CELTA in Ecuador

There are various routes to becoming a qualified teacher of English. TEFL is a very popular certification and very flexible in the types of courses available. We decided to do the CELTA, which is the Certificate in English Language Teaching for Adults awarded by Cambridge University. It seemed to us the most widely recognised and reputable qualification, which we felt would prepare us well for teaching.

The CELTA course is offered in loads of different schools all over the world. We did our research and decided to go with one in Montañita in Ecuador, simply called ‘Celta in Ecuador‘. It had raving reviews and it was recommended by a friend who did the course the previous year. It also has a good reputation being accredited to The British School of Language and International House. CELTA in Ecuador is a 5 week course, rather than the standard 4 weeks offered by most schools. It’s also in a beautiful location, 10 mins walk from the beach and from the chilled out surf town of Montañita. It’s a residential course so you live, study and teach all on the same site, which is called Casa Cacique. There were 12 of us on the course and we each had our own private cabaña, complete with hammock chair on our porch! We also had our own pool in the middle of a lovely garden with butterflies and hummingbirds, as well as a few cockroaches and possums at night!

Casa Cacique - our home for  the CELTA in Ecuador course.
Casa Cacique – our home for  the CELTA in Ecuador course.

Montañita is a great little town on the beach. It gets very lively at the weekends, when the clubs open and the bars spring up along Cocktail Alley. We very quickly made friends with our students who worked in the shops, bars and surf schools in the town. It was great to know the locals and feel a part of the town, rather than just another gringo passing through.

Montañita beach - location of CELTA in Ecuador.
Montañita beach – location of CELTA in Ecuador.

At Casa Cacique, we were also very well looked after and fed. The meals were delicious, hearty and always double-carbed, which is very typical in Ecuador! The staff were all super friendly and attentive, making our lives so much easier and less stressful when the work piled up. They even took care of the cockroaches and possums for us in the middle of the night.

The actual CELTA in Ecuador course was fantastic and exceeded all our expectations. The trainers, Ben and Andy, were extremely supportive and approachable. They were very hardworking and it was clear they cared about their job and their students.  They were a lot of fun too and usually joined us on our nights out in town.

Monday-Friday, this is how our days went:

8am – Breakfast– always with delicious juice, cereals, toast, and some kind of eggs, pancakes or empanadas.

9-11am – Input session – this is where we were taught the skills and theory needed to teach.

11am-1pm – Guided Lesson planning – this is where we got help planning our lessons and discussed in more detail feedback from the previous lesson we taught.

1pm – Lunch – Always a delicious soup followed by some massive meal, usually fish/meat and rice, along with lots of vegetables, potatoes, plantain, salad, beans…etc.

5.30-7.30pm – Teaching – The students arrived and we took it in turns to teach, with 2 or 3 trainees teaching each class – the Elementary and the Intermediate.

7.30-8pm – Hot feedback – where we discussed the lessons we just taught.

8pm – Dinner.

Hard at work, CELTA Ecuador
Hard at work, CELTA Ecuador

The course is known for being very tough and a lot is expected of you in such a short amount of time. We were expected to teach on day 2, so it’s heads down straight away. Having said that, it was a lot of fun and we all found it really interesting learning about our language, how it’s learnt and how we can teach it to anyone, no matter what their first language. All the assignments and feedback you receive throughout the course are very clear and straightforward. We had 4 assignments to do, each no more than 1000 words. We had to teach 10 lessons – 2x20mins (unassessed), 6x40mins and 2x60mins. In the end, you can be awarded a Fail, Pass, Pass B or Pass A. There was a lot to learn and a lot of work to do, but we definitely found it to be manageable. To pass the course, you essentially need to be willing to work hard, do as instructed, take on board feedback and respond to it.

I would highly recommend CELTA in Ecuador to anyone. For us, it was the same price with all living costs included as it was for the course alone back in the UK. On top of that, you don’t have the added stress of commuting or having to prepare your dinner at the end of a long day etc. We usually had our evenings and one day off at the weekend free to spend on the beach or to explore the local area. It’s a really sociable atmosphere and we made some great friends, which we will definitely keep in contact with.

