Category: Blog

How to get to Cotopaxi?

Posted By : Best Trip Ecuador/ 221

Cotopaxi National Park is a protected area of ​​Ecuador that is located in the province of Cotopaxi. The park is home to the famous Cotopaxi active volcano which is an elevation of 5,897 meters above sea level. It is the second highest volcano in the country and one of the highest active volcanoes in the world. For these reasons, Cotopaxi is one of the favorite destinations for tourists when visiting Ecuador. If you have plans to go to Cotopaxi from Quito, and still do not know how to get there, in this note we will give you directions so you can get to this amazing destination of Ecuador.

Cover photo by: Elijah Lovkoff – skylark

By bus

To get to Cotopaxi National Park, you have to go to Quitumbe Bus Station (Terminal Terrestre de Quitumbe) which is located in the south of the city of Quito. Once there you can take any of the buses that leave for the province of Cotopaxi (Latacunga) or the province of Tungurahua (Ambato), since these will necessarily leave you on the way to Cotopaxi National Park. Once there, you can hitchhike or walk to the entrance of Cotopaxi National Park. The walk can take around 01H20 to 01H30. It depends on your physical conditions.

By car

Cotopaxi National Park is located at 33 km from the city of Latacunga, and 50 km away from Quito. The park is connected to Quito and Latacunga through Pan American Highway. If you depart from the city of Quito, you must reach kilometer 42 and take the detour to enter the park. From the detour, it will take you 15 minutes to get to Caspi Control Income. The area has parking lots.

Another option to get to the park is to take the Pan American Highway and enter the city of Machachi to Güitig’s town. From there, you should go to Pedregal and in 20 minutes from that point you will find the guard house of Cotopaxi National Park.

Cotopaxi Tour from Best Trip Ecuador

Best Trip Ecuador offers Cotopaxi Tour. We will take you to know the famous Cotopaxi National Park. Once in the park, you will enjoy the landscape of the Andean moor, the volcanic soil, and the lagoon that emerges from the snowy mountains. In the park area, you can admire flora species and, with a bit of luck, animals such as: wolves, rabbits, bears, condors, and others that live in that territory.

We will take you to Mariscal Sucre Interpretation Center, known as the Park Museum, where you can familiarize yourself with all the information related to the National Park. This center is located within the Mariscal Sucre Station (or Control Caspi entrance).

Photo by: Tomás León – tvtommyec

After that we will walk to José Rivas Refuge located at 4,864 meters above sea level. This is the refuge that welcomes the mountaineers who are preparing to climb to the top of Cotopaxi Volcano. The refuge is located on the slopes of the volcano, and it is an hour and a half walking from the parking lot.

Later and back to the vehicle, we will take you to lunch in a ranch of the area where you can eat the daily menu or the vegetarian option. Finally, we will take you back to the city of Quito to disembark at the same boarding pick up points at approximately 7:00 p.m. Remember that in all our tours, you will always be accompanied by a Bilingual Guide (Spanish – English).

Photo by: Alejandro Miranda – alejomiranda

Regardless of the way you get to Cotopaxi be sure to visit this unforgettable destination of Ecuador that is recommended to visit especially between the months of July to December. We are sure that Cotopaxi Volcano and Andean Paramo will surprise you for its unique beauty.

How to arrive to Papallacta?

Posted By : Best Trip Ecuador/ 398

Papallacta is a parish located in the province of Napo and it is located 67 kilometers east of the city of Quito. This parish is well known for the existence of thermal waters and its beautiful lagoon. In addition, Papallacta is surrounded by moors with a range of species of flora and fauna. This is why this a place of high interest for local and foreign tourists.

Papallacta is located at 3,300 metres above sea level and has a cold Andean climate. The average temperature in the area is 14° C (57° F). This fact makes of this place a perfect destination to enjoy the wonderful natural thermal waters.

Among travelers, it is common to wonder how to get to this destination. For this reason, we tell you about different ways to reach Papallacta.

By bus

If you are in the city of Quito, there are some bus companies that will take you to Baeza. First of all, you have to go the bus station of Quitumbe which is located in the south of the city. You will travel through Cumbayá, Tumbaco and Pifo along the Interoceanic highway until you reach Papallacta.

