North Adventure

Day 1: Quitsato and Horseback Ride

Day 2: Imbabura Volcano and Handicraft Workshop

Day 3: Train and Afro Ecuadorian Village

Day 4: Cuicocha Crater Lake

DAY 1: QUITSATO AND HORSEBACK RIDE

Highlights of the Day

-Valley of Guayllabamba
-Project Quitsato
-Rose Plantation

Drive north from Quito on the Pan-American Highway to cross the dry valley of Guayllabamba and from there we shall reach the fertile valley of Cayambe; our first stop will be where the road crosses the Equator . Visit the site of Quitsato, an independent project which proposes a innovative view of the Equator. From this point we shall continue to the province of Imbabura and reach Hacienda Cusin located on the surroundings of San Pablo Lake. After check in we visit a neighboring rose plantation and learn about this blooming industry. Return to Hacienda for lunch.

After a short rest we will have the options of a light horseback ride on this scenic countryside. Return to hacienda for dinner and a good and cozy fireplace. Overnight. (-/L/D)

DAY 2: IMBABURA VOLCANO AND HANDICRAFT WORKSHOP

Highlights of the Day

-Imbabura Volcano
-Valley of Angochahua
-Community of Zuleta
-City of Ibarra

After a good breakfast we start a half day hike towards the eastern flank of Imbabura volcano across fertile farmlands on old cobblestoned roads and different trails to reach the pass of the valley of Angochahua at 10.000 feet above sea level. Box lunch will be served along the way.

After the pass, we descend into the valley to reach the community of Zuleta, famous for their hand embroidery. Visit a local workshop and learn about this crafting tradition.

From there, we drive the last part of our excursion to the city of Ibarra and Hacienda Chorlavi to check in. After a good rest and freshen up, enjoy our dinner. Overnight. (B/L/D)

DAY 3: TRAIN AND AFRO ECUADORIAN VILLAGE

Highlights of the Day

-Andean Breakfast
-Nature Hike
-Valley of Latacunga

After breakfast we drive to the local train station to take a ride on this newly restored railway down the village of Santa Catalina de Salinas, a totally unexpected surprise. The train ride follows the canyon of the Ambi River crossing on high bridges and tunnels providing a very dramatic scene. After one and a half hour, we reach the Afro Ecuadorian community of Santa Catalina de Salinas, where we will learn about the history and traditions of these people.

Lunch at community restaurant. After lunch, we return to Ibarra along a very a panoramic drive. A short visit to the old part of the city will show us a lovely colonial looking town with ample plazas and cobblestoned streets bursting on commercial activity and some historical places. We will continue to Hacienda Chorlavi . Overnight. (B/L/D)

DAY 4: CUICOCHA CRATER LAKE

Highlights of the Day

-Cuicocha Crater Lake
-Leather Craft Market in Cotacachi

After a good breakfast we head south through the village of Cotacachi to the Cuicocha Crater Lake for a great nature five hour hike following the trail that circles this lake. A great variety of native plants and birds can be seen on this hike reaching the Andean tree line to bring you into the open grasslands of the paramo. All along, the magnificent scenery of the nearby mountains and valleys will show you the beauty of the Andes in its great splendor. Box lunch will be provided on the way.

After the hike, we will drive back to Cotacachi for a short stop in this village, known by its great leather craft ,with superb bargains on these goods. Afternoon drive back to Quito. (B/L/-)

Included:

Private English speaking guide and driver with A/C vehicles, all meals as detailed on the program, accommodation in selected properties, visits, excursions daily bottled water and activities. This excursion is a private basis tour however it might include certain shared or group visits on some locations.

Not Included:

Beverages, tips or personal expenses. For other languages than English (German, Italian or French) please ask for the surcharge.

IMPORTANT NOTE The itinerary could be modified due to regulations from National Parks, restoration of certain areas at haciendas or colonial houses or force majeure events.