Andean Trek

  • Destination:
  • Duration: 12 days or more
  • Price: from USD 1,340
  • Highlights :

    Trekking in the Andes with climbs to 3 peaks between 4200m and 4600m and ice climbing on the volcano Cayambe (optional).
    Quito historic center World Cultural Heritage, Equator line, Indian Market, Train of the Andes, National Parks: Cotacachi-Cayapas, Cayambe-Coca, El Angel and Chimborazo.

Day 01

Arrival in ECUADOR-Quito:

Arrival in Ecuador, at Quito capital at 2800 mt. Welcome at the airport and transfer to the hotel in the historic center of the city (+/- 1h).
Day 02

Quito-Equator line-Quito

Morning dedicated to the city tour of Quito, surrounded by volcanoes and dominated by Pichincha volcano (15,750 ft). The town was founded by the Inca civilization and developed by the Spanish colonizers. Its historic center is a real architectural jewel, dating of XVIth and XIXth century and classified Cultural Heritage of Humanity by Unesco with this places, churches and colonial convents. Lunch free, then transfer to “The Middle of the World”, in the North of Quito, where the fictitious Equator line goes and marks this altitude 00’00 established in XVIII century thanks to the famous 1st French Geodesic Mission. Visit of the Equator monument and its neo-colonial village. On option, visit of the Ethno-Scientific Intiñan museum, where you will prove yourself the latitude 0. Then, drive to the beautiful Andean region of Otavalo. Stop for a panoramic view at San Pablo Lake, dominated by the majestic Imbabura. Dinner free and night in a hotel in Otavalo.
Day 03

Otavalo : Indien Market – Cuicocha Lake – 3/4h

Morning visit of the famous Indian of Otavalo one of the most recognized and colorful ones in Latin America. The indigenous trade and artisans occupy an important place : basket, hats, many weavings, musical instruments,… Departure of Otavalo and we take the car (+/- 45min) to the beautiful lagoon of Cuicocha (3100m), an old volcanic crater that the nature transformed into a lake. Lunch picnic. Acclimatization trek around the lake (3400 m/a 4-5 h walk). Wonderful view over the twin islands the volcanic domes and Wolf and Yerovi Island, result of subsequent eruptions. Dinner and night in comfortable huts with view over the lake
Day 04

Mojanda Lakes-Fuya Fuya Volcano

Departure of Cuicocha, drive to the Mojanda lakes (3730 mt), a complex of 3 lakes forming part of the eruption and collapse of the volcanoes Mojanda and Fuya-Fuya 165000 years ago. Ascent to the Fuya Fuya volcano peak (4294 mt). 2 to 3 hours will be necessary to reach the peak. Easy ascent, nevertheless a bit steep in the end, but without difficult technique. Lunch picnic. Transfer to the small village La Esperanza. Dinner and night in a small, sympathetic familial hostel.
Day 05

Ascension Volcano Culbiche (3826m) 4h/5h

In the morning departure and short transfer to the departure point of the hike that will bring us till the peak of the volcano Cubilche. Today’s hike is in a region rich of indigenous agriculture at the feet of the volcanoes Imbabura and Cusin. Lunch picnic. Return in car and return to the hostel. Dinner and night.
Day 06

Peak of the Volcano Imbabura (4630)-Otavalo

Early morning transportation (+/-15min) to join the departure of the path of ascent to the Cerro Imbabura. Acclimatization ascent from 3300 to +/- 4300m of altitude where we enjoy an amazing view over the region of Otavalo and the lake San Pablo. According to the physical conditions of the group, it’s possible to ascent to the preak “Taita Imbabura” (4630 mt). This ascension is technically not difficult but it requires a constant physical effort for at least 6 hours. Lunch picnic. Return by car and transfer to the hotel in Otavalo. Dinner free and night.
Visit of the famous Indigenous market of Otavalo (saturday or reduced the other days). In option, typical lunch with a Otovalenian Music band (on Saturday). Then drive to Pasochoa volcano in Quito region and arrival at a cosy shelter surrounded by a nice scenery. Dinner and night.
Day 07

For the Hikers: Otavalo-Trek Forest of Polylepis (3550 mt) 3/4h

Departure to the extreme north of the country to the ecological reserve El Angel. Lunch free during the way. Arrival in a rustical lodge and installation in the cabins. Afternoon, walk, accompanied by a native guide in an exotic primary forest of Polylepis. Normally small and fragmented, these forests are about to disappear. Those of El Angel are one of the most important and oldest ones of South America. Dinner and night in the lodge.
Option 2

