Andes to Amazon

14 days
from
$2,785 USD
incl. taxes
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Traveller ratings
4.8 / 5 from 44 reviews >
Trip code: 
AAX
Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Tailormade Adventures
Activity:
Culture
Group size:
6–16
Min age:
16

The best of mainland Ecuador: wildlife, jungles, volcanoes and the coast

Stunning Andean scenery, colonial architecture, fascinating Indian markets and verdant cloud forests are just the start. Follow the Avenue of the Volcanoes with great views of snowcapped volcanoes such as Cayambe and Chimborazo, before boarding the 'Devil's Nose' train to switchback down the western Andean slopes. In the Amazon Rainforest we discover the jungle and its incredible biodiversity, before ending at the Pacific coast to discover the mangroves by boat and visit a cacao plantation.

Highlights

  • Visit colonial Quito, the Otavalo Indian market and Cuenca's UNESCO Heritage Reserve
  • Overnight in the peaceful Bellavista Cloud Forest Reserve
  • Two nights to soak up the sounds of the Amazon Rainforest
  • Ride the famous 'Devil's Nose' train
  • Visit the ruins of Ingapirca and Cajas National Park
  • Take a mangrove boat trip by the Pacific Coast and visit a Cacao plantation

Key information

  • 11 nights comfortable hotels, haciendas and lodge and 2 nights standard lodge
  • Group normally 6 to 16, plus leader. Min age 16 yrs
  • Several areas visited are at high altitude
  • Travel by minibus, train and boat
  • Napo Wildlife Centre extension available

What's included

  • 13 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 3 dinners
  • All accommodation (see below)
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)
  • Airport arrival transfers

What's not included

  • Travel insurance 
  • Single accommodation (available on request)
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call for general departures:
1 844 227 9087
Call for tailormade trips:
1 800 267 3347
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Quito.

    The group flight usually arrives into Quito this evening and clients will be met and transferred to the start hotel. Land Only clients can make use of our free airport transfer to the start hotel today - please read the joining information for more details.

    Accommodation: Hotel Vieja Cuba (or similar)

  • Day 2

    Quito city tour; Bellavista Cloud Forest Reserve.

    This morning's short walking tour of Quito is the perfect opportunity to meet your guide and get to know your fellow travellers. The heart of old Quito is a colonial masterpiece and the capital is widely regarded as one of the most beautiful cities in South America, as well as being a UNESCO site. Leaving Quito behind we drive towards the North-Western slopes of the Andes where Bellavista Cloud Forest is located. Situated at the top of the Tandayapa Valley, Bellavista is a private reserve bursting with orchids, bromeliads, toucans, tanagers and hummingbirds. The area is a paradise for naturalists with a vast network of hiking trails.

    Accommodation: Bellavista Cloud Forest Reserve & Lodge (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 3

    Spot birds in Bellavista; to hacienda.

    An early start this morning to appreciate the diversity of Bellavista and spot some of its many bird species. The reserve has previously won awards for its high bird count - there are 20 different species of Hummingbird to look for! Following this morning's excursion we drive towards Northern Ecuador and the beautiful hacienda that will be our home for the next few nights.

    Accommodation: Hosteria Pantavi (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 4

    San Clemente Indigenous Community.

    After breakfast we travel towards the foothills of the Imbabura Volcano where the indigenous community of San Clemente is located at 2900m. The community consists of a number of local indigenous families whose main livelihood comes from farming and agriculture. We have a guided tour by one of the families, who will introduce us to a number of native and medicinal plants, explain traditional embroidery techniques, tell us about their culture and show us the day to day activities that take place within the community. A traditional lunch will be prepared using locally grown produce. This afternoon we drive back to our hacienda with the rest of the afternoon free to relax in the beautiful gardens of Pantavi.

    Accommodation: Hosteria Pantavi (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 5

    Walk at Cuicocha Crater Lake; visit Indian Otavalo.

    Drive to Cuicocha Crater Lake at approximately 3000m. This beautiful caldera (volcanic crater) is about 2 miles/3km wide and was formed over 3000 years ago by a massive volcanic eruption. We start a scenic walk along one section of the lake (up to 3 hours duration) to take in the impressive scenery, before continuing our journey to Otavalo. Otavalo is situated in a valley at 2250m, the town is well known for its bustling Indian Market. There are many of stalls and locals wear traditional colourful clothes - a fantastic introduction to Andean life and a good place to pick up some souvenirs. We have some time to soak up the atmosphere before continuing our journey. Overnight in a 400 year-old colonial hacienda.

