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Itinerary well planned to ensure we saw the variety of sites and cultures available in Ecuador, … read more
Marion Jones
Amazonian Indian Ecuador

Guided walking tour around best bits of Ecuador

Duration: 7 days / 6 nights
Activity Level: Moderate
Highlights: Cuicocha Crater Lake - Otavalo Market – Papallacta Hot Springs - Cotopaxi National Park - Quilotoa Lake - Baños
Itinerary: Day 1 Visit Equator line, Andean Life & Villages Hike
Day 2 Cuicocha Lake Walk, Cotacachi & Otavalo
Day 3 Papallacta Paramo Walk plus hot springs
Day 4 Cotopaxi National Park – Limpiopunga Walk
Day 5 Quilotoa Crater Lake Hike
Day 6 Smuggler's Trail to the Manto de la Novia
Day 7 Leito to Banos walk, then return to Quito

Day 1          Andean Life & Villages Hike          7km – 2.5hr          2600-2650m
We travel north from Quito, with a stop at the Quitsato Museum with its unique sun-dial, located exactly on the Equator line. We walk along the foothills of the imposingly beautiful Imbabura Volcano, passing by local farmlands & through surrounding communities, observing the everyday life of the colourful Otavaleñan people. Stunning views of the San Pablo Lake and surrounding volcanoes. Picnic lunch.
Dinner & overnight in Las Palmeras.

Day 2          Cuicocha Crater Lake          8km – 4hr          3100-3500m         
Our route takes us along the rim of the striking Cuicocha Volcano, with its captivating blue-green crater lake. Walking through Andean forest to discover orchids & bromeliads, we are also on the look-out for the endangered Andean Condor. Incredible lake views. Lunch in the leather market town of Cotacachi, and afternoon visit to the handicraft market in Otavalo.
Dinner & overnight in Las Palmeras.

Day 3          Papallacta Paramo Walk          8km – 4hrs          4000 – 3600m
Today's walk explores the beautiful glacial landscapes around Papallacta, passing mountain lagoons and discovering elfin forests where we can learn more about the distinct flora & fauna of this region. Great views. After a picnic lunch we can relax in the thermal waters of the local hot springs.
Dinner & overnight in Guango Lodge.

Day 4          Cotopaxi National Park        10km – 4hr         3800 – 4000m
Our route today is located within the Cotopaxi National Park. Beginning at the Limpiopungo lake, our walk takes us through striking Andean landscapes, in the ever-present shadow of one of the world's highest active volcanoes – the snow-capped, perfectly cone-shaped Cotopaxi. Box lunch included.
Dinner & overnight in Hacienda La Cienega.

Day 5          Quilotoa Crater Lake          5hrs          3800m
An early start this morning to drive to Quilotoa Crater lake from where we begin today's walk. We follow the rim of this stunning lagoon with its incredible blue-green waters, one of Ecuador’s most beautiful and impressive spots. Box lunch included.
Dinner & overnight in La Posada de Tigua.

Day 6         Smuggler's Trail & Pailon del Diablo     7km – 2.5hrs        1800m
This historical route, famously used in past times by rum smugglers, takes us along the dramatic Pastaza Canyon. We can enjoy great river views and vistas of the Llanganates – the remote mountains which hide, according to legend, the lost Inca gold of Atahualpa. We pass beautiful waterfalls including the breathtaking Manto de la Novia. Then continue on to visit the Pailon del Diablo waterfall with a box lunch. In the afternoon we have time to explore the pretty streets and basilica of the mountain spa town of Banos.
Dinner & overnight in Hacienda Leito.

Day 7        Leito - Banos Walk    12km – 3.5 hrs  2700 – 3050 – 1800m
Today's morning walk through cloud forests and Andean farmlands can offer spectacular views of the smoking Tungurahua Volcano and striking Pastaza Canyon. It brings us down into Banos where we lunch before beginning our return journey to Quito, where on arrival, the tour ends. We can also take care of your Quito hotel reservations and airport transfers, if you need assistance with these services please let us know.

Las Palmeras, Otavalo

Hotel-Las-Palmeras-OtavaloThis 150 year-old hacienda, with its towering palm trees and garden cottages is tucked in a lush mountain valley near Otavalo. Tile-topped earthen walls contain an ever-blooming perennial garden with hibiscus, bougainvillea, orchids, cholan, eucalyptus, avocado and black-current which attract a profusion of birds including hummingbirds and vermilion fly-catchers. The inn's thick adobe walls preserve the day's warmth for the cool mountain nights, and roaring eucalyptus log - fires provide a cozy atmosphere.

Guango Lodge, near Papallacta

Guango-Lodge-PapallactaGuango Lodge lies at an elevation of about 2,700 metres on the eastern slopes of Ecuador's Andes, just outside the town of Papallacta. The lodge is surrounded by humid temperate forest, an area with a cool climate brimming with bird and plant life. Guango Lodge offers guestrooms with private bathrooms, hot water and excellent homemade food.

Hacienda La Cienega, Cotopaxi

Hacienda-La-Cienega-CotopaxiHacienda La Cienega is a 300 year old hacienda located in the heart of the Cotopaxi region. With the current threat of eruption from Cotopaxi Volcano, please remember that La Cienega is considered to be located in a safe zone, an area which will not be directly affected by lahars in the case of an eruption. La Cienega offers spacious and comfortable, boutique style rooms with private bathrooms, lovely restaurant facilities along with extensive gardens and social areas.

La Posada de Tigua, Tigua

posada-de-tiguaThe owners of La Posada de Tigua insist to their guests that "this is your house!" They have converted their 126-year-old home into a comfortable, welcoming guesthouse, while maintaining the working dairy farm and homely atmosphere which makes the Posada so unique. Guests are invited to discover the Hacienda, walk the trails with views of the surrounding mountains, meet the animals, milk the cows then relax by the fireplace with a book and a glass of wine when the chilly evenings set in.

Hacienda Leito, near Banos

Hacienda-Leito-BanosHacienda Leito is a hotel in Patate - near Baños. It's location offers fantastic views across the valley to the Tungurahua Volcano.
The historial hacienda is located in a natural setting, offering comfortable rooms with fire places, good food and a peaceful environment perfect for contemplation.

Prices 2018

No of People Accommodation Price per person
1 single room $3290
2 double room $1900
3 - 4 double/triple room $1470

Price includes:
Private transportation, top English speaking naturalist walking guide, all accommodation as specified with breakfast, 7 lunches & 6 dinners, entrance fees to Quitsato Museum, Papallacta Hot Springs, Quilotoa Crater Lake & Pailon del Diablo, local guides at Cuicocha Crater Lake & Cotopaxi National Park.

Not included:
International flights, personal travel insurance, alcoholic and soft drinks, extra activities at the haciendas, tips and personal expenses.

Prices are stated in US Dollars.
Prices are valid until 31st December 2018.
A single supplement fee of US$180 will apply for those requesting single accommodation.
Special group rates apply for groups of 5 people or more. Please contact us for more details.
Extra nights: We recommend that you visit Quito and can help with hotel reservations and activities in the city.

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