On this exhilarating Ecuador tour, explore the expansive Cotopaxi National Park, camping in the shadow of Cotopaxi, the world's highest active volcano. Spend two days hiking, bicycling and seeing the sights of Baños, a charming town filled with waterfalls and panoramic views of high Andean peaks and volcanoes. Your adventure Ecuador eco-vacation continues with rafting on the exciting Jatunyacu, one of the major tributaries of the Amazon. The trip culminates in a fascinating hike through the Amazon rainforest accompanied by an indigenous guide for a truly authentic experience in Ecuador adventure travel.
Arrive in Quito and transfer to your hotel. If you arrive early, we can arrange optional tours of the city and surrounding sites.
In the morning, travel to Cotopaxi National Park where you'll hike with magnificent views of snow-capped Cotopaxi, the world's highest active volcano at 19,225 feet. You'll observe diverse flora and fauna, including perhaps a majestic condor. Visit the sparkling Andean lake Limpiopungo and some of the small villages nearby, before making camp for the night and enjoying a rewarding dinner. (B,L,D)
After breakfast, travel to the colorful colonial village of Baños , nestled within a cloud forest. By bicycle, explore the town and surrounding mountains, stopping for a refreshing dip in the thermal baths and a waterfall along the way. Travel on a beautiful winding road out of Baños to reach El Pailon del Diablo. Dinner and accommodations will be provided at a cozy hotel in the Patate area. (B,L,D)
Called the gateway to the Amazon, this road on the way to Tena offers breathtaking views of the surrounding area. Continue to Puyo and then onto a rehabilitation center for animals of the Amazon such as capybaras, sahino boars, tapirs, water turtles, caimans, boas and parrots. You'll become familiar with Amazon wildlife and be supporting the Center's work. This evening check into your Amazon Lodge, where you will spend the next three nights. (B, L, D)
Today, you'll hike through the Amazon with a knowledgeable local guide who will explain the many medicinal plants, insects and exotic jungle flowers you see in the area. Lunch will be under the waterfall of a beautiful blue lagoon followed later in the afternoon with a refreshing swim before the hike back. A hearty dinner awaits you at the comfortable jungle cabins that are your accommodations for the night. (B, L, D)
Today offers a simultaneously challenging and rewarding adventure. Begin with a short hike to the river pools of the Llangantes National Park, where you'll relax and enjoy the warmth of the Amazon sun. After a short safety briefing, raft one of Ecuador's best whitewater rivers, the Jatunyacu. On this exciting excursion, you'll encounter the class III rapids of Pimpilala, Boulder Garden, and Guides Revenge. Enjoy a delicious picnic lunch on a riverbank before returning to the Amazon cabins. (B, L, D)
Early in the morning, meet the indigenous Quechua guide who will lead you through primary and secondary rainforests, explaining the fascinating surroundings. Rushing waterfalls, interesting wildlife and vibrant flora provide added excitement on this captivating Amazon trek. Along the way, speak with local citizens, learning more about what it takes to survive in the Amazon. After lunch, travel to Papallacta to relax in one of Ecuador's most picturesque hot springs. These springs are renowned for their rich mineral content and the Inca legends surrounding them. Stay overnight at this mystical spot. (B, L, D)
The morning begins with a soak in the invigorating hot springs cabanas, amidst views of the striking Antisana Volcano. In late morning, hike the surrounding trails to explore more of this impressive area. After lunch, return to Quito for the night. (B, L)
Transfer to the airport for your international departure home, marking the end of Southern Explorations services. Galapagos adventures, trip extensions to other regions, or extra days in Quito can also be arranged. (B)
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