    Accommodation: Hacienda SuMerced (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 6

    Visit Papallacta Hot Springs; to Amazon Rainforest.

    A short journey driving over the dramatic (and breathless at 4069m!) Papallacta Pass. Located east of Quito, the Papallacta Hot Springs are regarded as the nicest of all Ecuador. We have some time to bathe in both hot and cold pools as the snow-capped Antisana Volcano (5758m) looms over the horizon.  We continue our journey, driving around the flanks of the Antisana Volcano before the descent into the Amazon Basin to our rainforest lodge. After a short briefing we take a night walk to discover our new surroundings - there are fantastic night time sounds to listen out for, a wonderful experience amidst the humidity of the rainforest. 

    Accommodation: Liana Lodge (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    Rainforest exploration; AmaZoonico Animal Rescue Centre.

    Discover the Amazonian basin on foot. The incredible biodiversity of the rainforest environment will be explained by our indigenous guide, who will show us the most interesting and medicinal plants. There is a good chance of seeing kingfisher, parrot, oropendula and other bird species. Squirrel and Capuchin monkeys can be seen in this area, although other larger mammals are considerably more shy and harder to spot. The insect life is also fascinating, with beautiful butterflies flashing by and Army ants and Leaf-cutters on patrol. Visit the AmaZoonico Animal Rescue Centre where we can see some of the forest's larger inhabitants such as tapir, capibara, pecari and various species of monkey.

    Accommodation: Liana Lodge (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    To Banos; visit Devil's Couldron waterfall.

    Begin the wonderfully scenic drive west along the 'Road of the Waterfalls' with spectacular views of the upper Amazon Basin and the Andes towering above. The climb back to the highlands is mesmerising as we watch the ecology change and the many waterfalls cascade from the high peaks into the lush valley of the Pastaza River. There are good photo opportunities along the way, including a visit at the Pailon del Diablo (Devil's Cauldron) waterfall. We pass through Banos, a picturesque hot spring and pilgrim town adjacent to the 5000m high volcano of Tungurahua. There is some time to explore Banos before we drive to our hacienda in Patate.  

    Accommodation: Hacienda Leito (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 9

    Walk in Chimborazo N.P.; to Riobamba.

    Drive to the region of Chimborazo for a short walk (around one hour) in Chimborazo National Park, located at approx. 4600m. Due to the equatorial bulge the summit of Chimborazo is the furthest place from the centre of the earth! In the national park there are good possibilities to observe vicuñas, a relative of the llama. This afternoon our journey continues towards Riobamba where we stay overnight.

    Accommodation: Hacienda Abraspungo (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 10

    'Devil's Nose' train ride; to Ingapirca and Cuenca.

    Today involves a colourful train ride across the Andes through the steep and famous 'Nariz del Diablo' or 'Devil's Nose' - one of the most difficult railways to have been constructed. If the weather is clear, we can see volcanoes as we chug slowly down a steep series of switchbacks with impressive drops. Afterwards visit the incredible Inca architecture at Ingapirca, the largest Inca ruins in Ecuador. The Inca Empire stretched along the Andes north through Ecuador into Colombia and south through Peru and deep into Chile. Ingapirca has fine examples of their famed brickwork as well as a solar observatory. We descend from the highlands to colonial Cuenca where we stay for the next two nights.

    Accommodation: Hotel Santa Lucia, Hotel Victoria, Hotel Carvallo (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 11

    Half day city tour of Cuenca.

    Like Quito's old centre, Cuenca is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a charming place to explore. A guided tour this morning takes in the remarkably intact old town, where many artisans have taken up residence amidst the narrow colonial streets and famous landmarks. The afternoon is free to discover the town at your own leisure.

    Accommodation: Hotel Santa Lucia, Hotel Victoria, Hotel Carvallo (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 12

    Walk in Cajas N.P.; to Los Chorreras.

