Duration: 10 Days
Location: Ecuador
Price: US$ 2,260(AU$ 3,132)
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  • Inclusions:

    • All transfers and Accommodation with daily breakfast
    • Train Ride to Cuenca
    • Visit some of the best attractions in Ecuador
  • Day 1 QUITO

    Upon arrival in Quito transfer from the airport to the hotel.

    Day 2 QUITO (B)

    Today you will enjoy a sightseeing tour of the city of Quito which leads you through the historical centre of Quito for a walk through the culturally diverse history of this city. We will pass the church of La Compañia, which has the most ornate and richly sculptured façade and interior, the Independence Square with the Government Palace and the Cathedral including a visit. Afterwards, we will visit the famous hill of the old town, Panecillo (little bread) where you will see the angel statue “Virgen de Quito”.

    Afterwards visit of the Equatorial Line Monument called “Middle of the World” where you get a truly rare experience to stand in both, the Northern and Southern Hemispheres simultaneously. The Equatorial Monument marks the spot where an 18th century French scientific expedition established the exact position of the Equator. The area has been built as a typical colonial town, with restaurants, gift shops and Post Office with philatelic sales. Visit the monument and Ethnographical Museum, which shows the history of the Indian cultures of Ecuador.

    Return to your hotel.

    Day 3 QUITO – OTAVALO (B)

    In the morning continue to Otavalo and visit of a school project in Peguche. This project arose out of the German association “We help children in Ecuador” and looks after the education and adequate care of children in need in Ecuador. In 1997 the association started to renovate an old tumble-down Hacienda with the vision to build a social centre for children – the »Casa del Niño«. This house contains today a kindergarten for all age groups, a school, and the opportunity to be trained as a carpenter in the carpenter’s shop.

    In the afternoon you will discover the world renowned Indian handcrafts market, Otavalo. The town consists of rather functional buildings with the Plaza de los Ponchos as the centre. The local Indians have achieved economic prosperity as a result of their skill in weaving a tremendous variety of designs in belts, tapestries, ponchos and other clothing items. Here you will enjoy the unique variety of handicrafts and textiles that offer this giant colourful market and certainly, you will be able to carry some new souvenirs with you.

    Day 4 OTAVALO – PAPALLACTA (B)

    Today, you will go on to visit Laguna Cuicocha, a crater lake at an altitude of 3000m with a diameter of about 3 kms. Two islands emerge from the centre, both of volcanic origin, covered with vegetation and rimmed with totora, a type of reed. The small town Cotacachi itself is Ecuador’s centre of leatherworks. Here you can stroll along the small streets choosing one of the various shops as your favourite.

    Afterwards transfer to the small Andean village Papallacta, which is famous for its thermal baths. Upon arrival in Papallacta you will visit the baths of the Hotel „Termas de Papallacta“, which are located 3,220 m above sea level. Enjoy the pleasant effect of the warm, odourless thermal water surrounded by a wonderful landscape. After enjoying the pools you may go for a walk to get to know the typical flora and fauna of this region.

    Day 5 PAPALLACTA – COTOPAXI (B)

    After breakfast you will drive to “Cotopaxi National Park”. The highland zone, protected since 1975, with its 33,000 ha wide area belonging to one of the most attractive ecological reserves in the country. On a walk near the shallow lake „Laguna de Limpiopungo” at an altitude of almost 4,000 m, you will have the chance to learn about the typical vegetation of the so-called “Páramo” and will gaze in wonder at the beautiful view of Cotopaxi (5897m) in the background. Taking a picture here makes photographers’ hearts beat faster!

    Today you will also visit a beautiful flower plantation where the friendly staff will explain to you everything about their work. The plantation displays a great variety of flowers.

    Day 6 COTOPAXI – RIOBAMBA (B)

    After breakfast you will visit a colourful and original Indian market.

