The Route of The Lakes in Ecuador - 8 Days

This Route of the Lakes in Ecuador tour will transport you to another world!

Tour Design

Design your personalized Route of the Lakes tour – call us and talk with an expert

Departure Dates

You can start your private tour every day of the year!

Difficulty Level

Easy – Moderate

The Route of The Lakes - 8 Days

This Route of the Lakes in Ecuador tour will transport you to another world full of nature, water and adventure. You will admire the beautiful landscapes of the highlands of Ecuador: the mountains and volcanoes with its lakes and lagoons, like Cuicocha Lake. Here you can hike around this flooded volcanic crater with its twin islets, and admire a specific species of orchids that grow at these very high altitudes. In the south of Ecuador you will visit the dark green Quilotoa Crater Lake located inside an extinct volcano, and the impressive Cajas National Park with more than 232 glacier lakes, geological formations and caves that complement the landscapes.

Highlights

Duration: 10 Days
Departure: Daily
Hotels: First Class Accommodation
Highlights: Quito – Otavalo – Cuicocha Lake – Cotopaxi National Park – Quilotoa Lake – Ingapirca Inca Ruins – Cajas National Park – Cuenca

TOUR ITINERARY

Day 1 Transfer in Quito

When you arrive in Ecuador, you will be met by our representative and transferred to your charming hotel in Quito, where you will receive your full itinerary and information about Ecuador and your trip.

Accommodation: Hotel Mercure

Day 2 - City tour in Quito & the Middle of the World

After breakfast, you will visit “Quito”, the most beautiful and colonial city in South America, declared by UNESCO part of the Cultural Heritage of mankind. First, you will explore the colonial part of the city starting at the Independence square, where the presidential palace, the city hall, the Sagrario church and the Cathedral are. You will then visit San Francisco church and museum-monastery (1535), the San Agustin monastery and the finest example of baroque art in America, La Compañía church (1605) and its breathtaking gilded altars. Your next stop will be the art & crafts gallery of Tianguez and finally, drive up to the Panecillo hill and enjoy an amazing view of Quito from above. On this spot you admire the only winged-Virgin statue in South America. This is a great spot to take pictures above Quito.

After visiting the Colonial center of Quito you will arrive to the Middle of the World Monument and Museum, which is located 25 km north of Ecuador’s capital. There you will find the monument on the equatorial line marking latitude 0° 0´0”, where you will have the opportunity to stand in both hemispheres and take wonderful pictures. Here you can also visit the ethnographic museum on site as well.

Accommodation: Hotel Mercure (Breakfast)

Day 3 - Otavalo Indian Market

Today you will visit the biggest and most colorful indigenous market in Latin America, the famous Otavalo. Here, you will visit its Ponchos market, famous around the world for its colorful tapestries, hand-knitted wool sweaters, native paintings, wood carvings, silver jewelry, woolen and straw hats, and much more, all at bargain prices.

After a great shopping morning, you will arrive to Cotacachi known for its leather works and San Antonio de Ibarra for its excellent woodcarvings. Lunch will be served at a typical nearby hacienda or country inn.

Accommodation: Hosteria Hacienda Pinsaqui (Breakfast)

Day 4 - Cuicocha Lake and Surroundings

Today you will visit Cuicocha, one of the most interesting crater lakes in Ecuador. This active volcano has a lagoon inside its crater as well as 2 small islands. If you like, you can enjoy a boat ride around the crater and listen to the stories and legends of this magical place. After this, you will visit the Peguche waterfalls near Otavalo. On your way back to Quito you will enjoy the fantastic agricultural mosaic of rural Ecuador.

Accommodation: Hotel Mercure (Breakfast)

Day 5 - Cotopaxi National Park

After breakfast your adventure will drive south of Quito to the one of the most beautiful national parks in Ecuador. Here, you will admire the Cotopaxi (19,347 feet) the highest active volcano on earth and its National Park. Afterwards, you will visit the Limpiopungo Lake and admire the Andean moorlands with its highland birds or you can start climbing up to the snow line and arrive to the Cotopaxi’s first shelter, located at 15,744 ft. Lunch will be served at a typical nearby hacienda where you can relax for your next day trip.

Accommodation: Hosteria La Cienega (Breakfast)

Day 6 - Quilotoa Crater Lake visit

Today you will be transferred to a remote mountain region in the western side of the Ecuadorian highlands, where indigenous communities keep crops at altitudes of over 13,120 ft. You will arrive to the dark green Quilotoa Crater Lake inside an extinct volcano (12,497 ft), where you can hike to the crater or just admire the beautiful landscapes. After lunch you will see Ecuador’s highest mountain, the Chimborazo (20,697 ft.) as you travel to Riobamba. Here you will have a brief tour of the city.

Accommodation: Hosteria Abraspungo (Breakfast)

Day 7 - Chimborazo Volcano & Ingapirca Ruins

Chimborazo is the highest volcano and mountain in Ecuador, and the point furthest from the center of the Earth with an altitude of 6263.47 meters above sea level. It is located in the central Andes, next to the city of Riobamba, 150 km southwest of Quito and 145 km from Guayaquil. Due to the Earth’s rotation, the diameter in the equatorial zone is the largest on the entire planet. Thanks to this, if the distance from the center of the Earth is measured, its summit is the most distant point, surpassing by more than two kilometers that of the highest mountain above sea level, mount Everest.

After this you will arrive to the Ingapirca Inca ruins; the most important religious and political complex of the Inca ruins in Ecuador. Afterwards, you will continue your driving to the beautiful city of Cuenca, Ecuador’s third largest city. In the evening you have the night free to wander through this charming city in the south of the country.

Accommodation: Hotel Santa Lucia (Breakfast)

Day 8 - Cajas National Park visit

Enjoy a full day of excursions and hikes in Cajas National Park, one of the highest National Parks in Ecuador (11,483 ft), with more than 232 glacier lakes, geological formations and caves that complement the landscapes. Here, you can be guided through the dried up mashes that were once river and observe large Polylepis forest.

Accommodation: Hotel Santa Lucia (Breakfast)

Day 9 - Cuenca City Tour

Today you will discover one of the most beautiful colonial cities in Latin America “Cuenca” which is located at 2,500 feet above sea level in a valley surrounded by 4 rivers and mountains with colorful countryside. Cuenca is famous for its art and history, admire its beautiful marble Cathedral, its cobblestone streets, and graceful wrought-iron balconies. Enjoy its blossom-filled gardens, flowered plazas and museums and visit its religious art treasures made by its deeply religious and artistic people. The people of Cuenca are known for their great hospitality. After Lunch you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Quito.

Accommodation: Hotel Mercure (Breakfast)

 

Day 10 - Transfer out

After breakfast you will be transferred to the airport for your flight home. (Breakfast)

INCLUDED

Domestic Flights

Private transportation

Hotel accommodation in first class hotels

Tours described in the itinerary

English - spanish speaking guides

Meals described in the itinerary

NOT INCLUDED

International flights

Alcoholic & non-alcoholic beverages

Tips & Gratuites

Personal Expenses

I can enjoy beautiful scenery, historic buildings, haciendas in the country, incredible markets, quaint small towns, great volcanos, I've done all of the above but I have never met so many wonderful people.

Reg Prewitt

USA

2 Steps Contact Us Ecuador

Talk with an expert

(877) 500-1929 Ext 706

Talk with an expert

(877) 500-1929 Ext 706

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