Soft North Adventure Experience

Day 1: Quitsato and Imbabura

Day 2: Imbabura volcano and Community of Zuleta

Day 3: Project of Condor Huasi

Day 4: Otavalo Market and Traditional Cuisine

DAY 1: QUITSATO AND IMBABURA

Highlights of the Day

-Valley of Guayllabamba
-Project Quitsato
-Rose Plantation

Heading north from Quito on the Pan-American Highway we will cross the dry valley of Guayllabamba .From there we shall reach the fertile valley of Cayambe; our first stop will be where the road crosses the Equator and we will visit the site of Quitsato, an independent project which proposes an innovative view of the Equator. From this point we shall continue on to the province of Imbabura to reach Hacienda Cusin located at the surroundings of San Pablo Lake. After check in in we will visit a neighboring rose plantation and learn about this blooming industry. Return to Hacienda for lunch. After a short rest we will have the option of a light horseback ride on this scenic countryside. Return to hacienda for dinner and a cozy fireplace. Overnight . (-/L/D)

DAY 2: IMBABURA VOLCANO AND COMMUNITY OF ZULETA

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 provided on the way.

After the pass, we descend into the valley to reach the community of Zuleta, known for its hand embroidery. Visit a local workshop and learn about this crafting tradition. Afterwards, we will continue to Hacienda Zuleta for overnight.

Hacienda Zuleta, lies in the spectacular Andean mountain range of Ecuador at 9,600 feet. Zuleta is a colonial working farm of 4,000 acres (2,000 hectares) that belongs to the family of Mr. Galo Plaza Lasso, former president of Ecuador.

Dinner will be served at this property. Accommodation in Hacienda Zuleta. (B/L/D)

DAY 3: PROJECT OF CONDOR HUASI

Highlights of the Day

-Andean Train
-Afro Ecuadorian Village
-City of Ibarra

Today we will have the opportunity to see the biggest living bird on Earth. The Andean Condor. Condor Huasi project has been created to accomplish the conditional reintroduction of captive Andean condors of Ecuador into the wild. It also includes an educational objective of ‘páramo’ (high-altitude grasslands) conservation for the communities living in the area. The Condor Huasi is located in the property of Hacienda Zuleta, parish of Angochagua, county of Ibarra, province of Imbabura.

Back to Zuleta for Lunch. Free afternoon to walk and discover the surroundings of the hacienda with our guide.

Dinner and accommodation in Hacienda Zuleta.(B/L/D)

DAY 4: OTAVALO MARKET AND TRADITIONAL CUISINE

Highlights of the Day

-Cuicocha Crater Lake
-Leather Craft Market in Cotacachi

Today, our main interest is gastronomy and there is no better time to visit a market than early in the morning. Once in Otavalo, visit the famous Indian Market where vendors proudly offers an stunning variety of weavings – such as the famous ponchos – among other textiles like roofs, mittens and scarfs.

The market is often compared to a rainbow due to the colors the textiles exhibited. Our guide will take us across the market in order to get our supplies for lunch.

Back to Hacienda Cusin where our hosts will give us a cooking lesson. Later, a delicious typical Andean meal.

Free time to explore the Hacienda before we depart back to Quito. (B/L/-)

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.