    A short drive this morning brings us to Cajas National Park, otherwise known as the 'Gateway to the Snowy Mountains' in local Quichua. This is a stunning area of lofty peaks, lagoons, lakes and rivers amidst pristine paramo vegetation. During a walk of around 2 hours we may encounter some of the 125 bird species recorded here, such as Yellow-billed pintails, Ecuadorean hillstar or Violet-throated metaltail. With good weather we are rewarded with stunning views of this well preserved national park during our walk. We stay in a hotel close to Cajas National Park for our last night in the Andean Highlands before we descend towards the coast. 

    Accommodation: Hosteria Dos Chorreras (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 13

    Mangrove boat trip; visit cacao plantation.

    Today we descend towards the Pacific and visit the Manglares Churute Ecological Reserve where we take a boat excursion through the incredible mangrove forest. This important eco-system has both Red and Black mangrove species and provides opportunities for seeing a number of aquatic birds and other wildlife along the many small river inlets. In the afternoon we visit a cacao plantation to learn about the production of one of Ecuador's biggest exports. After this we travel to Guayaquil, the main port town in Ecuador, for our final evening together.

    Accommodation: Grand Hotel Guayaquil (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 14

    Depart Guayaquil.

    The trip comes to an end today after breakfast and it's time to bid Ecuador and the rest of the group goodbye. Free transfers to Guayaquil airport are available to all clients today. Those on group flights will fly this evening and arrive in the UK the following day. 

Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Post-trip Extensions

Napo Wildlife Centre Extension (XAX)

Code: XAX

Spend four nights in a luxurious eco-lodge overlooking Anangucocha Lake, and experience one of the most biodiverse ecosystems on the planet - the Amazon Rainforest. The Napo Wildlife Centre is one of the best eco-lodges in the Ecuadorian Amazon basin. Located deep within Yasuni National Park, Napo Wildlife Centre is perched on a hillside in the heart of the forest. Its small number of rooms and large private reserve means that visitors have excellent chances of spotting some of the many mammals living in the forest. In this region over 500 species of bird have been recorded, as well as numerous monkey species, tamarins, tapirs, sloths, jaguars (rarely seen), caimans and lizards. The detailed itinerary can be found here.

Please ask your sales consultant for more details. 

Price from: £1699 (compulsory supplement of £760 for sole travellers) 

Essential Info

Visas

Ecuador

British passport holders do not need a visa for Ecuador. Very few other nationalities need a visa for Ecuador, but if you are in any doubt you should contact the nearest Ecuadorian Embassy. 

Vaccinations

Ecuador

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Typhoid and Hepatitis A.

If you will spend any time in the Amazon Rainforest we recommend a Yellow Fever vaccination. Please note that your certificate of vaccination may be inspected on arrival to this region.

Malaria is also a risk in some areas of the country (including the Amazon Rainforest) so we suggest you consult a doctor for more advice. 

Dengue fever and/or Chikungunya are known risks in places visited on this trip. Both are tropical viral diseases spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for either, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. 

Zika fever is a mosquito‐borne viral disease and a known risk in places visited on this trip. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available, we therefore strongly recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. 

PLEASE NOTE: All visitors to Ecuador will be required to show valid medical insurance on arrival and cannot enter the country without it.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts, 5 lunches and 3 dinners are included.

Hotel breakfasts are normally buffet style with toast, cereal, eggs, fruits and tea/coffee all available.

For lunch and dinner, the tour leader will recommend various options in convenient locations, usually booking restaurants and eating with the group. Vegetarians can be catered for but please inform us before departure of any special dietary requests.

Weather

In Quito and the highlands it should be warm by day and generally dry. Maximum daytime temperatures are almost constant throughout the year at 20ºC, nights 8ºC. Some rain can be expected in February to May and October to November but storms, though heavy, are generally short. Quito and in general the highlands, are considered to have quite a pleasant climate, although the evenings can be chilly. In the jungle regions it will be hot with high humidity. There is always a possibility of rain at any time, but not to the extent of spoiling your enjoyment. The driest time in the jungle (in terms of rainfall levels, not number of rainy days) is October to January. On the coast at Guayaquil, the climate is tropical. Between December and April, it is sunny, hot and humid, with daytime temperatures often reaching the mid 30s. As the Humboldt Current moves north, the city tends to be cloudier and cooler between May and November, but temperatures rarely dip below 29ºC.

Is this trip for you?

