Enchanting Ecuador

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Overview

Featuring Picturesque Quito & the Amazon, Papallacta hot springs; then Ibarra & the Liberty Train to Salinas, El Angel Ecological Reserve & Otavalo market
Style Small Group TourTravel with a small, intimate group of 15-24 likeminded travelers escorted by an English speaking guide and/or tour manager for some or all of your journey. More of these packages
24 travelers max, dedicated tour escorts & guides throughout
Departures Scheduled Dates
Price Includes
  • Flights
  • Train
  • Coach
  • Transfers
  • Hotel
  • Meals
  • Guides
  • Round trip flights from Miami to Quito via LATAM Airlines including fuel surcharges and taxes and fees
  • All ground transportation and transfers
  • Accommodations in Superior and Deluxe hotels with private bath
  • 15 Meals: breakfast daily, 1 lunch, 6 dinners
  • Comprehensive guided sightseeing tours including entrance fees
  • Tren de la Libertad (Liberty Train): Ibarra to Salinas
  • Professional English-speaking tour directors and guides
Highlights
  • See Quito’s most important landmarks and the Equatorial Monument
  • Explore the Amazon Rainforest with a naturalist guide
  • Relax in the natural hot springs of Papallacta
  • Enjoy a panoramic train ride on the Tren de la Libertad
  • Discover Afro-Ecuadorian culture in Salinas
  • Shop at the famous Otavalo Market
Departs Miami (MIA) (flight schedule)
Themes ActiveHistory & CultureNature & WildlifeRail Journeys
What to Expect This fast-paced, escorted tour involves a significant amount of walking or hiking, often on uneven terrain, and reaches high altitudes requiring a high level of physical fitness to fully enjoy the trip. This tour also includes long scenic drives between destinations and may have limited rest stops.

Prepare for your trip Already booked? Find everything you need to know before you go, including information about passport & visa requirements, flights, luggage, and more.


Enchanting Ecuador itinerary

For its size, Ecuador thrills its visitors with an amazing variety of experiences. Imagine yourself exploring the picturesque plazas and colonial buildings of Quito's Old Town; floating down the Amazon on a hand-made canoe through lush rainforest; meandering through colorful local markets and villages; spotting exotic wildlife and meeting the local Quechua people; traveling via the Liberty Train to visit a remote Afro-Ecuadorian community; then looking for Andean condors in El Angel Ecological Reserve. All this and more awaits you on our Enchanting Ecuador small group escorted tour. Typical Ecuador tours may cover one or two aspects of this eclectic country, but not many will offer such culturally-rich and encompassing access. It truly is a unique way to experience this South American gem.

Dates, Prices & Options

Departure Dates & Prices

Departures & Prices
per person, double occupancy*
2017 DEPARTURES
Depart / Return Regular Price
Departs: Tue, Nov. 14, 2017
Returns: Wed, Nov. 22, 2017
Nov 14 – Nov 22 $2199 Closed
Departs: Tue, Dec. 5, 2017
Returns: Wed, Dec. 13, 2017
Dec 5 – Dec 13 $2299 Closed

Want to stay longer? We may be able to arrange for you to stay later than the scheduled dates. Contact us about prices and availability. (details)

Options & Fees

Enchanting Ecuador
Rooming Selection
Double Occupancy included
Single Room Supplement +$429

Flights & Departure Cities

Departure Airports
Miami (MIA) included

This package includes round-trip flights from the cities listed above. Please review the flight schedule, especially if you're booking connecting flights.

Coming from somewhere else? Unfortunately, we don't offer departures from cities that are not listed, but you can book your own connecting flights separately.

How to Make a Reservation

To make a reservation, simply select an available departure date and reserve online using our secure booking system. Or call one of our travel specialists at 800-555-5765. But first, check out our Before You Book section.

We only require a per-person deposit payment, which you can pay with your credit card or PayPal account. This deposit will be applied towards the cost of your package, and is generally non-refundable (details). The balance is due 75 days prior to departure (or within 72 hours, if you're booking less than 75 days prior to departure), and can be paid by credit card, PayPal, check or money order.

Deposit
Deposit $600

Itinerary

Day 1: Depart USA/Arrive Quito

Accommodations: 2 nights NH Collection Quito Royal, Quito.

  • Depart the USA on your flight bound for Quito, Ecuador (9,500 feet above sea level)
  • Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel

Day 2: Quito

Included meals: Breakfast & dinner.

  • Panoramic city tour of Quito
  • Visit the Equatorial Monument
  • Welcome dinner at a local restaurant

Convent of San Francisco, QuitoFull Day Itinerary: Today, enjoy a panoramic tour of Quito, arguably one of the loveliest South American cities. Visit the Government Palace and the Monastery of San Francisco, Quito's oldest church and largest colonial building constructed in Latin America. Later, stop at the Equatorial Monument, the Mitad del Mundo ("Middle of the World"), commemorating the exact place where Charles Marie de la Condamine established the Equator, where you can stand with one foot in the northern and one in the southern hemisphere.

This evening, join your fellow travelers for a welcome dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 3: Quito & Ecuadorian Amazon

Accommodations: 2 nights Casa del Suizo, Punta Ahuano. Included meals: Breakfast & dinner.

  • Drive to the Ecuadorian Amazon
  • Stop en route at Guango Lodge, a hummingbird paradise
  • Continue to Punta Ahuano for a canoe ride on the Napo River to the lodge
  • Welcome cocktail and dinner

Casa del SuizoFull Day Itinerary: The Amazonian segment of your tour begins after breakfast today as you set out along a scenic stretch of road overlooking lush green valleys. En route, you'll visit the Guango Lodge, a hummingbird paradise where it is not uncommon to see 10 different species within an hour. You’ll also make a stop at an indigenous market in Archidona.

