Travel, service, experiential Learning, adventure in South America!
100% Rating
(2 Reviews)

Travel, service, experiential Learning, adventure in South America!

Travel throughout Ecuador and Peru with 12 other students as you share meals, live among different peoples, and build meaningful relationships with local people along the way. Travel from the vibrant, modern city of Quito to the Amazonian rain forest and the ancient Incan site of Machu Picchu. You’ll immerse yourself in the Spanish language while exploring and learning about richly diverse cultures and histories, build meaningful relationships with welcoming host families, partner organizations, and your fellow group members. Engage in hands on studies in sustainability and environmental conservation through service-learning projects such as conservation projects in the Amazon rainforest, organic farming in Ecuador, and community development in Peru. Relax and rejuvenate with a yoga retreat in the Sacred Valley of Peru and end your journey trekking for 5 days to Machu Picchu!

As a Carpe Diem participant, you'll not only have access to our immersive, service-based programming and stellar staff -- but you can opt to also receive up to 18 college credits (an official transcript from Portland State University) and may be eligible for financial aid. We're one of the only Gap Year providers on the market that offers these options for a nominal fee.
South America » Peru
South America » Ecuador
Program Tags
Adventure Travel
Language Immersion
Study Abroad
Volunteer Abroad
1-3 Months
6-12 Months
Host Family
Primary Language
Age Max
Starting Price
Price Details
$10,600 Program fee includes all food, accommodations, international health insurance, and scheduled program activities for the duration of the program. International airfare and spending money are extra. International airfare we estimate will cost between $1400 - $1600.

Scholarships and tuition reductions are available on a case by case basis. All students can receive a full semester of college credit from Portland State University, credits are an additional $1100 (*note, you will not be in a classroom at all!).
Other Locations
Otavalo, Arequipa, Cusco

Questions & Answers

Program Reviews

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Program Reviews (2)

Default avatar
21 years old
St. Louis, MO
Washington University in Saint Louis

More than I ever thought it would be


My experience in South America was literally life-changing. I had never been away from home longer than 2 weeks, so 3 months of traveling was a huge step. Through bouts of homesickness and illness, the Carpe leaders and administration in Portland were invaluable. More than that, the experiences I had and the growth I experienced has changed me, my priorities, and my perspective for the rest of my life. Carpe has shaped my life and impacted what I am studying and where I want to travel next, and gave me some of the best friends I have. It's rustic, sometimes dirty, there's no drinking and a lot of work, but you meet the best people and become a better person yourself. I can't recommend it enough.

How can this program be improved?

The living situations did get *very* rustic, where there wouldn't be a working shower. But again, in retrospect, that enhanced my experience.

Default avatar
24 years old
Charlotte, North Carolina

You can do it, even if you think you can't


Not once have I wanted to travel, especially for 3 months. Yet, here I am, reflecting back on my 12 week adventure through Ecuador and Peru with Carpe Diem Education. It was a roller coaster of incredible life experiences.

I traveled with 11 other students, and 2 leaders. I absolutely loved the group environment. Every one of us were so incredibly different, and yet we all clicked. Our leaders, Ryan and Cheridyn, kept us all together. I could not have survived the whole three months away from my family if it were not for their constant love, support, and encouragement. They managed to balance being our leaders and our friends.

My favorite part about Carpe Diem was the freedom that we all had, but also the structure that the program provided. I never felt like a child just following other people's lead. While we had leaders and wonderful people back home making sure everything went smoothly, we were really in charge of our trip and making the most of all of our experiences. They worked hard to not just tell us what to do, but instead they taught us how to travel ourselves. Before the trip I would not have ever considered traveling by myself, but now I can't stop thinking about where I will go next.

The Peruvian Amazon was my favorite location, but Cusco was also incredible. I can think of amazing things from every location we visited, especially Machu Picchu (the 5 day hike was a little rough, but worth it).

I cannot say enough good things about Carpe Diem Education and the wonderful families we met throughout our trip.

How can this program be improved?

Homestays were not my favorite, especially since we were only with the families for 1-2 weeks. It was hard to really get to know them.

About The Provider


Our programs are designed to safely challenge every student. Through service, travel, community and cultural exchange – our students receive a unique and personal insight into themselves and the cultures they live within. Our Overseas Educators are trained to facilitate personal growth and learning within