Ecuador: Experience Andes & Amazon

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Journey of discovery through the small country on the equator

  • Majestic mountains of the Andes and the lush green of the Amazon lowlands
  • Learn about life and nature while visiting a village in the Ecuadorian rainforest
  • Feel at home with a host family in the Amazon
  • Look out for the wildlife of the deep green jungle
  • Bargain hunting at the Otavalo market
  • Go on an adventure in Baños
  • Relax in hot thermal springs in the Andes
  • Discover the colonial city of Cuenca

From the peaks of the Andes to the heart of the Amazon rainforest – experience an extraordinary country on this eventful tour of Ecuador. Discover the jungle by canoe and stay with a local Quechua family – a cultural experience you will never forget. Trade in the Otavalo market and soothe your weary limbs in one of the mountain hot springs. This Ecuador tour with its varied accommodation and insights into the life of the Amazon is a unique life experience.

Travel Program

Individual arrival in Quito. Arrival possible at any time. The adventure begins tonight. You have time to explore on your own – but please don’t forget to arrive in time to meet your group. In the evening, the welcome meeting takes place at the hotel, where you get to know your guide and fellow travelers. After the greeting, your tour guide will discuss all the details of the trip.

Optional Activities:
– City Tour in Quito and Equator
50-60USD per person. Enjoy a city tour in Quito, where you will see important places like the old town and the cathedral. You will also visit Mitad del Mundo, the “middle of the earth”, where you can stand with one leg each on the northern and southern hemispheres.

– Teleférico
$8 per person. Enjoy spectacular views of Quito from this aerial tramway that ascends the Volcán Pichincha. You can take a hike to the top or just enjoy the ride.

Accommodation: Hotel Eugenia (or similar)

Overnight hotel (-/-/-)

Drive to Baños. Many outdoor activities await you here, such as hiking, horseback riding, ziplining or canyoning.

Optional Activities:
– Horseback riding
25USD per person. Saddle up and explore Baño’s scenic countryside on horseback. Experience the unique vegetation of this region and, if you wish, trot over to Tungurahua Volcano for a breathtaking view.

– Visit to hot springs
$20 per person. Soothe tired muscles in the thermal springs that Baños is famous for. Visit the hot springs at the base of Tungurahua (Quichua for “little hell”) volcano, or soak in one of the meltwater baths on Tungurahua’s glaciated flanks. Rise before sunrise and watch the sun’s first rays peek behind the mountain peaks as you relax in the warm waters. Getting up early was definitely worth it!

– Baños Canyoning
Bounce, slide, rappel and swim your way down the Rio Blanco on this canyoning adventure, taking in the natural beauty en route to the heart of Llanganates National Park.

– Baños – Zipline Bundle
Strap on your seatbelt, put on your helmet and zip line down a 850 meter deep gorge surrounded by breathtaking scenery. Overcome your fear of heights as you cross the Tibetano Suspension Bridge over the Pastaza River. Climb to a second zipline to end this adrenaline-pumping adventure.

Driving time: approx. 4 hours

Accommodation: Hotel La Floresta (or similar)

Overnight hotel (B/-/-)

Enjoy some free time to discover everything this adventurous city has to offer.

Optional Activities:
– Hike
Embark on breathtaking hikes in the mountains – Baños offers the perfect setting for outdoor adventures.

– Horse riding
25USD per person. Saddle up and explore Baño’s scenic countryside on horseback. Experience the unique vegetation of this region and, if you wish, trot over to Tungurahua Volcano for a breathtaking view.

– mountain biking
$10 per person. Explore the fantastic landscape around Baños on two wheels. Depending on the route, you will pass mountains, rivers, waterfalls and constantly changing vegetation. Enjoy the refreshing headwind on downhill passages, but don’t forget the sunscreen – the sun can be pretty strong here.

– Hot Springs
$20 per person. Soothe tired muscles in the thermal springs that Baños is famous for. Visit the hot springs at the base of Tungurahua (Quichua for “little hell”) volcano, or soak in one of the meltwater baths on Tungurahua’s glaciated flanks. Rise before sunrise and watch the sun’s first rays peek behind the mountain peaks as you relax in the warm waters. Getting up early was definitely worth it!

– White Water Rafting
70USD per person. Conquer the rapids in the adrenaline capital of Ecuador. Choose a river that matches your level of experience; Different levels of difficulty are available. Enjoy the breathtaking Andean landscape and a fun ride!

– Baños Canyoning
Bounce, slide, rappel and swim your way down the Rio Blanco on this canyoning adventure, taking in the natural beauty en route to the heart of Llanganates National Park.