For the Hikers: Trek in Ecological Reserve El Angel-Quito

After the breakfast, departure for a 4/5h trek by walk in the reserve El Angel. It is one of the coldest regions of Ecuador through the typical Andean landscape sprinkled with endemic species (frailejones and polylepis). Lunch picnic. Return to the loge and return to the capital. Dinner free and night in the hotel.
Note: The proposed hikes can be changed in order and according to the local and climatic conditions.
Day 08

For the Climbers: Otavalo-Refuge of Cayambe (4600m) 3/4h

Meeting with your vehicle and your professional mountain guide in your hotel in Otavalo and transfer to the refuge of the volcano Cayambe (+/- 2h15 of route). Installation and lunch in the refuge followed by a small instruction in the snow, ice and slopes of 40 to 80º for recall the movements and technics of progression in the high mountain with crampons and ice axes, handling the rope, belay simple techniques, auto shutdown, etc. Practice on the glacier between 4500 and 4600 mt. Dinner and night in the refuge.

Option 2

For the Climbers: Ascension Volcano Cayambe (5790) 7/9h

Ascension to the Cayambe in a night milieu. Get up at midnight, breakfast and departure of the refuge 1h to the peak of the Cayambe 5790 mt, the third highest peak in Ecuador. Ascension essentially ice does not require difficult techniques. The crevasses are few and visible. Just snowfall or the climatic conditions can make it more difficult. The whole climb needs about 5 to 6 hours before reaching the peak. Return to the refuge at 10h 30 or later. Small snack an return to the capital. Dinner free and night in a hotel.

Day 09

Quito-Baños

Drive along the avenue of volcanoes to the charming thermal town of Baños, famous for its hot springs. (+/- 4h). Lunch free. Afternoon rest and tourism in this sympathetic small thermal city. Various optional activities are possible: Thermal bath, horse riding, mountain biking, hike in the mountains around Baños, visit the beautiful waterfalls in a tropical vegetation that shows that the Amazon is that close, shopping, Dinner free and night in the hotel.

Day 10

Baños – Refuge and Glacier of the Chimborazo (5200m) 2/3h

Transfer via the route of Guaranda to the National Park Chimborazo. Crossing “l’arenal”. Observation of storks. By vehicle to the first refuge of the Chimborazo in 4800 mt. Short climb (1h, facultative) to the refuge Edward Whimper (5000 mt). According to the physical condition of the participants, possibility to get to know the climbing route to the beginning of the glacier (5200 mt). Return to the refuge Whimper by the same way. Lunch picnic and descent to the foot of the giant for dinner and accommodation in a lodge managed by the communal Indian center of the region or optional in a beautiful mountain hostel and sensational panorama over the Chimborazo.

Day 11

Train of the Andes – Quito

Transfer in the morning to AlausÍ train station then short travel in the famous Train of the Andes (around 2 hours) passing the famous Devil’s Nose, an ingenious zigzag system through the beautiful Andean landscape to the terminal Sibambe. Welcome through the local indigenous community who invites you for a snack. . Back to Alausí. Then route to Quito. Lunch free on the way. Installation in the hotel in the historic center of the city. Dinner free.

Jour 12

Quito Flight Back

Transfer to the airport for the flight back. OR extension Amazon or Galapagos Islands

This tour includes:

  • Accommodation in standard hotels 2*/3*, hostels, cabs, lodge, refuge indicated in the program in double room.
  • Breakfast and Dinner indicated in the program.
  • Private transport, transfers and train.
  • English-speaking driver.
  • Guide in the Mountains.
  • Visits and entrance fees to the above-mentioned sites and national parks…
  • Private transport Otavalo – refuge of Cayambe – Quito.

 It does not include :

  • Drinks
  • Private guide (USD 25 per day and person)
  • Other meals (optional on request) and lunches for the driver
  • Personal material (bag pack, shoes, hats etc.)
  • Individual mountain material: crampons, ice axes and harnesses. (Rental on site possible)
  • Extension of Journey in the Pacific coast or Amazon or Galapagos
  • Tips
  • Travel insurance
  • International flights (optional on request)
  • activities mentioned as optional
  • Other services, Luggage carriers (on request)
  •  Single room supplement from USD 100,
  • Supplement half or full board and discounts in case of 5 or more participants on request

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