Sustainable Tourism


March 13th - 21st, 2021


El Paredon, Guatemala


Sustainable Tourism



Guatemala is well-known for its cultural sites, lakes, and and rugged volcanic landscape (we will visit these too.. don’t worry!). Its beaches and surf however, are still very much off the beaten path. This unique program will explore the opportunities and challenges related to spreading tourism from the interior to the coasts of Guatemala. We will work with a local non-profit to experience locally run turtle nesting and mangrove tours and cooking classes while learning how tourism is being leveraged for community development. We will also learn how local hotels (including our beachfront accommodations) are attempting sustainable tourism on the coast and the challenges associated with rapid growth. The added perk being, we will also be surfing daily at empty and consistent waves along a spread out volcanic beach. Sign up for two university credits in Sustainable Tourism, or you can also enroll for the experience without the credits. Either way, this program is not to be missed.



  • All In Country transportation
  • Accommodations
  • Most Meals
  • All local tours and activites
  • Course materials

Not Included

  • Airfare
  • Some meals and snacks
  • Registration Fees for units
  • Travel Insurance
  • Surfboard rentals

Mikiko Ellis

Trip Leader

Mikiko Ellis has 15 years of experience as a bilingual high school educator. She is a licensed teacher, and community and school counselor. She has traveled extensively throughout many regions of the world, served as a Peace Corps Education Volunteer in Benin, West Africa, and recently received a Fulbright Distinguished Award in Teaching granting her to research education in Chile. Mikiko currently works as a high school counselor at New Mexico School for the Arts in Santa Fe, NM. She is passionate about education as a means to make positive and lasting social change worldwide.

Sarah Hughen


Sarah Hughen was born in rural Wisconsin. Her upbringing was deeply rooted in nature, and this draw to wild places has led her all over the world.  A desire to connect, and not merely move through places found her on numerous extended expeditions including a 100 day kayak and first ascent mountaineering trip in Southern Patagonia, a 90 day paddle across Northern Canada, and a photography expedition down the Mackenzie River for 1,000 miles documenting local villages in the Arctic.  Sarah received a formal Degree in photography from Montana State, and currently lives in Cardiff-by-the-Sea with her husband of 20 years and two young boys Oliver and Evan. Living in Cardiff Sarah made a deep connection to the wilderness and lessons that surfing brings, and is hopelessly addicted. Her most recent project (A Wave A Day) involved an awareness campaign for breast cancer in which she vowed to surf every single day for a year, and document her inspiring personal challenge. Founding SeaState is a natural extension of Sarah’s immense field experience and deep rooted passion for responsible travel and the life altering experiences it can bring for all.