– Baños – Zipline Bundle
Strap on, don your helmet and zipline down an 850m deep gorge surrounded by breathtaking scenery. Overcome your fear of heights as you cross the Tibetano Suspension Bridge over the Pastaza River. Climb to a second zipline to end this adrenaline-pumping adventure.

Accommodation: Hotel La Floresta (or similar)

Drive down into the Amazon Rainforest area. Note the dramatic change in scenery as you descend from the mountains into the lush, tropical Amazon rainforest.
You’ll stay with a Quichua family, experience the hospitality of these wonderful people and experience life in the jungle on your own skin. This homestay in the Ecuadorian Amazon near Rio Napo will introduce you to traditional ways of thinking and living. You will stay with a Quechua family near the municipality of Cando. They have already given many visitors an insight into their completely different way of life, which lets you see life from a new perspective. Here you can take part in many great activities. Hike through the rainforest, bathe under waterfalls and learn how to use tropical plants. Visit a shaman, experience indigenous traditions, and learn about Quechua history and culture.

Optional Activities:
– White Water Rafting
65USD per person. Take to the rapids of the Amazon rainforest and have the adventure of a lifetime! Enjoy breathtaking scenery as you paddle past rainforests on this wild ride.

Driving time: approx. 4 hours

Accommodation: Cabanas Pimpilala

Overnight Hotel (B/-/D)

On this day we have enough time in the Ecuadorian Amazon to learn more about the life of the locals in the jungle. Enjoy nature walks and sightseeing with the local shaman.

Optional Activities:
– Visit to AmaZOOnico Animal Sanctuary
25USD per person. Guided tour of the AmaZOOnico rescue and reintroduction center. Animals that have fallen victim to the illegal trade are housed here and, if possible, released into the nature reserve. Experience big cats and reptiles up close and learn more about the work of the sanctuary.

– Wildwater Rafting
$65 per person. Take to the rapids of the Amazon rainforest and have the adventure of a lifetime! Enjoy breathtaking scenery as you paddle past rainforests on this wild ride.

– Guided waterfall hike
Make your way through the jungle, learn about the lush greenery that surrounds you and the insects and animals that live here. Hike to a series of waterfalls, strap on a harness, and climb to the top for a beautiful view.

Accommodation: Cabanas Pimpilala

Overnight hotel (B/L/D)

We cycle to the nearby village of Shandia and discover the beauty of the Amazon with a local youth as our guide (approx. 1.5 hours cycling with stops). The indigenous village of Shandia is located in the middle of the Amazon. With the support of the Planeterra organization, new cultural tours led by young people have been developed in the village. These cultural tours are a way for the community to preserve their native culture and secure a future. They provide economic opportunities for young people who would otherwise have left the village to look for work elsewhere. You leave Shandia knowing that your visit has helped open up new opportunities for the young generation in the village and preserve their traditional culture.

Afterwards we travel to Papallacta by local bus and can relax in the mineral natural thermal pools.

Activities Included:
– Shandia Community Experience & Bike Tour

Accommodation: Termas de Papallacta

Overnight hotel (B/-/-)

Enjoy a relaxing morning at the thermal springs. Dive into the wonderfully warm water and let the natural mineral water pamper your muscles. Then it’s back to Quito, where you have free time to explore on your own.

Activities included:
– Visit to the thermal springs of Papallacta

Driving time: approx. 1.5 hours

Accommodation: Hotel Eugenia (or similar)

Overnight hotel (B/-/-)

We visit the famous handicraft market in Otavalo. Discover fascinating local art, tapestries and textiles at Otavalo’s famous craft market, the largest of its kind in South America. Meet local artists at the various market stalls and pick up absolutely unique souvenirs. For the best bargains, get there early (the market starts at sunrise) and haggle a little – it’s expected with any purchase, too. (If you bargain well, you should be able to reduce the starting price by at least 20%.)

Optional activities:
– Peguche waterfall visit
Visit the famous Peguche Waterfall in the beautiful Bosque Protector Cascada de Peguche Forest Reserve. Enjoy the beauty of this natural wonder, which is also a sacred site for the indigenous people who perform their ceremonial baths here.

– Visit to Cotacachi
Visit the mountain town of Cotacachi, known for its leather goods and handicrafts. Stroll the streets of this quaint town and watch artisans create leather goods by hand. Experience local life and don’t forget to pick up some goods and souvenirs.

Activities included:
– Visit to the craft market in Otavalo

Driving time: approx. 2 hours

Accommodation: Hotel Santa Fe (or similar)

Overnight hotel (B/-/-)

Travel by bus to Cotopaxi National Park. Opt to visit an elevated lagoon or hike or mountain bike in the national park with Cotopaxi Volcano as a backdrop.

