Adventure in Ecuador
A great way to visit Ecuador and its beauty: walking, horsing, biking, canyoning, « zip-lining ».
You will certainly enjoy the market of Otavalo, spending time with a family in a native community, riding a horse at the foot of the Imbabura volcano.
The wildlife of the beautiful region of Mindo will draw your attention, as well as Papallacta and the exceptional Amazon forest. One of the most exciting area for adventure experience is Baños where you will really like the canyoning and zipline overhead the river.
Day 1: Quito - City Tour - Cochasqui - Otavalo
Arrival at the Mariscal Sucre International Airport of Quito. Visit Ecuador's capital, placed in the hollow of volcanoes, and first city declared World Heritage by Unesco. In the afternoon, visit of the pre-Inca archeological site of Cochasqui, pyramids and ceremonial complex. Transfer to the Native village of Otavalo, in the area of Imbabura.
Day 2: Otavalo - San Pablo/San Clemente - Otavalo
From the heights of Lake San Pablo, we go on foot or on horseback towards the indigenous community of San Clemente. We discover this region inhabited by Imbayos and Cayambes Indians who traditionally cultivate their multiple plots clinging to the sides of volcanoes Cayambe, Imbabura and Cusín. Transfer to Otavalo in the late afternoon.
Day 3: Market Otavalo - Mindo
On Saturday, the village of Otavalo offers a wonderful spectacle with its weekly market. Indian people go down from the hills with their felt hats and their characteristic poncho, to trade all that one can imagine. In the morning visit of the animal market and local craft market. Transfer in the afternoon to the heart of the cloud forests of Mindo.
Day 4: Mindo - CotopaxiPungo
Discover the beautiful region of Mindo. Hiking in search of some 600 species of birds living in the lush cloud forests. Early in the afternoon, a course of not less than 10 zip lines will allow us to fly above the trees. Transfer in the afternoon at the gates of the Cotopaxi National Park.
Day 5: Cotopaxi National Park - Baños
Transfer within the national park where we start a beautiful and magical horse ride in the middle of the Andean Paramo (altitude steppe with varied flora) at the foot of the active volcano, the highest in the world, which cone covered with glaciers peaks at 5,897 meters. By late afternoon, transfer to Baños.
Day 6: Baños
Spa town famous for its hot pools and the nearby magnificent active volcano Tungurahua (5,016 meters), Baños is a small paradise where it feels like time has stopped. 100% adventure day with canyoning descent in the morning and zip line over a river in the middle of lush vegetation.
Day 7: Baños - Waterfalls road - Amazon
From Baños toward the Amazon, we will visit the Waterfalls Road with a view of the large canyons. It will take us about 5 hours of an exciting drive to reach our lodge in the forest. We are now in the Oriente, which name refers to the Amazonian part of the country and extends over a little less than half of the country's area.
Day 8: Amazon
This morning, we go for a walk in the tropical forest, where we can observe a variety of flora, birds, insects and animals of all types, colors and shapes. In the afternoon, various activities are possible depending on the group's wishes: a visit of a rescue center for animals, an Indian community, swimming in a river boat ride.
Day 9: Amazon - Papallacta
This morning Rafting activity in the living waters of the Tena region, meanders through forests of equatorial tropical valleys and canyons sprinkled with waterfalls. After this dose of thrills, we leave the Amazon to go to Papallacta, Andean village nestled between Cayambe-Coca and Antizana ecological reserves.
Day 10: Papallacta - Quito - France
After a relaxing day in the hot springs, we leave the hotel for a few hours on the road. After passing a col at 4,100 meters in altitude, we arrive in the capital, Quito. Depending on the flight time, free time and transfer to the airport.
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- Accomodation in double rooms
- Full pension (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
- Free drinking water
- All entries to national parks, churches and activities as mentioned in the intineray
Horse riding Biking Canyoning Zipline Trekking Rafting
Andes & Amazon
Multi-activities level 3 of 5: For keen walker. Several hiking days from 5 to 7h. The altitude has to be taken into account.
In the field
- English speaking tour guide
- A driver for driving the vehicle
- Private bus reserved for the group for the entire trip
Throughout your stay, accommodation is varied:
- Hostels 3-4 stars in cities (local standards).
- Homestay (basic comfort)
- Family inn or cozy guest room
- Lodge in the Amazon
- Breakfast served at the accommodation
- At noon picnic for hiking, restaurant meals the other days
- In the evening, restaurant meals or prepared food at accomodation
Ecuadorians products help ensure varied menus and good quality.
The luggage transport
During the excursions and activities, each participant carries a light backpack containing only personal belongings needed for the day (water bottle, camera, protective clothing, ...). Luggage tranport is ensured by vehicle.
- Passport and photocopies
- Photocopy of certificate of insurance / assistance contract
- Vaccinations record and medical indications
- Currency, credit card => The ideal is to carry personal papers and money in a discreet travel pouch worn under your clothes.
- Universal Adapter
- Flashlight (frontal ideal) and extra batteries
- Sun protection (sunglasses and bag, sunscreen SPF 30 minimum, cap / hat)
- Personal pharmacy (see below)
- Tissues / toilet paper
- Travel alarm
- Toiletries and towel (microfiber type)
- Protective plastic bag (cloth, paper ...)