    Continue about 14 km on to Quilotoa, the famous volcanic lake with beautiful views. In the late afternoon you will continue on to Riobamba, which is the capital of the province of Chimborazo, where a great number of indigenous communities live. Close to Chimborazo, the highest mountain of Ecuador, you will spend the night in one of the atmospheric Hosterías this region offers.

    Day 7 RIOBAMBA – CUENCA (B – L)

    After an early breakfast you will be taken to the train-station in Alausí to board the train for the famous Devil’s Nose ride.

    Enjoy the fascinating landscape of the Andes. This is for sure a very special way to get to know the country! Lunch box is included.

    Note: Due to weather conditions or technical problems with the train, train ride is subject to reconfirmation!

    You will start the approximately 2 hour drive to the City of Cuenca. On the way you will stop at the Inca ruin site of Ingapirca, the most important monument of pre-Spanish culture in Ecuador. The ruins are located on a grass-covered hill at an altitude of about 3,100 m. On a walk through the former place where the Incas lived and hold their ceremonies, you will learn about their beliefs and rituals as well as about the way they constructed this ordination place, which has the shape of a puma.

    After arriving in Cuenca, you will check in at your hotel.

    Day 8 CUENCA (B)

    After breakfast, you will visit the sights of Cuenca, the third largest city of Ecuador. In Cuenca, founded in 1557 on an Inca settlement valley, you still breathe the colonial air of Ecuadorian history. For most Ecuadorian inhabitants – and also for travellers – this centre of art, ceramic, panama hats as well as products of silver and gold is the most beautiful city in Ecuador. Due to the special atmosphere and early 19th century architecture, Cuenca was declared a “Cultural Patrimony of Mankind” in November 1999. During the city tour you will see the historical buildings, located along the Tomebamba River, the “Todos los Santos” ruins, the flower market and the main square with the old and new Cathedral. Furthermore, you will be led to a Panama hat factory.

    The afternoon will be at leisure. You may walk around the narrow cobblestoned streets with the whitewashed houses and noble façades to explore the beauty of this town on your own.

    Day 9 CUENCA – GUAYAQUIL (B)

    This day we will travel on to Ecuador’s largest city Guayaquil, which is the industrial and commercial centre of the country. It lies on the western banks of the Río Guayas, about 56 km from its outflow into the Gulf of Guayaquil. Towards the coastal area the road loses height and the land is more intensively farmed. The Guayas lowlands are characterized by mangroves and ever increasing banana plantations.

    En route visit of a cacao project. During a guided tour through the cacao plantations visitors can learn everything about the cultivation of the cacao fruit, the process of harvesting and the cacao bean treatment. The Ecuadorian cacao is famous and popular for its very high quality.

    Upon arrival in Guayaquil short sightseeing tour of the city.

    Day 10 GUAYAQUIL (B)

    Transfer to the airport for your departure flight to your country or you can book an extension program to visit the Galápagos Islands.

    End of our services

    Food Code = (B) – Breakfast, (L) – Lunch, (D) – Dinner.

    LHSTUIO001 *Please note, prices based on twin share, per person, low season, 3 star rates. 4 passengers is the minimum requirement for the tour to be guaranteed. Optional tours not included and are at extra cost. The itinerary & pricing can change at any time due to availability & of activities. Please check our website for full terms and conditions*

  • More on Ecuador:

    Ecuador – The State of the Andes has its name because of its location on the equator. Ecuador is situated in the northwest of South America and borders in the north with Colombia, in the east and south with Peru and borders in the West upon the Pacific Ocean. The Galapagos Islands, situated in the Pacific Ocean, with a distance to the continent of about 1000 km, belongs to the national territory of Ecuador.

    Visa Requirements to Ecuador:

    Visas are not required for Australians when the maximum stay is 90 days.

    When visiting Galapagos you must obtain a Transit Control Card – Fee: USD 20.00 (Ingala Fee)* and pay the Galapagos Entrance fee: USD 100.00*.

    *Note: Fees can change at any time without prior notice. To have an accurate information double check with your travel agent or the nearest embassy / consulate.

    For more information consult your nearest Ecuadorian embassy/consulate.

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