- Dive into Quito’s rich colonial past in the city’s UNESCO-listed historical core.
- Hop between hemispheres at the Middle of the Earth Equator marker.
- Meeting with artisans and artists in their workshops – Otavalo Markets, one of South America’s oldest and most famous.
- Hike the trails around Cayambe-Coca reserve and indulge in spa treatments.
- Marvel at the series of majestic peaks that line the so-called Avenue of Volcanoes.
- Explore captivating Inca archaeological sites.
- Be charmed by the characterful cobbled streets of colonial Cuenca, a city often dubbed the “Athens of South America”.
- Send your adrenaline into overdrive with adventure activities among Ecuador’s epic landscapes.
- Get hooked on wildlife as you stumble upon unique creatures roaming in their natural habitats.
- Stay at your choice of luxury hotels, lodges and accommodations.
Spot Andean condors, an endangered species and one of the largest birds of prey in the world, at the condor reserve at Espejo. Should you wish to, you can play a round of golf at the nine-hole course nearby or alternatively, take the reins for a horseback ride through the spellbinding countryside.
Afterward, continue your personalized tour of Ecuador at the small village of San Antonio de Ibarra, which has achieved worldwide renown for its woodcarvings and stone sculptures. Admire small yet impressively detailed wooden boxes as well as life-size sculptures of people. Observe the talented artisans chiseling and see in-progress artworks at a workshop.
Return to Quito after lunch.
At this point of your luxury tour to Ecuador, you may be yearning for a little rest and relaxation, which is just what we have in store… Today, you’ll be driven to Papallacta, a natural spa with a particularly scenic setting. From the thermal pools here, you’ll be treated to views of the Andean peaks stretching up into the clouds.
After lunch, opt for further pampering spa treatments or try something a little more strenuous, such as a visit to the Cayambe-Coca Ecological Reserve. The reserve’s landscapes are incredibly diverse, encompassing everything from primary forests and rivers to lagoons and volcanoes, with an astonishing number of animal and plant species too.
Today, you’ll have more free time to enjoy Papallacta – and perhaps indulge in another massage or treatment – before returning to Quito in the afternoon.
Travel south in style with a private car. This journey will take you down the Avenue of Volcanoes, where volcanoes – both sleeping and active – stand tall on either side of the road. At the far end, you’ll arrive at the elegant centuries-old colonial Cienega Hacienda, located close to Cotopaxi volcano. Spend the night at this stylish hotel.
Post lunch, we’ll stop by the Hacienda of San Agustin de Callo, which is one of only two major Inca sites in Ecuador. It was built around 1440 by one of the last Inca emperors, Huayna Cápac, and the perfectly fitted original Inca stonework can still be seen today. After marveling at the Incas’ meticulous masonry skill, move on to an authentic local market, where the smell of spices perfumes the air, and everything from hand-woven ponchos to exotic fruits can be purchased.
Enjoy a day at your leisure to trek through the beautiful Cotopaxi National Park. You might take photos of the perfectly formed cone of the park’s eponymous volcano, Ecuador’s second-highest peak. Or you can go in search of the park’s most interesting animal inhabitants, among them white-tailed deer, rabbit and Andean foxes. Should you wish, you can also try fishing in the nearby rivers or a horseback trek through the reserve.
Sit down for lunch back at the hacienda before returning to Quito.
Your Kuoda host will meet you early in the morning and bring you to the airport for a flight to Cuenca, a city that many consider to be Ecuador’s most beautiful. As you’ll see when you get there, the city is certainly postcard-ready with a coherent ensemble of marble and whitewashed colonial buildings, and a collection of pretty church steeples that punctuate its skyline.
We’ll then travel outside of Cuenca for a private guided tour around the archaeological site of Ingapirca, easily the best-preserved Inca ruins in Ecuador. During the height of the empire, Cuenca was a key power center. Marvel at the tightly fitted low stone walls and the Temple of the Sun, and inspect Inca sculptures, tools and objects at the nearby museum. After lunch, you’ll be driven back to Cuenca to your hotel of choice.
Begin day 10 with an exclusive city tour around colonial Cuenca, whose cobblestone streets, 16th-century houses and striking churches and cathedrals are a vision of period perfection. Inhale the fragrance of fresh blooms at the flower market, which sets this cobbled plaza ablaze on a daily basis.
Once you’ve got your bearings, you’re free to spend the rest of the afternoon wandering around at your leisure or resting at your stylish hotel.
Sun, and inspect Inca sculptures, tools and objects at the nearby museum. After lunch, you’ll be driven back to Cuenca to your hotel of choice.
After an early breakfast, your Kuoda representative will collect you and bring you to the airport. From there, you’ll board a flight to Quito, before catching your return flight home.
Like the sound of this Avenue of Volcanoes tour? Get in touch with Kuoda and we’ll start devising your very own customized Ecuador luxury tour.
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