It was such an amazing 5 weeks living in such a beautiful place with great people. We really didn’t want to leave! But it’s really exciting to think that now we are qualified to teach English anywhere in the world. It also means we can actually stay in Ecuador and are plan to live out here is, well, going to plan! Woop!

Details of the CELTA in Ecuador course can be found on their website:


and on the CELTA in Ecuador Facebook page:



CELTA in Ecuador Team Oct-Nov 2014!
CELTA in Ecuador Team Oct-Nov 2014!

If you liked what you read, please leave a comment at the bottom of this page. Thank you! :)

17 thoughts on “CELTA in Ecuador

  1. I’m coming to Casa Cacique for my CELTA this July, 2017! I’m very excited and hopeful and I’d love to get in touch with any other trainee that will be going to Montañita on my same dates? I’m Rolando. I’m Cuban. And I’m a permanent resident in Ecuador. Looking forward to hearing from other trainees that will be taking the CELTA in July 2017!

  2. Does the school in Montenita help you find a teaching job in Equador when you’ve completed the program? Is it only young people who attend the program? What about early retiree’s who are young at heart.. and very healthy in their 50’s. Does age matter?

    1. Hi Elizabeth,
      Thanks for getting in touch. That’s fantastic that you’re considering the CELTA in Ecuador course in Montañita!
      On our course, it was mainly people in their mid-twenties and thirties, however, we did also have a lovely retired lady called Donna who who extremely welcome and fitted in no problem in our group. Anyone can do the course and you definitely shouldn’t let age stop you! You will find that the type of people who do the CELTA are generally like-minded, very open, easy-going and liberal people who will be very friendly and welcoming to anyone, regardless of age! I say, go for it! Good luck!

  3. I am so excited about having found this blog! Me and my parter are going on a 3month trip to South America at the end of the year, any advice? After that we are not sure but I am starting to find this idea of the CELTA very exciting! Do you know if only native speakers can do it or is it open to everyone? I am Spanish so not sure if it is possible or even a good idea (I guess native speakers are more likely to be hired).

    Thanks a lot!

    1. Hola Marta! That sounds very exciting! Not sure what advice I can give you for a whole continent – South America is HUGE, so you’ll have to be a little more specific, I’m afraid! Whatever you do, you’ll have a fantastic time! 🙂
      The CELTA is open to non-natives, but obviously your English must be near-native level and you must have a degree. But yes, I’d agree with you that native-English CELTA qualified teachers are more likely to be hired. And if not, they’d probably just hire a local English teacher (which is easier and often cheaper). On our course, we had Peruvians and Ecuadorians who were doing the CELTA to further their career as English teachers within their own countries.
      The CELTA is not particularly cheap, so you want to make sure that you would be able to find work afterwards. It might be worth contacting some schools (you can find a list here) and asking them if they’d be interested. Even though you’re not native-English, they might like the idea of having a ‘European’ teacher, which could be seen as a selling point for the school.
      Hope that helps!
      Buen viaje y cuidate!

    2. Hi,
      Im looking to hire a CELTA and a DELTA teacher for full time employment. would you know who might be interested? If you know of anyone please contact me. Im also looking at sending some people the the Montanita training would you recommend it?


      My email: acena-us1@msn.com

    1. Hi Sarah,
      Thanks for visiting my site.
      Yes, if you get the CELTA, you are qualified to teach anywhere in the world, including Europe. We currently have friends teaching in Italy, Spain and the UK. It’s well recognised by schools all over and regarded as one of the best teaching English qualifications you can get.
      Hope that helps. Good luck! 🙂

  4. Dear Madam/Sir

    I am Denny James an Indian. I would like to come to Ecuador for Teaching English. I am a delta holder from LTTC,London. I would like to pursue CELTA. What is the fee for this course? and how long is it? please reply me.

    1. Hi Denny, Thanks for visiting the site and getting in contact.
      I am a bit confused as to why you are asking about the CELTA? If you have the DELTA, you should already have your CELTA and have many years of experience of teaching English.
      The information I have posted on the CELTA in Ecuador page will answer your questions & you can visit the links I have put at the bottom of the page for further information about the course and up-to-date fees.
      Thanks & good luck! 🙂

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