Arrive this afternoon at Punta Ahuano, a tiny port town on the north bank of the Napo River, where piraguas (canoes) await you for a short ride downstream to your lodge. After check-in, sip a refreshing welcome cocktail.

Day 4: Ecuadorian Amazon

Included meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner.

  • Enjoy a full day of activities at the Amazon lodge

Quechua girlFull Day Itinerary: Enjoy a full day exploring the wonders of the Napo River Amazon region. After a short walk through the jungle, your guide will present you with the itinerary for the day. Some of the activities available include a visit to a Quechua family, nature hikes and river rafting or tubing along the Napo River. The activities for the day will be determined at the discretion of the tour guide to best fit your group’s abilities and interests. Time permitting, other independent activities may be available at additional cost.

Day 5: Ecuadorian Amazon & Papallacta Hot Springs

Accommodations: 1 night Termas de Papallacta. Included meals: Breakfast & dinner.

  • Return to Punta Ahuano by canoe and continue to Papallacta
  • Enjoy a relaxing bath in the thermal hot springs

Termas de PapallactaFull Day Itinerary: After breakfast, set out on canoes again to return to Punta Ahuano. Continue by coach along the scenic Andes Mountain range to Papallacta, a small town tucked away in a high Andean valley (11,000 feet above sea level). Enjoy a relaxing stay at a spa-resort, located around thermal hot springs.

Day 6: Tren de la Libertad (Liberty Train): Ibarra to Salinas

Accommodations: 2 nights Hacienda Piman, Ibarra. Included meals: Breakfast & dinner.

  • Travel to Ibarra to board the Liberty Train
  • Enjoy the train ride to Salinas
  • In Salinas discover Afro-Ecuadorian culture
  • Return to Ibarra for dinner and overnight

Cathedral of IbarraFull Day Itinerary: Set out early this morning toward Ibarra, the “White City” to board the Tren de la Libertad (Liberty Train), which will take you through seven tunnels dug with pick and shovel and over tall bridges across steep canyons, on a unique journey to Salinas, where you will be received to the tune of la “bomba”. In Salinas you’ll discover colorful murals commemorating the history and culture of Afro-Ecuadorian people. Visit its museums and shops and enjoy the local cuisine in a trip full of memorable experiences. Return to Ibarra for dinner and overnight.

Day 7: Ibarra & El Angel Ecological Reserve

Included meals: Breakfast & dinner.

  • Panoramic tour of Ibarra, the “White City”
  • Visit El Angel Ecological Reserve
  • Return to Ibarra for dinner and overnight

El Angel Ecological ReserveFull Day Itinerary: At 7,000 ft above sea level, Ibarra is a clean, freshly painted colonial city, capital of the province, is also known as the “White City”. It has a population of approximately 110,000 and enjoys one of the best climates of the Sierra. Today visit El Angel Ecological Reserve. Located in the canton of Espejo, the reserve is home to a variety of plant and animal species. Forests of Frailejones, a type of thick stalk sunflower, make some areas appear as an alien landscape. Be on the lookout here for condors and hummingbirds. Return to Ibarra for dinner and overnight.

Day 8: Otavalo & Quito

Accommodations: 1 night Wyndham Quito Airport Hotel. Included meals: Breakfast.

  • Explore the famous market at Otavalo
  • Return to Quito Airport for overnight

Otavalo womanFull Day Itinerary: Today you'll experience Otavalo, whose beauty lies in its people, the Otavaleño Indians, and their market, undoubtedly one of the best in all of Latin America. The market takes place in Otavalo’s main plaza, but don't hesitate to wander into the side streets, where the goods on display diversify and the prices are lower. Enjoy the cacophony of sounds as Andean pipe music mixes with Spanish and native Quechua voices, complemented by an explosion of color from the many fabric, fruit and other stalls.

Time permitting, explore Lake Cuicocha and another nearby village, Peguche, known for its traditional weavings. Return to Quito for overnight.

Day 9: Depart Quito/Arrive USA

Included meals: Breakfast.

  • Transfer to the airport for your return flight
  • Arrive in the USA later today
  • NOTE: Passengers returning to New York (JFK) or Los Angeles (LAX) have an overnight flight arriving the next day.

The high altitudes reached on this trip (up to 11,000 feet above sea level) and the amount of walking involved, often on uneven terrain, requires that you be in good physical condition to fully enjoy the trip. We strongly suggest that you consult your physician if you have any concerns regarding your ability to handle these conditions.

Reviews

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This was our first ever group tour package... and we'll definitely consider another with Friendly Planet based on our experience! The accommodations are all high quality and unique; hotel service outstanding. Our enthusiastic guide, Vivian, and capable driver Jose, were warm, hospitable, knowledgeable ambassadors for their country. Vivian enjoyed maximizing our experiences whether it was at a simple ice cream stop or describing in detail church art treasures. And she's lots of fun! Highlights for my husband Harris and I were the two amazing days spent at Casa del Suizo in Amazonia. Our local guide, Ramon, welcomed us into his culture and literally made the jungle come alive letting us sniff aromatic termite nests or offering us freshly cut jungle hearts of palm to eat. And then there was the blow dart tournament...

Deborah Samuels, New Smyrna Beach, FL

Before You Book

Before You Go

Prepare for
your trip

Find everything you need to know before you go, including how to pay your balance due, and information about passport & visa requirements, flights, packing & luggage, and more.

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