Spend 6 days getting to know the wild and beautiful geography of Ecuador! As a bonus, your trip is eco-tourism friendly and promotes sustainability in local communities.
Discover the fascinating geography of Ecuador’s active volcanoes, big canyons, large tropical rainforests and huge waterfalls. Enjoy trekking into the Quilotoa crater lake and biking down the slopes of the active Tungurahua volcano. Explore the luscious Amazon forest by rafting on the Jatunyacu River, and much more on this unforgettable adventure full of unique experiences.
Day 1: Quito
Quito, the largest, best-preserved colonial city of America, was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1978, and is considered the Cultural Capital of South America. It was also one of the most important cities of the old Inca Empire.
Our first day is day for information and acclimation. Depending on when you arrive, you may have time to explore the town and its surrounding area. If this is the case, we can help you organize a day trip. In the evening, one of our trip leaders will welcome you at the hotel where you will have plenty of time to discuss details and ask any questions you may have about the trip.
Accommodation: Anahi Boutique Hotel or similar
Day 2: Cotopaxi – Baños
The snow-capped Cotopaxi volcano is the main point of interest today. After breakfast, we will drive through the Andes accompanied by grandiose views of the Avenue of Volcanoes. Once we reach Cotopaxi National Park, we will go on our first acclimation hike around Lake Limpiopungo where we may see wild horses, wild bulls and some bird species. From here you can also take in a spectacular view of the Cotopaxi, one of the highest volcanoes in the world.
In the afternoon, we will head to the town of Baños at the entrance to the Amazon. Here we can drink cocktails and dance Salsa as we enjoy the fantastic night life.
Trekking time: 2 hours on flat terrain around Limpiopungo lagoon
Elevation: 12,631 ft
Accommodation: La Floresta Hotel or similar
Meals included: Breakfast and lunch
Day 3: Tena – Amazon
Bike down in the undiscovered and mystical Llanganates National Park, where an Inca Treasure is believed to be hidden. From there we’ll continue on to the Pastaza River Canyon surrounded by the picturesque cloud forest. The road brings us through some Andean farms and a beautiful canyon with many waterfalls.
As we descend into the jungle, we will see breath-taking views of Baños. The town is well-known for its spectacular location right at the foothills of the Tungurahua volcano. The volcano has been active since 1999 and is the main attraction of this region. At the end of our biking experience we hike for 20 minutes to see “Pailon Del Diablo,” the second largest waterfall in Ecuador.
In the afternoon, we continue our journey in the Amazon rainforest to visit a small village called Misahualli, or “monkey town.” In this amazing place, monkeys and people have adapted to live together. At the end of the day, we finally head to an eco-lodge to spend the night.
Accommodation: Iyarina Eco-lodge or similar
Meals included: Breakfast
Day 4: Jatunyacu River and Papallacta Hot springs
We will start the day by preparing our gear to paddle the wild Jatunyacu River neart to the Llanganates National Park. The beauty of this river will inspire you as it reveals the magic of the Amazon rainforest.
We will receive a very important safety briefing from our rafting guides before starting our class III rafting expedition down the river of clean water and awesome rapids. We will have a lot of fun playing games and exploring one of the canyons. After the ride, we will stop to enjoy a delicious picnic.
We conclude our day with a visit to the paradise of hummingbirds in Guango Reserve as we drive up the Andes. Finally we head to the volcanic hot springs resort, where we will spend the night.
Accommodation: Termas Papallacta Spa & Resort
Meals included: Breakfast and box lunch
Day 5: Quito
Spend the day exploring the Cayambe-Coca eco-reserve. Stop at a hummingbird sanctuary in the heart of the cloud forest and look for a hummingbird with the beak two times larger then its body (sword-billed hummingbird)
In the morning, we put rubber boots on to explore the magic of the thick cloud forest on a 3 hour hike. Along the way, you will have plenty of opportunities to see an incredible diversity of birds including: toucans, hummingbirds, jays, hawks, parrots, quetzals, etc. Flowers are also abundant in this region so keep your camera at the ready for photos of orchids, bromeliads, ferns, etc.
After the hike, we will relax in the volcanic hot springs at the Papallacta Spa Resort complete with a view of the majestic Andean mountains. Later on, we will be transported to Puembo, a small village close to Quito’s airport.
Accommodation: Posada Mirolindo or similar
Day 6: Quito – Departure
Today may mark the end of your Ecuador adventure, but you will take with you memories and photos to last a lifetime. It’s likely that you’ll leave a piece of your heart here that you will reclaim on your next trip to the enchanted land of Ecuador. We wish you a “buen viaje”!
Meals included: Breakfast
Minimum age: 12 years old
Group size: maximum 15 people
Travel style: Active
Itinerary disclaimer: It is our intention to adhere to the itinerary described; however, due to our travel style, on occasion, it may be necessary or desirable to make small changes. Weather conditions and unpredictable local circumstances may lead us to make alterations to the route and/or travel times. Hotels and flight schedules might change according to availability. Any mention to specific wildlife in the itinerary or trip details is not a guarantee that it will be seen during the trip.
Trekking time — Quilotoa crater lake: 1 hour downhill from 13,000 ft. to 12,000 and 1 h 20 min uphill same way back
Average temrerature:Day 15-34ºC / 59-93ºF – Night 12-17ºC / 53-62ºF
Difficulty level: Moderate to Challenging. This program is located in the Andes and Amazon. It includes hiking at 4000 meters in Quilotoa, biking mostly on flat areas, and downhill, class 3 whitewater rafting on the Jatunyacu River.
Meals: Traveling with our company you will have the possibility to experience and taste local food and snacks. Your guide will help you identify typical food and suggest the best places to enjoy it. Some meals are not included in order to give you some flexibility about where, what and with whom to eat. You have the option to share these meals with the group, however there is no obligation to do so. If you have any allergies or food restrictions, please inform us prior to your departure.
Accomodation: All prices are based on double-occupancy. If you are travelling solo, you will be matched with another participantof your same sex. If you prefer to have a single room, please contact us prior to your departure to arrange your accommodation at an extra cost.
Sustainable eco and cultural tourism: Clients receive a conservationist interpretation of the ecology of the Andes, Amazon Rainforest and Galapagos Islands with the factors that threaten it. We aim to promote long-term conservation of both the cultural identity and the environment of the local people. Your visit will encourage them to support responsible ecotourism. We transport out and recycle all non-organic garbage.
Guides are certified as Wilderness First Aid Responders. We carry a complete first aid kit.
After you book your experience, you will receive a confirmation email from us confirming that your payment went through. You will then be connected directly to the tour operator, in case you have any further questions. We are also happy to answer any questions about the tour, or travel in general in your country of destination.