This trip has been graded 2: Leisurely/Moderate

It will appeal to those interested in the astonishing variety of mainland Ecuador - Spanish and Inca history, Paramo highland, mangrove systems, rainforest, cloud forest and volcanoes. It is a busy trip, taking in a huge amount of scenery, flora, fauna and history in two weeks. Many of the areas visited on the trip are at high altitude and some short walks (normally one to three hours) are planned. A reasonable level of fitness is required for this trip.

Call for general departures:
1 844 227 9087
Call for tailormade trips:
1 800 267 3347
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Hotels, Haciendas & Lodges

11 nights comfortable hotels, haciendas and lodges, and 2 nights standard lodge, all en suite.

Accommodation on this holiday is a real highlight as we stay in a mix of country haciendas (Spanish colonial estate houses), hotels and lodges. The haciendas offer a real retreat with welcoming staff and beautiful surroundings, whether surrounded by gardens or nestled in the mountains. Staying in the jungle is likely to be a memorable experience, our thatched bungalows nestled in the forest and only reachable by boat. Optional single supplement available, see dates and prices.

Call for general departures:
1 844 227 9087
Call for tailormade trips:
1 800 267 3347
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Experts

Contact a member of staff who has done this trip

Call for general departures:
1 844 227 9087
Call for tailormade trips:
1 800 267 3347
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

Embracing a healthy lifestyle can be a challenge, but if you’re going to keep it up there’s got to be more to it than

  • Reviewed January 2019
    Brian Helsdon

    An excellent but busy trip

    This is an excellent tour in a country where variety really is the spice of life. You go from the Andes highands, in fairness this is most of the trip with heights, not including the peaks of 2600 to 3600 metres, to the cloud forest, rain forest and the hot and very humid coastal belt. It is very well designed but there are some long coach days. For example on day ten (to Cuenca) we did not finish until after dark having had two long coach rides. It also helps to be reasonably fit if you are to enjoy the more strenuous walks at Chimborazo and Cajas national parks. There are things I would leave out if I was designing the itinerary. For example there is the AmaZoonica Animal rescue centre which says it is not a zoo but it is really and a crowded and disorganised one at that. The Ingapirca ruins were really a non event and mostly reconstructions. One disappointment was the Mangrove boat trip. It did not happen. This was January 2nd and the boatmen simply did not turn up.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Two moments stand out. The first was the climb up Chimborazo from 4800 to 5000 metres. It was exhausting and exhilarating at the same time. The second was at Cuenca. we were there on new year's eve. Totally unexpected and unplanned we came across a massive parade with local ethnic groups demonstrating their affinity with the deity. There were loads of floats and children and adults in colourful costumes plus music.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Eddie was excellent, extremely knowledgeable and well organised. He was at ease with the group and enjoyed a joke. He had to cope with several issues affecting group members and did so calmly and effectively without this affecting the attention he gave the rest of the group, a real asset.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Outside of the rainy season you don't need a mosquito net for the rainforest. We didn't see any at all. For the rainforest take a bag that is big enough for all the things you will need for two nights in the rainforest. The boat to the lodge is not big enough to take the main bags. Also make sure you have a powerful torch both for the night walk and the room. There are candles but the matches and match boxes provided were useless.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Take plenty of layers. On the last day we went from 3600 metres plus to sea level with temperature changes to match. It was the coldest and hottest day in one.
  • Reviewed November 2018
    Rosemary Muirhead

    Excellent Trip

    We flew in 3 days early to see more of Quito, which was a good idea as had altitude headache first day. Could easily spend more time in Quito. Tour is full on, varied and really good. Poundland ponchos came in useful for showers, even in the hailstorm as we weren’t cold because we were walking. Spent $300 in total. Would recommend to anyone of reasonable fitness. Excellent holiday

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Loved the night walk through the rainforest.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Edi was excellent, best tour guide we have had so far.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Poundland ponchos, deet, if you like wine Clos litre boxes in the supermarkets are great for a pre dinner drink (a box costs $6 which is the same as a glass in the hotels)
  • Reviewed November 2018
    Rosemary Muirhead

    Excellent Trip

    We flew in 3 days early to see more of Quito, which was a good idea as had altitude headache first day. Could easily spend more time in Quito. Tour is full on, varied and really good. Poundland ponchos came in useful for showers, even in the hailstorm as we weren’t cold because we were walking. Spent $300 in total. Would recommend to anyone of reasonable fitness. Excellent holiday