- Swimsuit (pools Baños)
- A backpack 30L / 50L: this capacity lets you take all you need for a day of travel: rain clothes, warm clothes, small pharmacy, water bottles, snacks, and possibly part of the picnic
- Cream / ointment after sun
- Antibiotic broad spectrum (paracetamol, aspirin ...)
- Disinfectant for wounds (type Hexomedine)
- Set bandages, tape, scissors, blister dressing
- Gel hydroalcolique
- Survival blanket
- Long and light clothes (for mosquitoes protection). Avoid black clothes which attract them more
- Anti-mosquito (type Tropic) and anti-itch cream
- Poncho or rain jacket
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No visa is required for nationals of countries of the European Union, Switzerland, USA and Canada for a stay of less than 90 days. A passport valid at least 6 months after the tavel date in Ecuador is enough.
Travelling with children
The foreign minors are subject to the same obligations as adults. They must hold a passport valid at least six months after the travel date.
We do not offer international flight booking. To plan your route in Ecuador, several international airlines provide transportation to Quito (or Guayaquil), such as Air France (via Bogota or Caracas), KLM, Iberia and Lan (via Madrid), American Airlines, Continental Airlines, Lufthansa, etc ...
No mandatory vaccine.
But vaccination against yellow fever is mandatory if you have previously been to a country situated in endemic areas.
We strongly recommend to update the classic vaccinations: diphtheria-tetanus-polio +/- whooping cough, tuberculosis, typhoid fever, hepatitis A and B.
Yellow fever vaccination is highly recommended if you go to the Amazon or to a province east of the Andes below 2,300 meters in altitude.
Malaria occurs below 1,500 meters, mainly in the Amazon area: classification 3 (high resistance). Antimalarial treatment is necessary. Consult your doctor.
The risk is moderate in the coastal provinces. It is recommended to protect yourself in some areas: Baños, on the Pacific coast and the Galapagos Islands.
Make sure you have in addition preventive personal protection against mosquito bites (repellents, loose and covering clothes).
Ecuador is affected by the Zika virus disease transmitted by bites of Aedes mosquitoes.
In case of pregnancy, the hypothesis of a causal relationship between the event of outbreak of fetal or neonatal microcephaly and infection Zika virus in the mother is likely. It is therefore recommended for pregnant women or for those having a project of pregnancy to consider postponing their stay or to first consult a doctor to be informed about the complications that can occur during infection by Zika virus.
Acclimatization and preventive treatment of acute mountain sickness
We recommend you before your trip to Ecuador to visit a doctor to check your ability to stay at high altitude. Andean reliefs are very marked an altitudes are significant (Quito already at 2,800m above sea level).
Whether on adventure, discovery, trekking or mountaineering tours, routes include acclimatization steps and time required for the body to adjust naturally to the altitude. By following a few simple tips especially the first days (drink regularly, avoid alcohol, overeating, too abrupt efforts ...), you will facilitate the acclimation process and avoid the most common symptoms (headaches, shortness of breath ...).
For more information, visit the Association for Research in Environmental Physiology (www.arpealtitude.org) or the International Medical Service (www.smi-voyage-sante.com)
The currency is the US dollar. Exchange rates (indicative price): 1 € = $ 1.12 or US $ 1 = € 0.89.
Most credit cards (MasterCard, Visa ...) are accepted in Ecuador in department stores. It is possible to make withdrawals * directly to distributors in major cities you will be going during your trip (Quito, Otavalo, Guayaquil, Riobamba, Baños, Cuenca ...). Plan ahead among the major steps to not run out of cash for personal expenses (souvenirs ...). Moreover, it is better to have small denominations (5, 10, 20 $) because the businesses rarely have the exchange.
For stays in Galapagos, only the islands of Santa Cruz and Santa Cristobal are equipped with distributors.
NB: it is difficult to change euros, the exchange is only possible in major cities in banks (limited opening hours) and exchange offices ("casa de cambio").
* Before departure, it is best to consult your bank to know your conditions / fees abroad to avoid inconvenience.
Ecuador is located in the equatorial zone where there is no clear-cut seasons. It is possible to travel throughout the year in Ecuador. The climate is however very variable and unpredictable!
It is generally cool in Quito (15 ° to 25 °), very mild in Cuenca (18 ° to 30 °) and very hot in the Amazon or on the Pacific coast (27 ° to 40 °). In Galapagos, the heat is tempered by the winds that cool constantly the islands (20 ° to 35 ° C).
Ecuador is considered to be one of the safest countries in South America. However, we advise you to avoid, as far as possible, to carry valuables. The risk of theft exists, avoid displaying wealth, be vigilant in crowded places (markets, city centers ...) and leave whenever possible valuables and significant amounts of money in the safes of hotels. Do not hesitate to ask your guide in which places it is necessary to pay particular attention and which ones to avoid.
Each participant must be aware of the fact that the tour chosen may include activities (rafting, hiking, ziplining, biking ...) which may be risky. The service providers selected for those services were chosen for their professionalism and the quality of supervision and equipment. Each activity will begin with a reminder of the safety instructions.
Language & some useful words
In Ecuador, Spanish is spoken by all the population. The Quechua language and local dialects are used in remote locations. English is practiced by persons in relation to tourism (hotels & restaurants of higher category).
We recommend that you bring an adapter because the plugs are flat type 110 volts, as in the United States.
Ecuador is located on the GMT -5. The time is the same in all the country except the Galapagos (- 1 hour).The sun rises around 6am and night falls around 6pm, all year.