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7 Day Central Andes Trekking

Created with Sketch. Quito, Cotopaxi, Chimborazo and Baños
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Duration

7 days

Tour Type

Specific Tour

Group Size

16 people

Languages

___

Overview

Trek in the Ecuadorian Andes while you discover an incredible world of stunning landscapes, hidden communities, indigenous cultures and massive volcanoes. These features and more come together to shape the famous Avenue of Volcanoes in the Ecuadorian highlands. This trekking adventure through the narrow trails used by the local mountain people will take you deep into the heart of the Andean culture and their lifestyle.

“Unique Experiences:”

– Explore the mythical Llanganates National Park and search for the Inca hidden treasure

– Admire the stunning glacier of the highest summit measured from the center of the world.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • COTOPAXI VOLCANO TREK
  • QUILOTOA LOOP TREK
  • CLOUD FOREST HIKING
  • PUJILI MARKET
  • CHIMBORAZO VOLCANO TREK
  • BAÑOS HOT SPRINGS

Itinerary

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Day 1: ARRIVAL IN QUITO

Welcome to Quito! The largest, best-preserved colonial city of America - declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1978. The city is considered the Cultural Capital of South America and is located on the equator in a valley at the foothills of the Pichincha volcano. Depending on arrival time, you can spend your day exploring the old town of Quito and the surrounding area. We can help you to organize a day trip (please request in advance). In the evening (around 18 pm), one of our trip leaders will meet you at the hotel’s lobby for a welcome briefing at 18:00 hours. At this time we will discuss the details and questions you may have regarding the adventure. Our first day is an acclimation and information day.

Meals included: None.
Accommodation: Wyndham Garden Quito or similar.

Day 2: TREKKING IN COTOPAXI NATIONAL PARK

You will begin this adventure driving south on the pan American highway for about 2 hours, this area is known as The Avenue of Volcanoes, it was named like this by the famous German Explorer Alexander Vond Humboldt, on the way you might be able to enjoy views of volcanoes like Cayambe, Antisana, Pichincha, Illinizas, Pasochoa, and Corazon.
Begin by hiking the sierra climate around the Limpiopungo lagoon (13000 ft/3800 m) on the foothills of the Rumiñahui volcano. From here, you have the best views of Cotopaxi, the highest active volcano in the world. There is also the possibility to see wild horses, wild bulls and some bird species. If the weather conditions permit, you will attempt to trek to the basecamp at 16000 ft. (4876 m). Concluding our day, you will drive to Isinlivi where we will spend the night.

Trekking time: 2 hours on flat terrain around Limpiopungo lagoon, elevation: 12,631 ft, elevation gain 1,000 feet, distance 5 miles, total steps 15,345.

Meals included: Lunch, Dinner.
Accommodation: Hostal Llullu Llama or similar.

Day 3: TREKKING THROUGH THE TOACHI CANYON TO CHUGCHILAN

The charming Andean mountain landscapes will inspire us today on a trek along the Toachi canyon for 13.5 km (8.4 mi). Experience stunning views of small villages and indigenous people working in the fields. You will hike down to the canyon of the Toachi River and then back up to the main road that will take us to Chugchilán, a small town located in the middle of the Quilotoa Loop. Here we will find our Eco-house accommodation, and in the afternoon, you can explore the village with a great opportunity to gain a bit of cultural experience with the locals.

Trekking time: 2 hours downhill from 10,810 ft. (3295 m) to the Toachi River at 9,500 ft (2896 m) and then 2 hours uphill to Chugchilán at 10,498 ft. (3200 m) Total steps: 25,481

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner.
Accommodation: Hostal Mama Hilda or similar.

Day 4: TREKKING TO QUILOTOA

Early in the morning after breakfast, you will start our hiking adventure for 11 km (6.9 miles) on small trails blazed by the mountain people and still used by locals to transport products and to travel across the canyons to reach neighboring communities. While trekking on this trail, it is common to see the traditional custom of exchanging goods with one another, bartering is still being utilized today. You will venture down into impressive canyons to later climb back up to the top of the crater rim, where you will be rewarded with spectacular views of the Quilotoa Lake. The majesty of this place will take your breath away.
Enjoy a beautiful picnic with the best views from the volcano and transfer 2,5 hours to lodge in a magical hacienda in the foothills of Chimborazo volcano.

Trekking time: 1 hour downhill from 10,498 ft. to the Toachi River at 9,800 ft. and then 2 and a half hours uphill to 13,000 ft. After, 1 hour and a half on flat terrain. Total steps: 27,518.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch.
Accommodation: Andaluza Hacienda or similar.

