Ecuadorian Unique Experiences
Hike to the surreal crater lake of Laguna Quilotoa
Witness one of South America’s most beautiful natural wonders, Laguna Quilotoa, on the short walk to its rim or embark on the multi-day, village-to-village hike of the Quilotoa Traverse to discover the indigenous culture and rural lifestyle of the Ecuadorian Andes.
Soak in Baños healing mud baths
Take advantage of the therapeutic properties of the Baños mud baths’ volcanically-heated waters while soaking in its pools of varying temperatures. Then admire the breathtaking views of Tungurahua Volcano during an exhilarating swing out across a deep ravine at the nearby "Swing at the End of the World".
Experience the cosmopolitan atmosphere of Guayaquil’s lively malecon
Explore the museums, art galleries, artisan markets and gardens which line the modern riverfront promenade of Malecon Simon Bolivar in Guayaquil while soaking up the lively local atmosphere as families come to stroll and dine at its alfresco restaurants.
Go white water rafting through the Amazon Jungle
Experience the lush tropical rainforests of the Rio Napo and the challenging Class IV rapids of Rio Misahualli on a white water rafting trip along Ecuador’s Amazon River tributaries. Or embark on the multi-day rafting adventure through the spectacular Namangosa Gorge as you travel down the Rio Upano.
Embark on an adventure through Mojanda Lakes’ rugged landscapes
Go trekking through alpine tundra from the azure blue Laguna Grande to Laguna Chiquita and Laguna Negra along the Mojanda Lakes’ picturesque Circuit Route. Or tackle the challenging ascent to the extinct volcanic peak of Fuya Fuya which boasts spectacular views across the Andean highlands.
Go hiking through the lush Mindo Cloud Forest
Wake early to spot Andean cock-of-the-rock and yellow breasted antpitta on a birdwatching tour or hike to the cascading waterfalls of Mindo Cloud Forest. Be surrounded by butterflies, get up close to hummingbirds or marvel at the huge diversity of orchid species at Mindo’s nature-based farms.
Listen to live Latino music in the cultural capital of Loja
Learn about traditional instruments at the Museum of Music in Loja before seeing a live performance of traditional Andean music or salsa in this cultural capital. Then admire the reliefs depicting scenes from the city’s history in Independence Square.
Explore Cuenca’s heritage-listed streets
Admire the Spanish colonial architecture built atop carefully carved Incan stone foundations in the UNESCO World Heritage-listed city of Cuenca. Wander the central Parque Calderon, home to both the 19th-century Catedral Nueva and the 16th-century Catedral Vieja, then explore artefacts from the Incan city of Tomebamba in the Museo Pumapungo.
Attempt the challenging trek to Cotopaxi Volcano’s summit
Take in the breathtaking sunrise views across Ecuador on a two-day expedition to the icy summit of one of the tallest volcanoes in the world, Cotopaxi (5,897 metres), trekking across its equatorial glacier using crampons on the approach to its spectacular crater rim.
Travel through the Andean Highlands on the "Train of Wonders"
Experience the volcano-dotted landscapes and picturesque villages of the Andean Highlands on the "Train of Wonders" trip from Quito to Guayaquil. Travel along the zig-zag pass of "Devil’s Nose" and through tracts of untouched rainforest, before winding through agricultural fields of sugar cane, pineapples and bananas.
Soak up the bohemian beach vibe of Montañita
Enjoy the laid-back beachside bungalows and local seafood restaurants of Montañita on the southern coastline’s Santa Elena peninsula which boasts one of Ecuador’s most attractive stretches of golden sands.
Soak up the colourful celebrations of the Inti Raymi festival
Follow devotees as they bathe in the Peguche Waterfall, cleansing themselves for the start of Otavalo’s Inti Raymi festival which honours the winter solstice (I feel that this information is quite important to explain why the festival is celebrated). Then return to the city as troupes of "san juanitos" lead parades of traditional music and dance to awaken Mother Earth.