Salecedo – Jan 6th
On the way to Salecedo we convinced our tour guide and leaders to go to The Swing At The Edge of the World. This was not in our itinerary but if you google bucket lists, this tourist attraction is what comes up in Ecuador!!!! It was a long 5.5 hour bus ride after the market but it was all SOO worth it.
As we drove there we were able to see Cotapaxi so clearly, the tallest and most active volcano in the world. Effie told us that what was known around here was apples, plums and pears and all about blue jeans. I was napping a lot of this drive due to a late night that was so fun with my team 😛 (shout out to Mark).
Once we got closer to the Swing in Banos, Ecuador it was so green like the amazon was. This town was called Banos meaning bath because there is volcano there that provides hot springs everywhere. I totally bet next year they will stay in this town because it was just so cute and a thrill seeking town.
As Pedro drove our bus all the way to the top of the hill on these crazy windy roads, we got to the top where the infamous swing was. It was only $1 to do this incredible experience!! There was another swing higher that was $10 but this was the first swing. We waited inline for about 20-30 mins. Once it was my turn, I had the biggest smile on my face in the entire time. How the pictures look, it looks like I am swing off the edge of the world. By the time my turn came too the cloud rolled in which evoked that feeling way more. There were a couple people that had volcanos in the back of their pictures and they look SICK!
The feelings, the experience, being on a hill top watching clouds roll in within 2 minutes of noticing them — I can see why people say to do this for a bucket list item. People were just hanging up there all day, drinking, bringing snacks, just soaking up some sun!! I would totally go back or recommend it 1000% to anyone that is looking to travel to Ecuador.
After that amazing experience that I will remember forever, we had to decide: waterfall, zip lining or the big swinging. It was just about unanimous to go zip lining at $15. Now this was DEFINITELY not in the program but we were here in Banos, in a thrill seeking area so of course Effie took us to the best zip lining spot in Banos — ZIP LINING OVER A WATERFALL!!! Now I have never been zip lining so this experience has definitely topped the charts thus far on this trip.
We were able to go over with two people so Isaac and I went together. Luckily, Tyler and Rachel were the first to go and he came back with the GoPro right before my turn so I was able to GoPro it. I NEED TO BUY A GOPRO!!!! It was an incredible experience to feel like you were flying — oh yeah, we went down the zip line in a Super Man position. It was unreal. Like writing about that moment right in this moment, seems just like a dream. Flying threw the valleys of Ecuador seeing majestic waterfalls pounding the Earth with its water melting from the volcano above, it was so magical and way too fast. The sun was starting to set a bit so the sky and clouds were glimmering with gold outlines surrounding these huge mountains.
Isaac and I made it to the side and we had to take a relatively steep and far walk back up the hill side to ZIP LINE BACK!!!! The walk made me out of breath for sure because we had to walk back up a bit to go back. The way back totally a different experience. Like I said the sun was starting to go down, the waterfall was now on my left as the river flowed down south and reflected a gold into my eyes. I GoPro-ed both ways but the second time I tried to take it all in way more. In that moment, I was flying, flying into this 2018 as an evolved, stronger, more dedicated, appreciative human being for the things I have and the things I want. Its just been way more of a personal experience than I was anticipating. It’s so beautiful here.
After everyone went, we head to Salecedo which was about 3 hours from Banos. The sunset as we left the Amazon feel of Banos. We really pushed ourselves this day. Had no lunch but snacks from a gas station since it was a little out of the way and than a late dinner at 8pm. Last year, the students had a free afternoon at Salecedo to hang by the pool and have a rest day….. . … . ……. Well, my team does not rest!!!!!!!!!! We wanted to go this, we convinced them and we are here to see and experience the culture, country — not lay by a pool that we can do anywhere at. I am a little tired into the trip but I wouldn’t trade anything that I have done for sleep. Not one bit.
We were off early in the morning for our ART DAY!! — Pujili Market, making clay sculptures and seeing a Tigua Painter. For class before we left, these two days were what I researched about and taught the class a few things before we went. It was more amazing than any pictures or presentation could tell. Just have to amerce yourself!!
- Chessa feeling better!!!! — She was able to ride the swing and zip line with us after her three ivy the other day
- Bucket list item — Swing at the edge of the world, it was simple and not as thrilling but man was the feeling being up there and the pictures worth it all
- Zip lining for my FIRST TIME — Effie couldn’t of hooked it up any more than a waterfall zip line in the Amazon-ish of Ecuador — SHOUT OUT TO THE BEST TOUR GUIDE!!!!! ❤ ❤ ❤
- Having awesome lodges to stay in — it was a two story little cottage with 5 beds in it — had a lot around the resort too like an old plane & a human see-saw
- Found those pants I thought I lost — they were in my bag HA oops, classic Erika move, think I loose something but its right in front of me
- Not staying in Banos to see some hot springs or just stay in a resort on the side of the mountains — that would be unreal
- Getting to Salcedo late and not getting any ice cream — although I eat ice cream all the time, this trip to Banos was worth loosing some ice cream over