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Avenue of the Volcanoes - 4 Days

Avenue of the Volcanoes
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This route was called ¨Avenue of the Volcanoes¨ by Alexander Von Humboldt in the time of the Spanish Colony. The reason is the quantity of volcanoes, most of them still active, which are possible to see along the route. Lots of them over 5000 meters high. We will visit Cotopaxi National Park, Baños Town, The famous train ride called Devil´s nose, The Inca ruins at Ingapirca and Cuenca city.

This route was called ¨Avenue of the Volcanoes¨ by Alexander Von Humboldt in the time of the Spanish Colony. The reason is the quantity of volcanoes, most of them still active, which are possible to see along the route. Lots of them over 5000 meters high. We will visit Cotopaxi National Park, Baños Town, The famous train ride called Devil´s nose, The Inca ruins at Ingapirca and Cuenca city.

Details:
Day 1: Quito – Cotopaxi – Baños town (L)
Day 2: Baños Town – Riobamba city (B,L,D)
Day 3: Riobamba – Alausi – Train ride – Ingapirca - Cuenca (B,L)
Day 4: Cuenca (View point “El Turi”, Plaza Calderón, Cathedral, Plaza de las Flores, Tuesday: 10 of August Market, Homero Ortega Hat Factory) Flight back to Quito. (B,L)

Notes:
* Train Operation is subject to change
** There is the option of adding a horseback riding activity at extra cost in Cotopaxi National Park.
*** It is possible to add an extra day in Quito for a Full Day Tour of the colonial city and the middle of the world site. Extra cost apply.
**** It is possible to add an extra day Baños to have a full day of White Water Rafting or other activities. Extra cost apply.

Day 1
Quito – Cotopaxi – Baños Town

We depart in the morning from your hotel towards “Cotopaxi Volcano and National Park”, a volcano of 5.897-m-high (18.870 feet high) considered the highest active volcano in the world. An impressive sight to see if weather conditions are in our favor. During our stay at the National Park we will admire its natural environment, its Flora and Fauna with explanations from your naturalist guide. We will try to ascend to the refuge located at 4.810 m (15.392 feet high). We will also take a hike around Limpiopungo Lake which is located at the foot of the volcano to observe some birds of the Paramo region (Andean Grasslands). On a clear day the view of the volcano reflected on the lake surface is magnificent. We will have lunch in the National Park and will move south towards Baños town. On the way we will have some stops to enjoy the views of the volcanoes.

Day 2
Baños – Riobamba City

We have breakfast at the hotel and we will move east to visit the amazing route of the waterfalls where we have the chance to have a little ride on a gondola crossing the big Pastaza River to get a close view of one of the waterfalls called “Manto de la novia”. We will also visit another waterfall called “Pailon Del Diablo” or Devil’s cauldron in English. To get here we will have a hike along a forest path for around 45 minutes. We will return to Baños for lunch. In the afternoon we will go swinging on the swing at the end of the world and will continue to Riobamba city to spend the night.

Day 3
Riobamba – Alausí (Devil’s Nose Train Ride) – Ingapirca – Cuenca

Early in the morning we will go to Alausi town and the train station for our ride called “Devils Nose”. This is a section of track that due to the difficulty involved in its construction, claimed the lives of many workers. The name used originally by the locals in this mountain side was “the Condor’s Aerie”.

The Devil’s Nose crossing is made by the use of switchbacks: the train rumbles ahead past a junction, then backs down the next section, before going forward again. It was the only way to get the lumbering trains down the hill.

After this train ride we will have lunch at the town’s restaurant and we will continue towards Ingapirca Ruins. Ingapirca is the largest and best preserved archaeological complex in Ecuador. The name Ingapirca means “Wall of the Inca” and its construction combines the coppery brown of adobe used by Cañari culture with the bluish-green andesite stones brought subsequently by the Incas. It was built with millions of stones. These ruins stand out, both for the extraordinary work of masonry in stone blocks that make up its walls, as well as the originality appreciated in the design of its main structure, a tall and bulky elliptical platform known as the “Castle of Ingapirca”.

After our visit to the ruins we will continue to Cuenca to check in at the hotel.

Day 4
Cuenca City Tour – Quito

The flowing day, we visit Cuenca city. First we will have a panoramic view of the city from “El Turi” view point before going to the center of the city to visit this colonial site. We will visit Plaza Calderón, The Cathedral, The Plaza of “las Flores“ and depending on the day of tour, if it’s Tuesday we will see the traditional “Cholas Cuencanas” performing spiritual rituals or “cleansing” to help people get rid of the bad energies affecting their health. (Chola Cuencana is the name given to the indigenous women in this part of the country)

After the city tour we will visit a Paja Toquilla (Panama) Hat factory to learn about the history behind these beautiful hats originally made in Ecuador. We have lunch and will transfer to the airport for our flight back to Quito. The accommodation is in Quito.

The Trip Cost Include

  • Certified bilingual guide
  • Private transportation
  • Accommodation in Baños, Riobamba, Cuenca and Quito
  • Flight Cuenca to Quito
  • Breakfast and Lunches as mentioned on the program
  • Devil´s Nose Train Ride
  • Entrance fees in Cuenca’s city tour, Baños town and Ingapirca Ruins.

The Trip Cost Excludes

  • Dinners and other meals not mentioned
  • Drinks
  • Tips and Gratuities
  • Personal expenses
  • Transfer in form Quito airport to hotel in Quito.
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Frequently Asked Questions

How difficult are activities on this trip?

All the activities are from easy to moderate, however, this can be relative to how used to high altitude you are during some visits.

What is the highest altitude reached on this trip?

This will be the Cotopaxi Refuge Camp, located at approximately 4.400 meters high (14.080 feet high) Ingapirca Ruins are located at approximately 3.000 meters high (9.600 feet high)

How are the guides?

Our guides are Certified Naturalist Guides with extensive experience on the destinations. They speak great English and some of them have experience in photography

What kind of outfit do I need for this trip?

On this trip we will be changing to different altitudes. For Cotopaxi and Ingapirca we recommend to wear layers. Temperature ranges during the day between 12 and 21 degrees Celsius (50 – 70 Fahrenheit). During the rainy season (October through May) the Andes are cloudy and humid and it is recommended to bring rain gear. In Baños Town the altitude is lower so weather is warmer and humid. Light weighed clothes will be good for this part of the trip. In Alausi weather is dry and warm so light clothes are recommended. In Cuenca city the altitude is approximately 2.400 m (7.700 ft) So weather will me temperate but mild.

You can send your inquiry via the form below.

Price From USD$1,205/person
1,205
Total $ 1,205 USD

Trip Facts

  • Cotopaxi, Baños, Riobamba, Alausí, Cuenca
  • 2 to 15
  • approx. from 1400 m (4.500 ft) - 4400 m (14.080 ft)
  • Private transportation
  • Breakfast & Lunch included
  • Tourist Superior Hotels
  • Flight Cuenca - Quito

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