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Shor trips North Andes - Latin Trails
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Short Trips Noth Andes

Otavalo Market full day

We head 1.5hrs north of Quito to visit the Otavalo indigenous market; the most important indigenous market in South America. On the way, we pass by small villages, the snow capped volcano Cayambe, the San Pablo Lake, and the Imbabura Volcano. The market is the largest of its kind in South America, offering many different kinds of arts and crafts from local communities.

We pick you up at your hotel in Quito at about 8:00 am, from where we head north and pass the Guayllamba Valley, and the city of Cayambe, hurdle below the snow capped volcano with the same name. Along the way, we will see rose plantations.

We then enter into the Imbabura Province, and soon we will pass by the San Pablo Lake and the Imbabura Volcano situated right by it.

At the market, we will find a large gathering of indigenous surrounding communities that compose the Otavalo ethnic group. Learn to bargain for ponchos, sweaters, and local handcrafted goods produced in different small villages, all specializing in their own type of craft.

At the return transfer we take an alternate route passing by Tabacundo; this is a scenic route as we will traverse canyons and cliffs going through the North Andes Corridor.

We reserve the right to modify the itinerary – due to weather conditions, etc. – in the best interest of our clients.

Included

  • Transportation
  • English speaking guide
  • Cayambe traditional biscuits

Not Included

  • Meals
  • Guided tours of the market or surrounding villages.
  • Anything not specified

Rural Community Tourism -2 days

A once in a lifetime experience, you will get to stay at one of our community lodges in a San Clemente Community and spend time with the indigenous family. You will be invited to participate in their daily activities such asr farming. We offer you an in-depth experience of the indigenous side of Ecuador. More days include stress management courses, special treatments and retreats  available upon request.

DAY 1. QUITO – OTAVALO –COMMUNITY TOUR

At 7h00 we pick you up from your hotel and we head to the north of the city, this journey takes around 2 hours. We arrive at the Otavalo market; where indigenous trade gathering can be experienced. We will learn to bargain for ponchos, sweaters, and local handcrafted goods.

A unique experience will be your stay in our rural San Clemente refuge located within the communities. Here the tourist may enjoy a new environment, experience a different lifestyle, and take pleasure in the nearness of nature and traditional living.

DAY 2. COMMUNITY ADVENTURES Choose one of these options:

  • Trekking and traditional agriculture
  • Horseback Riding or biking around the Indigenous Communities
  • Coexistence with indigenous families Karankis

Included

  • Transportation
  • Otavalo Market Tour
  • English Speaking Guide
  • 1 night accommodation
  • Breakfast in day 2

Not Included

  • Meals
  • Anything not specified

Hike Around Cuicocha – Full Day

Cuicocha, part of the Ecological Reserve Cotacachi-Cayapas,  with an altitude of 3,064 m. The bright blue colored lake, located inside a crater under the skirts of the Cotacachi volcano. The beautiful scenery is enhanced by the local flora composed by miniature orchids and other Andean flowers as local animals walk around such as fox, llamas, Andean ducks and even the majestic Condor. Following hiking, you will have the optional opportunity to take a ferry ride around the islets found in the lake.

At 7h00, you will be picked up by our team and we will head directly to Cuicocha, this tour takes around 3 hours. A five hour hike will follow your arrival,  you will be able to enjoy Andean flora and fauna surrounding the lake along as its unique landscape.

The lake, with its crystallised water, has two small islands created by volcanic domes. You will be able to see the snow-capped peaks of the volcanoes Cayambe, Cotopaxi and the craters of Cotacachi and Imbabura. You will start your hike at 3,100 m and you will reach a viewpoint at 3,500 m – from this point onwards you will descend to the level of the lake, which allows you to enjoy different habitats.

Included

  • Private Transportation
  • English Speaking Guide
  • Naturalist guide to hike around Cuicocha Lake

Not Included

  • Speed boat tour around Cuicocha lake $1.20 pp min. 7 people
  • Anything not specified

Otavalo Market & Haciendas – Two days

Otavalo tours, probably one of the most desired tours in Ecuador, this is the best way to experience an indigenous trade gathering in South America. Learn to bargain for ponchos, sweaters, and local handcrafted goods and form part of the old andean wealthy people history by staying at their haciendas.

Day 1.  Quito – Otavalo:   Pick up at your Quito’s Hotel at 8h00. On our way to the Otavalo Market, we will have the chance to stop at Miralago: a scenic lookout point from where we will view of the Imbabura Volcano and the San Pablo Lake. At the Otavalo Market, the most important in South America,  we will spend some time bargaining and trading for ponchos, wool hats and other artisan crafts from surrounding villages. In the afternoon we will visit a beautiful waterfall, visited historically for its natural power. Accommodations, relaxation, and dinner at a historical Hacienda.

Day 2.  Otavalo – Quito:  Visit Cuicocha, a volcanic crater lake, and small indigenous villages. Cuicocha Crater Lake (“lake of the Gods”) is a remote, gorgeous spot with 200m deep clear water. Created by a volcanic eruption about 3100 years ago, it is located in the Cuicocha Volcano at an altitude of 3,200m. Lunch at Cotacachi, a small town where you can buy leather shoes, clothes, and souvenirs in a good prices. Return to Quito. B,L

Included

  • Meals listed in itinerary (B= breakfast, L= lunch, D= dinner)
  • Private Transportation
  • 1 night in selected hotel in Otavalo
  • English speaking guide
  • Entrance fee Cotacachi Cayapas Wildlife Reserve ($1)

Not Included

  • Soft drinks and alcoholic beverages
  • Meals not listed
  • Gratuities and personal expenses.
  • Anything not specified.