Profile photo for Ben Westwood

Ben Westwood

I've worked as a journalist for nearly 20 years, specialising in travel. I worked on staff for the Daily Telegraph in London and have authored guidebooks for Rough Guides and Moon Handbooks. I lived in South America for over 5 years and have travelled to dozens of countries writing for British newspapers including The Guardian, The Independent and The Telegraph.

What places and activities do you specialize in?

"Ecuador, Galapagos, Peru, South America, UK and Europe.
I particularly specialise in family holidays and single parent families. "

How did you get involved in travel?

"I first started travel writing on a backpacking trip to Asia as a student. In 2000 I became a travel journalist and online travel editor at Telegraph Media Group in London. "

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"Travelling to the Galapagos islands where most wildlife has no fear of humans and you can get within meters of wild birds and lizards - that is unforgettable. "

Making a pilgrimage to Machu Picchu on one of these two treks makes your arrival even more spectacular
Salkantay Trek vs the Inca Trail: Which is Right for You?

Trekking to Machu Picchu is a dream for many travelers—but there's more than one way to get there. The classic Inca Trail lets trekkers walk in the steps of the Incas, while the more remote Salkantay route offers solitude and wildlife. Compare your options for getting to Peru's most famous place on foot, from distance and cost to overnight options.

The remarkable keel-billed toucan is among Costa Rica's 900 species of birds
Where to Spot Wildlife in Costa Rica

Costa Rica is one of the world’s most biodiverse countries, and over a quarter of its territory is protected. Use this list of recommended viewing locales for your best shot at seeing howler monkeys, humpback whales, jaguars and more.

Highlights of the Ecuadorian Coast
Highlights of the Ecuadorian Coast

Mainland Ecuador is famous for its volcanic peaks, highland markets, and jungle wildlife, but the Pacific coast has its own range of attractions that make it worthy of a visit. Explore the regenerated waterfront of the nation's biggest city, surf and sunbathe at a beach resort, or visit the largest petrified forest in South America: whatever you choose to do, Ecuador's vibrant coastline won't disappoint.

Epic Summits in Ecuador: Top 10 Peaks to Climb & Trek
Epic Summits in Ecuador: Top 10 Peaks to Climb & Trek

From glacial climbing on snow-capped Chimborazo to an easy hike up Rucu Pichincha, Ecuador offers a tantalizing range of peaks to conquer. There are mountains and volcanoes to suit all levels for climbers and trekkers alike, and Ecuador's lakes, foothills, and extinct craters offer up endless variety.

Family Travel in the Galapagos Islands
Family Travel in the Galapagos Islands

The Galapagos Islands comprise one of the world's most extraordinary travel destinations, and the opportunity to observe the famous archipelago's native creatures is especially magical for children. This guide tells you all you need to know to embark on the family adventure of a lifetime.

Quito in the foreground with an erupting Cotopaxi volcano in the distance.
How Many Days Should You Spend In Ecuador

Ecuador is a country that packs enormous diversity into a small area so it's ideal to visit for a short trip. You can spend a long weekend exploring Quito and the mountains, stay for a week venturing into the Amazon jungle or cruising the Galapagos, or spend two weeks climbing volcanoes, exploring cloud forest and enjoying adventure sports before relaxing on the Pacific beaches. Whatever your preference, use this guide to help you make the most of your visit.