Day 5: TREK TO CHIMBORAZO BASECAMP

Early in the morning, you will drive through valleys and farming villages to reach the Chimborazo Volcano, the highest mountain in Ecuador with an elevation of 6310 m (20702 ft) above sea level; whose summit is the furthest point from the center of the earth on the entire planet. On a clear day, the majestic peak of Chimborazo dominates the view for many kilometers. Visiting this spectacular national park includes a short hike for 0.9 km (0.57 mi) to reach the elevation of 5000 m (16404 ft) where the glacier begins. On the hike, we will try to spot a few of the animals that inhabit this volcanic climate such as the Andean condor, cara-cara, hummingbirds, and the timid wild Vicuñas. Once extinct in Ecuador, they were reintroduced into the wild and are now protected; this beautiful animal is related to the alpacas and llamas. A delicious picnic will be organized at the base camp before we leave.

Trekking time: 1.5 hours uphill from 15,748 ft. to 16,732 ft. and then 45 minutes downhill the same way back. Total steps: 14,974.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch.
Accommodation: La Casa de Luis or similar.

Day 6: TREK IN THE LLANGANATES NATIONAL PARK

Trek in Llanganates National Park for 6 hours, famous for its amazing landscapes and storied mystery. Legend has it that the Inca General Rumiñahui has a large sum of gold hidden somewhere in the Tungurahua mountain range. Start the hike at 3,200m (10,498 ft) above sea level and travel upwards to 3,600m (12,024 ft). See a variety of changes in vegetation while trekking to higher elevations. Expect stunning views of the Tungurahua Volcano and the Sangay Volcano (if visibility is good). After this beautiful trek return to Baños to spend the lasts night in this magical town.
Good opportunity to join the neighbor spa and get a nice massage after a day of trekking moon-like landscape of Chimborazo and drive on to the tropical town of Baños. In the evening we can soak in the famous hot springs of Baños and experience the thriving nightlife of this town.

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch.
Accommodation: Casa de Luis or similar.

Day 7: HIKE TO THE ROAD OF WATERFALLS AND RETURN TO QUITO

Baños is a town well known for its spectacular location right at the foothills of the active Tungurahua volcano and is an excellent place for outdoor activities including: horseback riding, canyoning, hiking, mountain biking, climbing and rafting. It is one of the most popular and important tourist spots in the country, you will find many Ecuadorian families vacationing here. One look to this delightfully green mountain town and you will know why. Surprisingly, it is pleasant and unspoiled. This morning we will hit the road of the waterfalls. The first stop will be at the Bride´s Veil waterfall, where we will take the Tarabita (cable car) to get across the Pastaza River. Then, we will hike down for one hour to the Pailon del Diablo waterfall, the second highest in Ecuador. After a day full of adventures in the cloud forest, you will enjoy the scenic ride returning us to Quito City.

Trekking time: 45 minutes downhill from 5,249 ft. to 4,950 ft. and then 1-hour uphill same way back. Total steps: 13,000

Meals: Breakfast.
Accommodation: None.

End of services.

Included/Excluded

  • Transportation: Private and comfortable land transportation.
  • Accommodation based on double occupancy: 3 or 4-stars eco-hotel in Isinlivi, hostel in Chugchilan, 4+ star Andean lodge in Chimborazo, 3 +* hotel in Baños.
  • Meals: 5 breakfasts, 5 lunches, and 2 dinners
  • Activities: Trekking in Isinlivi, 3-day trekking to Chugchilan and Quilotoa, hiking to the glaciers of Chimborazo highest volcano in Ecuador, watch vicuñas (camel similar to llama or alpaca), trek the Llanganates National Park, hiking the road of the waterfall in Baños, soak in volcanic hot springs, cable-car ride in Baños, hike to Pailon del Diablo waterfall, salsa lesson, cultural experience with the local people, Pujili indigenous authentic market.
  • Gear: hiking sticks, bikes.
  • Trip Leader: Certified expert English-speaking adventure Trip Leader and local guides.
  • International flights.
  • Single Supplement.
  • Airport transfers.
  • Travel insurance (mandatory).
  • Meals not described in the itinerary (estimated budget USD $120).
  • Tips for guides and drivers (estimated budget USD $120).
  • Personal Expenses.

