This “Ecuador Highlights” suggested itinerary begins in Quito, the Capital City of Ecuador. From Quito it’s a short drive to Bellavista to visit the Cloud Forest & various species of Hummingbirds. You will then continue your travels to the Indian village of Otavalo with its animal market and traditional handicrafts. A visit to the hot springs of Papallacta will rejuvenate your spirit while enjoying the beauty of the snow-capped volcanoes. The multitude of waterfalls in Banos is worth a visit and you will have the opportunity to walk along the Cotopaxi volcano to its beautiful Crater Lake. The tour concludes with a transfer to Quito. This Ecuador travel itinerary, with so much to offer in one country can only be described as the real Ecuador!
|Day 1-2||Arrive in Quito and city tour|
|Day 3||Visit the Bellavista Cloud Forest with its various kinds of Hummingbirds & other species|
|Day 4-5||Travel to Otavalo for the renowned markets and handicrafts, visit weavers & instrument|
|Day 6||Relax in the thermal baths in Papallacta while surrounded by stunning landscapes|
|Day 7-8||Visit Baños to see the multitude of waterfalls and active volcanoes|
|Day 9-10||Travel to Cotopaxi & walk the Quilotoa Crater Lake|
|Day 11||Transfer back to Quito for your onward journey / next adventure|
Day 1: Quito
Quito is the starting place for your Ecuador adventure, this famous city is one of the highest cities in the world with an elevation of 2800meters above sea level. It’s also the capital of Ecuador and is the only capital in the world to be directly in front of an active volcano
Day 2: Quito
It’s time to explore this historic city. Quito is well known for its many churches, colonial buildings and the impressive basilica from the virgin which has spectacular views of this unique city
*Depending on what day during the week you are in Quito and if you are not too warn out from all the sights you have witnessed during the day we recommend having a great night out at the local theatre where you can enjoy an evening show with traditional dancers. A great way to get to feel the local culture!
Day 3: From Quito to Bella Vista
Transfer from Quito to Bella Vista. A drive that offers plenty of opportunity to take in the stunning scenery along the way.
Here you will find the mysterious cloud forests with its 8 different kinds of hummingbirds. These misty forests provide the ultimate bird watching spot as there are more than a hundred different species of birds.
Day 4: From Bella Vista to Otavalo
A private transfer from Bellavista to Otavalo. Otavalo is famous for having one of the biggest markets in South America selling unique weaving textiles and a huge animal market on Saturdays. You do not want to miss either one of these markets as the huzzle and buzzle makes for a great atmosphere and a fantastic encounter with the local community.
Day 5: Sightseeing in Otavalo
This village is also famous for its leather production. Following the village visit, your guide will take you to Cuicocha lake. The lakes in Otavalo are one of the most scenic panoramas in the northern highlands. After spending some time at the lake you will have lunch at a local restaurant and then continue on in the afternoon to a local family where you will be shown how to weave fine textiles. The remainder of the afternoon is at leisure to unwind or to explore the local streets in search of that perfect souvenir.
Day 6: From Otavalo to Papallacta
After breakfast you will be met in the lobby of your hotel and transferred to Papallacta by private vehicle. Papallacta is a small town but famous for its thermal baths that are filled with hot water from the nearby volcano Anti Sana. Papallacta is a wonderful place to relax and soak up the natural beauty of the surrounding landscape.
Day 7: From Papallacta to Baños
Your driver will take you into the southern direction to Baños. Along the way you will witness the beautiful country side Ecuador has to offer along with your driver explaining Ecuadorian history, cultures and customs of the locals. During the trip you will also see 11 out of 55 volcanoes in Ecuador. Afternoon at leisure
Day 8: Baños
Today is a self-explore day in Baños. Discover this small town at your own pace. It has many attractions, one of them being the active volcano of Tungarahua. Apart from volcano spotting there are a wide range of outdoor activities including bike riding to one of the most beautiful and impressive waterfalls of Ecuador. There are 57 waterfalls in the valley, and some are particularly impressive. The Virgin’s Falls is an example of a waterfall within the Banos city limits and you don’t want to miss this one. You can also relax in one of the many thermal baths in the surrounding areas, heated by the nearby volcanos. Go rafting or canoeing in the Napo river, bungee jumping or see the famous basilica and the virgin of the holly water. There is plenty to keep everyone occupied.
Day 9: From Baños to Quilotoa
Your highest trip of this holiday! The National Park Cotopaxi is named after the highest snow covered volcano, the Cotopaxi (5,897 meters).
It can be very cold at this height, so we advise to put on layers, rain jackets and good hiking shoes. You drive to the parking lot at 4,500 meters from where you walk to 4,800 meters. The climb is “just” 300 meters, but due to the height it can be hard. Your effort will be rewarded: at the Refugio you have a beautiful view over the National Park and other volcanoes like the Ruminahui.
After the tour you will drive to a beautiful hacienda where you can take a well-deserved rest at the fireplace.
Day 10: Cotopaxi National Park
This morning you will be picked up for a spectacular drive through the highlands of Ecuador. You will pass places in which it seems that time stands still. You will make a stop at the Quilotoa Crater Lake and have the opportunity to walk to the Azure lake.
Day 11: Depart Cotopaxi National Park
After breakfast your guide will meet you in the lobby of your hotel for your transfer from Cotopaxi back up to Quito. Upon arrival into Quito your ‘Ecuador Highlights’ suggested itinerary concludes.
- Arrival transfer in Quito
- 2 nights accommodation Quito
- Half day Quito city tour
- Transfer Quito to Bellavista
- 1 night accommodation Bellavista
- 2 lunches, 1 dinner Bellavista
- Transfer Bellavista to Otavalo
- 2 nights accommodation Otavalo
- Half day tour of Otavalo local weaving family
- Half day Otavalo village and Cuicocha lake tour
- Transfer Otavalo to Papallacta
- 1 night accommodation Papallacta with entrance to spa
- Transfer Papallacta to Baños
- 2 nights accommodation Baños
- Transfer Baños to Cotopaxi
- 2 nights accommodation Cotopaxi
- Transfer Cotopaxi to Quito
- Breakfast daily
- International and internal flight
- Items of personal nature
- Drink alcoholic and non-alcoholic
- Tips to Drivers, guides and porters
Travel Just 4U has competitive South America Flights to get you to the starting point of your chosen Holiday. Contact one of our Travel Consultants for a full quotation including airfares, stopovers and any additional travel you wish to organize.