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Loved the night walk through the rainforest.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Edi was excellent, best tour guide we have had so far.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Poundland ponchos, deet, if you like wine Clos litre boxes in the supermarkets are great for a pre dinner drink (a box costs $6 which is the same as a glass in the hotels)
  • Reviewed October 2018
    richard boner

    Wonderful

    Amazon to Andes involves a fair amount of bus time, but the diversity encountered is well worth it. Some exertion is required, since walks of a couple of hours at high altitudes are involved; but anyone reasonably fit will do just fine. Most of the tour is above 8000 feet; two nights in the Amazon are lower, as is the final day around Guayaquil. Mosquitos were (surprisingly) not present except in the mangroves, last day. Ecuador is a very easy and interesting country to visit. People are friendly, and are obviously proud of their ecological and cultural heritage. Accommodations and food on the trip were excellent, and the tour leader was well informed and experienced (20 years). Highly recommend this trip for anyone interested in exploring this wonderful small country.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Really too many to count; it depends on whether one's main interest is in the Various cultures or in the huge diversity of flora/fauna.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Pablo was amazing - highest marks!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don't worry about bugs, mosquito nets, or anything like that. Just come with some dollars for food, tips, and a few souvenirs and an adventurous spirit. You will need a sweater and windbreaker on a couple of occasions (hiking on Chimborazo or in the National Park), but otherwise moderate temps are typical everywhere. Long sleeve shirts are normal, but a couple of short sleeves will also come in handy. Bring a swim suit in case you want to spend 30 minutes on floating down the river.
  • Reviewed August 2018
    Tony Lloyd

    Memorable trip, huge variety, breathless scenery, superb guide.

    Ecuador is a very interesting country, much of it at significant altitude. In March, on day one, on the equator the temperature in Quito at over 2000 metres was only about 20 degrees C but I got quite badly sunburned in just an hour without a hat. The variety of environment was , as indicated by the name of the trip, extreme from canoe trips in the Amazon rain forest to wearing most of my clothes at nearly 5000 metres on Chimborazu.. In the past we have shied away from group trips after some bad experiences but this time it was the people that we were with that helped make the trip more enjoyable. However what really made the trip memorable was our excellent guide Fabien who took us to places that we would never have dreamed of going to and introduced us to fascinating people that again we would never have met without his help. Other than Guayaquil this was one of the best holidays we can remember.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing a full size crocodile launch itself into the river in the Mangrove swamps - too quick to get a photo. I had no idea that crocs existed in South America.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    He was excellent. Despite being under stress from both vehicle issues. (We had to abandon the first minibus after just two days) and domestic issues (his flat in Quito had caught fire because of a defective refrigerator) he remained calm and made sure that we were all comfortable, well informed and well fed. Specifically he took us to fascinating markets, through doors into extraordinary buildings and into roadside sugar processing plants. He had a wicked sense of humour but showed great compassion when one of our party had to return home early because of an unexpected bereavement and when my wife struggled with the altitude.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    1)

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Wear a hat during the day. The mosquito, dengue and yellow fever risk in the part of Amazonia that we visited was minimal to non existent. Don't buy a toy blow pipe. Only an 8 foot long one is accurate enough and powerful enough to amuse your relatives in the UK. Wine is exceptionally expensive. Do try to learn a bit of Spanish before you get there. Consult your GP about tactics to overcome altitude problems. Coca tea is pretty ineffective.
  • Reviewed March 2018
    Miller Alison

    Fabulous Trip

    Absolutely brilliant trip. Everything I’d hoped for. Loads to see and do. Lovely country, lovely people. Interesting and varied accommodation. Great group of travelling companions.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I loved it all - but the stand-out moments were the visit to St Clemente, the time in the jungle and shopping in Cuenca.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Pablo was excellent - extremely knowledgeable, very friendly and highly organised. Mauricio our driver was also fantastic - I always felt very safe on the sometimes challenging roads.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Things I took which I didn’t need! 1. Mosquito net. 2. Expensive and heavy Electricity voltage converter - the cheap 2- prong adapters worked perfectly well. 3. Thermals and too many cold weather clothes - we really only had one activity where extra layers were required and even then only a fleece and light-weight jacket, although a warm hat was welcome. 4. Beach towel - towels are provided for the hot spring swim and tubing.
  • Reviewed November 2017
    Caroline Speller

