmer and help to carry out daily activities
  • Explore the Amazon rainforest with your local naturalist guide

DAY 5

  • Finish your work on the development project
  • Join our jungle guides for a traditional cooking lesson
  • Say goodbye to the local community
  • Experience a ceremony with a shaman, and get hands-on weapons training in the afternoon

DAY 6

  • Depart for Quito and check in to your hotel
  • Visit historic Quito

DAY 7

  • Morning flight from Quito to the Galapagos
  • Check in to your lodge for lunch
  • Explore nearby sites, such as the Charles Darwin Research Station or Santa Cruz

DAY 8

  • Rise and shine for a boat excursion!
  • Visit one of the neighboring islands

DAY 9

  • Visit Tortuga Bay
  • Relax and recharge at your lodge

DAY 10

  • Morning flight back to Quito, where you will connect for your journey home!

DAY 11

  • Arrive back home in North America

Minga Lodge

Accommodation

Your accommodations at Minga Lodge are furnished with all the comforts of home, including flush toilets, electricity and running water. A tropical hideaway designed with its environment in mind, Minga Lodge is located on the edge of the Napo River and has cabin-style accommodations perfect for any traveler, families and groups of all sizes. Delicious meals are prepared daily by our chefs to suit your dietary needs and preferences.

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Location

Begin your adventure in Quito, Ecuador’s capital high in the Andean foothills that was constructed on the foundations of an ancient Incan city. Then, take a jungle river cruise up the Rio Napo to Minga Lodge, surrounded by lush tropical flora and fauna. Here you’ll meet the Kichwa people and volunteer in local communities.

Contribute to the Story of Transformation

Every ME to WE Trip takes place in a community where our renowned partner, WE Charity, puts its over-20-year history of holistic, sustainable development work. As a traveler, you’ll have the opportunity to create real change on the ground and help improve the lives of the community members you meet.

See how ME to WE Trips are different >
Our work in Ecuador >