Tour's Location

Created with Sketch. Quito, Cotopaxi, Chimborazo and Baños

FAQs

What is the suggested packing list for this tour?
PACKING LIST
- Passport
- Travel insurance
- Airline tickets
- Credit or debit card
- Quick dry clothing
- Buff
- Fleece top
- Winter gloves
- Winter jacket
- Winter hat
- 4 shirts/t-shirts
- 2 pair of shorts
- 2 pairs of long trousers
- 1 pair hiking pants/track pants
- Rain jacket
- Rain pants
- Sun hat or cap
- 1 swimming suit
- Sport sandals
- Hiking shoes
- Tennis shoes
- Day backpack 20 L. (with rain cover)
- Pocket knife
- Watch or alarm clock
- Waterproof binoculars (if possible)
- Insect Repellent
- Sun screen 60 SPF
- Flashlight or headlamp
- Waterproof camera (if possible)
- Personal water bottle 2L. or camelback 2L.
- Money belt
- Sunglasses
- First-aid kit(should contain lip salve, Aspirin, Band-Aids, anti-histamine, altitude medication, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, re-hydration powder, extra prescription drugs you may be taking.

REMEMBER: IT IS VERY IMPORTANT TO TRAVEL LIGHT.

NOTE: EVERYDAY, THERE WILL BE A TRUCK IN CHARGE OF TAKING CARE OF YOUR LUGGAGE FROM PLACE TO PLACE.
Important Details
ITINERARY DISCLAIMER
It is our intention to adhere to the itinerary described; however, due to our travel style, on occasions, 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 of specific wildlife in the itinerary or trip details is not a guarantee that it will be seen during the trip.

DRIVING TIME
2 – 4 hours a day.

SEASON
All year

PROVINCE
Pichincha, Cotopaxi, Tungurahua, Pastaza, Napo, Imbabura.

TERRITORY
Andes Mountain Range and Amazon Tropical Rain Forest in Ecuador

ALTITUDE
Quito: 2.810 m (9.186 ft.)
Baños: 1.820 m (5.971 ft.)
Tena: 510 m (1.673 ft.)
Papallacta: 3.300 m (10.827 ft.)
Otavalo: 2.550 m (8.366 ft.)

AVG. TEMP.
Day 15-34ºC / 59-93ºF - Night 12-17ºC / 53-62ºF

DIFFICULTY LEVEL
Easy to Moderate - Even though we are including many outdoor activities such as Trekking, Cross Country and Mountain Biking, Canyoning and Rafting, we consider this expedition as a soft adventure. Children and adults can do it with no problem, and for people that want to take a break or just avoid any of these adventures, they can always hang out with the driver doing something else. For people that may want to do a bit more challenging, our guides will be happy to coordinate something to help them.

NOTE - For specific details of activities please view the full itinerary.

ADVENTURE GEAR
Our Company is always making sure in having the best outdoor gear possible, and we are very proud to work with the best brands, like Trek bikes, Aire and NRS for white water, Black diamonds for trekking and Eureka for Camping.

ACCOMMODATION
All prices are based on double occupancy. If you are traveling solo, you will be matched with another participant of your same-sex. If you prefer to have a single room, please contact AJ prior to your departure to arrange your accommodation at an extra cost.

MEALS
Traveling with us 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 this. If you have any allergies or food restrictions, please inform AJ prior to your departure.
Vegetarians, Vegans and Gluten Free people are very welcome in our trip, our guides are always ready to coordinate with chefs and restaurants for substitute meals for them, as Ecuador is very well known for its great diversity of gastronomy.

YOUR TRIP LEADERS AND GUIDES
All our guides and trip leaders are highly experienced, licensed from the Tourism University to operate in Ecuador and certified as Wilderness Adventure First Aid respondents. They all have approved several extra training courses for kayaking, rafting, biking, and horse riding, besides this they all are Ecuadorian and have a fantastic personality. We always carry a complete first aid kit in our trips.
In some locations and for some activities, local guides join the trip leaders to provide an added service and make sure we practice sustainable tourism involving local indigenous people in our operation.

SUSTAINABLE ECO AND CULTURAL TOURISM
Clients receive interpretation and education about the ecology and conservation of the Andes, Amazon rain forest and Galapagos Islands, and learn about the factors that threaten it. We aim to promote long-term conservation of both local people's cultural identity and the environment. We transport out and recycle all non-organic garbage and we prefer to work with local suppliers. Your visit will encourage the local communities to support responsible eco-tourism as a sustainable alternative for their living.

HEALTH INFORMATION
Please inform AJ of any existing medical conditions (i.e. pregnancy, diabetes, etc). Yellow fever, Hepatitis B vaccination, and Malaria Medication are recommended when traveling to the tropics. Please ask your doctor for advice.
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from $1.470,00

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