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Ecuador Unlimited 12d/11n

ECUADOR 12 DAYS 11 NIGHTS

 

Day 1: Quito – International Flight – Welcome to Ecuador

After the arrival, our guide will welcome and transfer you from the airport to the hotel. Overnight in Quito. -/-/-

Day 2: Quito City tour – Middle of the world – Cayambe - Otavalo

At 2,800m above sea level, Quito is extended along the foot of the Pichincha Volcano. The journey begins with a visit to Guápulo lookout, the twentieth-century buildings, castles, the building of the Constituent Assembly, with its stone wall where by pulse it has been carved, the vast history of Ecuador.

The route continues towards down town Quito, visiting the colonial churches, monasteries, cloisters, chapels, streets; full of stories and legends that allow us to closely observe the structures that lush rose in the heyday of the Baroque, and inside many different samples stored in painting and sculpture that took shape in the hands of artists of the ‘’Escuela Quiteña’’.  Then, you will go to the ‘’Panecillo’’, a small hill with magnificent view which provides access to the four cardinal points of the city.

Ecuador, geographically positioned in the center of the globe, crossed by the equator, allows the visitor the experience of putting one foot in the northern hemisphere and the other in the southern hemisphere, so the country is considered the land in permanent spring. Visit the Intiñan Museum where it shows in a precise and a practical way the wisdom that Andean Native peoples had in relation to the Sun King.

Then we continue to the Lake Province, Imbabura for overnight in Otavalo. B/-/-

Day 3: Otavalo – Peguche – San Antonio

After breakfast we will visit the town of Peguche and its waterfalls. In town we will see how the indigenous create their weavings; then we continue to Otavalo Indian Market, their work in cotton and wool fabric has traveled across the world, thanks to the extraordinary commercial ability and adaptation of the artisans, textile tireless workers, imaginative, who show their crafts in the popular fair of Poncho (warm coat) at the square of the same name. In the afternoon we will go to  San Antonio de Ibarra, the birthplace of woodworkers who carve in each of the wood figures, the innate art of this sculptor’s village.   Overnight. B/-/-

Day 4: Otavalo – Cotacachi – Cuicocha - Papallacta

After breakfast we will visit Cotacachi, where its residents have structured family workshops specialized in the production of quality leather goods, and where the art of music goes together with the course of everyday. Overnight. 

Then we will go to Cuicocha, a lake with the shape of a "Cuy" (guinea pig) and named after this Andean rodent.  If you wish,  it  is possible to explore the lake in a boat ride; part of this  collapsed volcanic crater is still active.  It has  two islets, Wolf and Yerovi. Cuicocha was a volcano that erupted  3.500 years ago, creating the actual lake

 

We will leave Imbabura Province to the Amazon watershed, with scenic and biodiverse cloud forests on our minds. Our first stop en route, however, will be at a rose plantation where you will have the opportunity to ogle at many of the most popular and spectacular varieties that Ecuador produces. After this it will be time to move up in elevation to the majestic, windswept paramos of Papallacta - a very tundra-like habitat. On clear days here the views of the surroundings and various volcanoes are breath-taking; a stop right up at the continental divide is one of the best spots from which to photograph the snow-capped volcano, Antisana, as it towers over the mountains below. Overnight. B/-/-

Day 5: Papallacta – Tena – Amazon Lodge

Early in the morning we will go to the Amazon Region of Ecuador, starting in Tena city From Tena, we will head (2 hours more) for the indigenous village (depending the lodge), where a canoe will be waiting to take us on a journey down the Napo River to the Lodge.

The Amazon Jungle offer us a variety of activities: jungle walks, biodiversity, birdwatching, shamanism and indigenous culture is just something what you can experience out here!

The accommodation can be in different jungle lodges, these offer huts with single, double, triple, familiar and matrimonial rooms, all of which are equipped with a private bathroom, Apart from these budget lodges, there are also accomodations available that are more luxurious. B/-/D

Day 6: Amazon Lodge

Amazon lodge activities.  Accommodation. B/L/D

Day 7: Amazon Lodge - Baños

After breakfast our transport will take us to the towns of  Puyo and Baños. This trip offers plenty of fantastic views of the rugged landscape of the Pastaza Canyon. Continue to Baños. Situated in a valley of waterfalls and hotsprings, Baños has become a popular destination for travellers seeking year-round temperate weather, a small town atmosphere, and a base for exploring the great Ecuadorian outdoors.  Accommodation. B/-/-

Day 8: Baños town

After breakfast, we drive east to enter in the amazing cloud forest. We will enjoy a short walk in the cloud forest and admire the “Pailon del Diablo” and “Manto de la Novia” waterfalls. Later we will go to a lookout point to see the Tungurahua active volcano.  Free afternoon in Baños where you can choose between a lot of activities such as: biking to the waterfalls, trekking to thw waterfalls,  enjoy of the thermal baths, explore the town, ride a horse, go ziplining… B/-/-

 

Day 9: Baños - Riobamba

 

After breakfast, we will continue our journey driving to Riobamba through "El Arenal", an arid location in the slopes of Chimborazo mountain. This gigantic mountain was included in the famous 1802 expedition led by the german scientist Alexander Von Humboldt. If time and weather allow, this location offers amazing views of wild llamas, vicunas and alpacas. Accommodation in Riobamba to stay overnight in a local hacienda at the foothills of the impressive Mount Chimborazo (6310m), the highest and largest mountain in Ecuador. In the afternoon we will visit the city of Riobamba. Accommodation. B/-/-

Day 10: Riobamba – Devil’s Nose – Ingapirca – Cuenca

Breakfast. Early in the morning depart to Alausi, arrival to train station. At 8am you will start a magnificent trip.

