School adventures in Ecuador
This is an itinerary full of emotions and discovery opportunities! Starting with the Indian community of Otavalo region and its colorful and lively market, the volcanic lagoon of Cuicocha. Continuing with the Middle of the World & Colonial Quito.
Baños is a special place, here we visit a small rural school, and we experience zip lining and go along the road of waterfalls. The exotic Amazon rainforest is waiting for us. We end our fantastic tour with the adventure of a river rafting.
The highlights of this trip:
- Meeting Indian communities in the Otavalo region.
- A varied range of activities: zip line, rafting, hiking.
- A combination of the most beautiful regions of Ecuador
Day 1: Arrival Quito - Otavalo
Arrival at the Mariscal Sucre International Airport of Quito and transfer to the indigenous village of Otavalo in the Imbabura region in northern Sierra. The diversity of indigenous groups makes it a fascinating cultural melting pot, known for its rich crafts and folk music.
Day 2: Otavalo market - Community - San Clemente
For hundreds of years, Otavalo has hosted on Saturday morning one of the most important market of the Andes. This feast in honor of trade gods is a wonderful journey at the heart of the region’s traditions. In the afternoon we will explore the area inhabited by the Imbayos and Cayambe Indians, who cultivate multiple parcels of fertile lands in a traditional way.
Day 3: San Clemente - Cuicocha - San Clemente
Morning of sharing and cultural exchange. Participation in various rural and craft activities with the inhabitants such as farming, cultivation of fruits and vegetables and making crafts. Transfer to Laguna Cuicocha. ( "Lake of the Gods" in kichaw) located in the crater of an ancient volcano. A trail overlooks the blue and sparkling waters of the lake in the heart of a varied flora.
Day 4: Quito - City Tour - Machachi
Return to Ecuador's capital for the historic center tour. Quito has a delightful climate. Swarming with activity, it is one of the most beautiful cities in South America, World Heritage of Unesco. Transfer in the afternoon to Machachi located near the northern entrance of the Cotopaxi National Park.
Day 5: Machachi - Cotopaxi National Park - Baños
After the entry in the Cotopaxi National Park we find the Andean paramo (treeless highlands, with low vegetation) at the foot of the highest active volcano in the world, which cone covered with snow peaks at 5,897 meters. We cross the park, gradually leaving the herds of wild horses and continue our road towards Baños.
Day 6: Baños
Baños, famous for its hot pools, is a spa town in a subtropical zone at 1,800 meters above sea level at the foot of magnificent Tungurahua Volcano (5016 m). You will always see many visitors seeking a warmer climate than the one in the Andes. Meeting with a local school′s pupils and then zip line over the gorge of the Rio Pastaza.
Day 7: Baños - Wtaterfalls road - Amazon
Today we head towards the Amazon, we will enjoy the spectacular "Road of Waterfalls". This road runs along the gorge of the Pastaza River and offers stunning views over a dozen of impressive water falls. The abrupt ecosystem change is a sign of the arrival at the heart of the earth′s lungs. Arrival at the lodge in the heart of the forest.
Day 8: Amazon
This morning, we leave for a walk in the woods in an area where we can observe a variety of flora, birds, insects and animals of all kinds, colors and shapes! Then different activities are possible depending on the group's wishes: a visit of a rescue center for animals, an Indian community, bathing in a river, boat ride ...
Day 9: Amazon - QuitoGET A QUOTE HERE
This morning you will experience many adventures. Whitewater rafting activity on the meanders of the equatorial forests through the tropical valleys and canyons sprinkled with waterfalls. After the thrills, we head to the Sierra. After passing a col at 4,100 meters in altitude, we arrive in the capital, Quito.
- 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
Zipline Trekking Rafting
Andes & Amazon
Multi-activities level 3 of 5: For keen walker. Several walking days from 5 to 7h. The altitude has ti 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 transport 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
- Hydroalcoholic gel
- Survival blanket
- Long ans light clothes (for mosquitoes protection). Avoid black clothes which attract them more
- Anti-mosquito (type Tropic) and anti-itch cream
- Poncho or rain jacket
GET A QUOTE HERE
No visa is required for nationals of countries of the European Union, Switzerland, USA and Canada for a stay less than 90 days. A passport valid at least 6 months after the travel 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 clothing and spanning).
Ecuador is affected by the Zika virus disease transmitted by bites of Aedes mosquitoes.Incase 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 and 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 naturally adjust 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 to 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 °). 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 disaplying 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.