    Andes to Amazon

    A great trip - to somewhere that most tourists don't visit. Fantastic scenery, lots of wildlife, loads of views of volcanoes and some quirky places to stay. Some days are long but the travel is always broken up with things to see.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I loved the cloud forest - the birds and plants were glorious. Cuenca is a lovely colonial city and it is relatively flat - a nice change as most of the time the trip is up and down hill.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Fabian was the best guide we have ever had. Showed us and told us about the country and its life, stopping the minibus when something caught his eye. He had a fantastic sense of humour. We were looked after but never smothered with too much fuss.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Midge repellant, anti histamine and and sun screen. The midge bites were rare but very itchy. Long sleeves are a good idea. The altitude can take it out of you so tell your guide if you feel rough. Walking poles handy and walking shoes/ boots essential. Warm hat for high altitude volcano walk, sunhat at other times. You need waterproof cover (poncho/mac) for the waterfall but goretex would probably be too hot. Dark swimwear for the thermal baths as the water will dye light colours. Wellies are supplied in the rainforest but your feet can get very sweaty so take several pairs of dry socks. No electric so you need a torch, which you also need for a night walk. You can only take a small bag (not your main bag) to the rainforest.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This is a bit of everything trip - scenery, wildlife, insects, culture, hot, cold, altitude, river, mountains. Accommodation is good but because the days can be long you don't always get to make the most of it. There are a couple of hotels where you stay 2 nights which will do laundry.
  • Reviewed March 2017
    Robert Harris

    Andes to Amazon

    A wonderful introduction to a hugely diverse country in terms of people, culture, nature and landscape. We came expecting a developing country and found a first-world one with a wealth of natural resources.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The diversity of the flora was amazing - particularly ferns and the general greenness of the diverse topography. The constantly changing landscape and ecology that the trip itinerary presented was quite breathtaking.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Pablo Molveda was one of the best tour leaders we have experienced in nearly 20 years of travelling in small groups. He was patient, humorous, knowledgeable, kind and inspired confidence - the perfect guide to a new country.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Despite your grading of leisurely/moderate we found the trip relatively full-on compared with others we have experienced. Whilst we were happy with the pace of the trip, others may find it a little strenuous with respect to activities and the amount of travelling/moving on between hotels and the relative lack of free time.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The driver (Mauricio) was probably the best we have encountered and everyone felt supremely safe in his hands.
  • Reviewed March 2017
    Sheila Oliver

    Andes to Amazon

    This was an amazing journey through all the different regions of Ecuador. We started in Quito, went to the cloud forest, through hot springs, markets in Otavalo, to the jungle, up to Chimbarazo - the point nearest the sun, to the lovely city of Cuenca up to the high plains of Cajas national park, back to the mangroves and dry tropical forest. Our guide and driver were amazing, the food was lovely and I would not believe it was possible to fit so much into two weeks. It was not for the feint hearted - we had very long days of travelling and went up and down in terms of altitude and temperature. Perhaps some shorter drives and longer time in the lovely places we stayed would have made it a bit more like a holiday! Not sure how it could be changed though.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Can't pick out one? I loved traveling down river in the jungle and the Mangroves, and being up in the Cajas National Park. Cuenca was a lovely city and joining in the Mardi Gras celebrations as we went along made the trip very special.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    He was excellent. He was very good at including everyone and dealing with various illnesses suffered by the group. He had heaps of local knowledge.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Keep luggage to a minimum. Lots of outdoor wear clothes which protect from sun and insects. Make sure you are fit for the walks which are quite hard, and be prepared for very long journeys.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Only that cutting out one or two activities or stays may have made it more relaxing. Personally the jungle activities were my least favourite although I enjoyed staying in the lodge.
  • Reviewed November 2016
    Thomas Parry

    Andes to amazon

    Excellent, varied trip

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing a hoatzin.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Eddie was first class, full of enthusiasm and knowledge and a really nice man

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Prepare to enjoy yourselves.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Excellent hotels, esp in Cuenca.

Dates & Prices

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Private Adventures 

Not found the date you’re looking for? We can organise this itinerary as a Private Adventure – just click on the tab above the list of dates and prices, let us know your preferred dates of travel and how many people are travelling, and we’ll do the rest!

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Call us on 1 844 227 9087