Driving time: approx. 4 hours

Accommodation: Tierra del Volcan (or similar)

Overnight hotel (B/-/-)

In the morning we visit the Cotopaxi National Park, where the 5,897 m high Cotopaxi Volcano is located. This beautiful, conical, snow-capped volcano is Ecuador’s second highest mountain and the highest active volcano in the world. Keep an eye out for wildlife that live in the park such as condors, foxes, deer, spectacled bears and more. For those who want to hike, there are several options to choose from (weather permitting). Please make sure you have suitable hiking shoes or boots, a waterproof and windproof jacket, and warm hats and gloves. The hike takes about 1.5 hours.

Afterwards we travel on to Cuenca. Along the way, enjoy a packed lunch at a viewpoint overlooking the Andes.

Activities included:
Visit to Cotopaxi National Park

Driving time: approx. 7 hours

Accommodation: Hotel La Casona (or similar)

Overnight hotel (B/L/-)

This morning we embark on a half-day city tour of Cuenca. Explore this stunning colonial city with a local guide. You will visit the Turi viewpoint, a Panama hat factory and the historic center. Find out for yourself why this city deserves the title of a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Spend the rest of the afternoon exploring or in one of Cuenca’s many cafes.

Activities included:
Cuenca city tour

Accommodation: Hotel La Casona

Overnight Hotel (B/-/-)

This day is free for you to explore on your own. Visit the city’s attractions including cobblestone streets, red-tiled roofs, art galleries, flower markets, shady squares and museums. Optionally, you can take part in a trip to the Cajas National Park and go on a nice hike there.

Optional Activities:
– Visit to Ingapirca
Ruins 50USD per person. Visit the Inca ruins of Ingapirca, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The site is about an hour and a half drive north of Cuenca and the drive takes in some of the most beautiful scenery in Ecuador. Despite being an important Inca site, little is known about its history.

– Visit to the Cajas National Park
50USD per person. From Cuenca you take a trip to the Cajas National Park. Explore this nature’s playground with its stunning scenery, wildlife and excellent hiking areas. The rather challenging terrain is mostly over 4000 m altitude in the Páramos (grassy highlands), with many clear lakes. Embark on one of the many hikes in this 28,000 hectare park and keep an eye out for tiger cats, wild llamas, cougars, and a variety of birds including toucans.

– Cuenca Mud Bath and Hot Springs
30USD per person. Smear volcanic mud on your face and body and relax in the natural hot springs.

– Day trip to Gualaceo and Chordeleg
$55 per person. Explore the countryside around Cuenca, visiting nearby places known for handicrafts, weaving and textiles. Learn about the weaving process and buy a scarf, guitar or straw hat directly from the people who make them.

– Cuenca
City Tour 20USD per person. Explore this stunning colonial city with a local guide. Visit Calderon Park, the New and Old Cathedrals, the Flower Market, the City Museum and the Museum of Modern Art. Find out for yourself why this city deserves the title of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Accommodation: Hotel La Casona

Overnight hotel (B/-/-)

Fly back to Quito where you can enjoy the night in this historic city.

Accommodation: Hotel Eugenia (or similar)

Overnight hotel (B/-/-)

Our journey together ends after breakfast. You can leave at any time.

Overnight hotel (B/-/-)

Included meals: B=breakfast; L=lunch; D=dinner

What's Included

Services included in the prices:

  • Ecuador round trip according to program
  • Transport, accommodation and meals according to the program
  • Domestic flight Cuenca – Quito
  • Excursions, activities and visits as per itinerary
  • Stay and activities in the Amazon jungle
  • Visit Banos
  • Excursion to Otavalo Market
  • Visit to the thermal springs in Papallacta
  • Visit to the Cotopaxi National Park
  • Sightseeing tour in Cuenca

Not included:

  • Meals and drinks not mentioned
  • Optional excursions and activities
  • Personal expenses, tips

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» Additional dates available upon request
» Rates may vary from July 26th to 31th for the national holidays

Prices (per person):

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Deposit for reservations: — USD (– EUR) ✓ Full payment 40 days before. No refund if you cancel less than 30 days!

Places: 🟢 *Available
Trip-code: Number ►ECU-
Duration: 14 days
Participants: Minimal: 4 Maximal: 12
Members: We don’t have an open group to join – We can open a new group – Contact us!
Country / Location: Ecuador
Mountain Guide: Eric Albino Lliuya
Other dates / additional info: Contact us!

3% early bird discount when booking 6 months prior to departure 2023

Legend Booking-information:
EZZ Single room supplement
🟢 On this trip, places are still available.
🟡 On this trip, only a few places left.
🔴 This trip is sold out / closed.

eric

Eric Raul Albino Lliuya

Expert guide certified by AGOMP
General Sales Manager of Peru Expeditions

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