Study Abroad in the Galápagos Islands, Ecuador

Living Abroad

AIFS Resident Director

AIFS provides a dedicated Resident Director for this program who will assist students throughout their stay in the Galápagos. Details and contact information will be available prior to the start of the summer program.

The Resident Director provides academic advice, introduces you to the community and handles communication with the University.

Housing and Meals

San Cristóbal has a population of about 6,000 inhabitants. Students will stay with a carefully selected homestay family with daily breakfast and dinner with the families included. Most of the islanders live in the port city of Puerto Baquerizo Moreno and are involved in either the tourism or fishing industries. It is a close-knit and conservative community with a rich cultural history. By staying with local families you will gain a unique insight into island life and how the locals live and work. You will receive most lunches in town or at the site of the academic visits.

Cultural Activities

Learning does not begin or end in the classroom. Visits and field trips are a key part of your academic study in the Galápagos, while social and cultural activities in Quito give you a better understanding of Ecuador, the South American country which governs the islands.

  • Welcome lunch
  • Quito historic center and Middle of the World Monument guided tour
  • Visit to El Junco, a permanent fresh water lake and where you can see frigate birds bathing in order to preen their feathers
  • La Loberia, a coral sand beach where you can see sea lions, a large colony of marine iguanas and birds
  • La Galapaguera, a man-made breeding program for tortoises and an information center for visitors. You can see giant land tortoises living in a semi-natural habitat
  • Kicker Rock, one of San Cristóbal Island’s most iconic sites and an excellent location for spotting manta rays, sea turtles and sharks
  • Frigate Bird Hill, to spot the magnificent frigate birds
  • The Interpretation Center which focuses on the history of the archipelago from its volcanic origins to the present
  • USFQ and AIFS promote conservation and sustainable tourism in the Galápagos Islands through education and research. All visits on the islands are to designated visitor sites