The Devil´s Nose route is, without a doubt, the most impressive section of Ecuador´s railway: a hair-raising trip down the rocky slopes of the Andes departing from the Alausi town to Sibambe town on the way down to the Coastal Region. Afterwards, we will continue to Cuenca. On the way we will stop at the famous Ingapirca ruins (“wall rocks of the Inca”) which are the most important and well preserved of Ecuador’s Inca ruins situated to the north of Cuenca. We can take a nice walk around the beautiful site and imagine the scenes prior to the Spanish conquest.

A visit to the museum will reveal further details of how life was at the end of the 15th century. After the visit we will have time for lunch and then we will continue for about 2 hours down to the city of Cuenca. The beauty and atmosphere of colonial Cuenca is best experienced on foot.  

Overnight in Cuenca  B/-/-

Day 11: Cuenca – Cajas National Park - Guayaquil

From Cuenca we will drive to the Cajas National Park which is located to the west. In the park there are about 200 lakes, which are the remains of the last ice age. Small rivers, whose crystal-clear waters flow into the Pacific, connect the lakes. We will take a short hike through the highlands of the park.

After, we will continue to the west to the city of Guayaquil. It is Ecuador´s largest city situated at sea level and its port “Puerto Maritimo” is the main sea port of the country.  It is the commercial and industrial center of Ecuador and lies on the west bank of the river Guayas about 60 km from its outflow in the Gulf of Guayaquil.  B /- /-

Day 12: Guayaquil – Farewell – International Flight

Guayaquil still has many points of interest, including Parque Simón Bolivar, (popularly known as Parque de las Iguanas). The park is a delightful place for bird lovers as the abundant ficus trees here are home to some truly exotic flycatchers and arboreal Iguanas.  Experience the splendid “Palacio Municipal” and the several monuments including the architecturally grand “Gobernacion de la Provincia” building situated on the promenade at the waterfront Malecon Simon Bolivar which lines the shore of the Guayas river.  Positioned behind the park is a Neo Gothic Cathedral which provides an insight into Guayaquil´s interesting past.  In close proximity are the Moorish Tower and the awe inspiring Rotonda Monument portraying Simon Bolivar and Jose San Martin shaking hands. The two South American generals who liberated the continent from Spain met in Guayaquil in 1822.

As we stroll through the attractive district of Las Peñas, amid old houses constructed from timber, we pass art galleries and cafes with beautiful views.  On route we visit “Mercado Plaza del Sur”, a metallic structure designed by Eiffel. Heading west of Las Peñas, back to the hotel, we pass an extensive cemetery filled with remarkably ornate tombs, a vestige of times gone by, illustrating Guayaquil´s wealth over the last century.

After we will visit Guayaquil National Historic Park: This new 8,5hectars park has three different sections. The largest, which takes up over half of the total area of the park, is a wildlife zone that has 45 species of birds and numerous animals, including iguanas and caimans. This semi-natural habitat is set amidst segments of mangrove forests. The third area of the park focuses on local traditions, with an emphasis on rural customs, crafts and agriculture.

Transfer to the airport for your international flight.  B /- /-

TOUR INCLUDES:

- Private transportation for excursions

- All transfers in /out

- Bilingual guide (English / Spanish) for excursions and transfers

- Accommodation in double room with breakfast

- Meals as detailed in the itinerary

- Entrance fees and taxes

- All excursions and visits detailed in the itinerary

- All necessary equipment for activities mentioned in the itinerary

TOUR DOES NOT INCLUDE:

ü  Additional meals

- Tips

- All drinks

- Personal expenses

- VAT for Ecuadorian people and local agencies (12%)

- Personal equipment & required clothing for Andean climate (3ºC-15ºC/37ºF- 59ª)

- Any item not mentioned in the itinerary

 




Itinerary 1

ECUADOR

DAY 1 Quito – International Flight – Welcome to Ecuador DAY 2 Quito City tour – Middle of the world – Cayambe - Otavalo DAY 3 Otavalo – Peguche – San Antonio DAY 4 Otavalo – Cotacachi – Cuicocha - Papallacta DAY 5 Papallacta – Tena – Amazon Lodge DAY 6 Amazon Lodge DAY 7 Amazon Lodge - Baños DAY 8 Baños town DAY 9 Baños - Riobamba DAY 10 Riobamba – Devil’s Nose – Ingapirca – Cuenca DAY 11 Cuenca – Cajas National Park - Guayaquil DAY 12 Guayaquil – Farewell – International Flight

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Febrary, 2015 | Germany
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