You could also choose to arrive at Río Coca Transfer Station, located at the north of the city of Quito. From there, the buses (of green color) depart for Cumbayá. At the Supermaxi or Scala Shopping Mall stops you can take some buses companies that will take you to Papallacta.

On the other hand, if you are in the Amazonian region of Ecuador, specifically in the city of Tena, you can take a bus that takes you to Papallacta. If Papallacta is not the final destination of the bus, for sure, they will make a stop when they reach Papallacta.

The trip from Quito to Papallacta by bus is not long since you will travel less than 70 km. So it will lasts approximately 02h00, while from Tena it could take you about 03h00.

All these transports will take you to the town of Papallacta. To reach the thermal water pools you will have to do a walk from 00h45 to 01h00 approximately depending on your physical condition. This trek is considered of medium difficulty or medium high level because it is through a pronounced slope.

By car

If you choose to travel in a private vehicle, Papallacta is approximately 01:30 from the city of Quito and 02:30 from the city of Tena.

To get from Quito to Papallacta, you must take Simón Bolívar Avenue and Ruta Viva towards E28C in Puembo. Then you must drive from E20 to the province of Napo and finally you must take the old road to your destination in Papallacta.

Full day tour

Best Trip Ecuador offers you a simple, safe and funny way to get to Papallacta through its Papallacta Tour. Leave your mobilization and fun in our hands!

We have 3 main pick up points around the city of Quito and the tour starts at 09:00 am. After an entire day of relaxation and fun, we will be back to the city of Quito at approximately 7:00 p.m. We will disembark the passengers at the same boarding points.

Come with us and enjoy the Papallacta Tour! You will visit the viewpoint of the Papallacta lagoon, you will take a guided walk along the trail called La Isla (it is a paved road that follows the path of the Cosanga River), you will swim in the SPA pools at the Termas de Papallacta (hot springs pools) and you will enjoy the steam caves.

We are sure that Papallacta will delight you! Its wonderful landscapes will take your breath away and its thermal water pools will make you feel relaxed and absolutely renewed.

How to get to Quilotoa?

Posted By : Best Trip Ecuador/ 534

uilotoa lagoon is considered one of the most beautiful lagoons of volcanic origin in the whole world. It is located in the Ecuadorian Andes specifically in Pujilí, in the province of Cotopaxi. Quilotoa volcano, which is home to this magical lagoon, always surprise to those who visit it not only because of the variety of colors of its waters, but because of the extraordinary nature of the site. For this reason, we want to give you some indications about how to get to this place.

How to arrive to the lagoon?

There are several alternatives and ways that are useful to arrive and visit this incomparable place. We will tell you how you can get to Quilotoa and its lagoon.

By bus

To move to Latacunga, capital of the province of Cotopaxi, you can opt for public transport that depart from the city of Quito from the bus station “Terminal Terrestre de Quitumbe”, located in the south of the city. This trip lasts between 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Once you are in the city of Latacunga, you can take a bus to the town of Zumbahua (64.33 km) -approximately two hours away-. Zumbahua is the closest community to Quilotoa. There are bus companies which daily and at different times make transfers to this town. From Zumbahua you only have approximately 15 kilometers to your destination. You can go by bus, pick-up truck or bicycle.

By car

A good option to get to Quilotoa volcano and its lagoon is through a private vehicle. From Quito the distance to Quilotoa is approximately 178 km. First, from the city of Quito, you must go to the city of Latacunga through the Pan-American Highway. This section of the trip can take between 45 minutes to 1 hour. Once in the capital of Cotopaxi, you should take the Pujilí-La Maná Road until you reach the parish of Zumbahua. From there you must travel 15 kilometers more and you will arrive to Quilotoa lagoon. Once on the site, you can easily find parking for your vehicle.

Day trip

Best Trip Ecuador offers you a safe, easy, and fun way to visit the Quilotoa, where you can enjoy an all-inclusive Day Trip, which departs from the city of Quito every Friday at 07:50 a.m. and returns to the city at approximately 19:00 p.m. With the aim of expanding the possibilities of boarding option for our passengers, before starting the tour we pass through 3 main points of the city. Our first stop is in the North of the city, at the sale point located on the United Nations Boulevard (07h05); then we go to the sale point located in the sector of “La Mariscal / Plaza Foch” (07h25), and finally we make our third stop at Quinde Visitors Center located in the Historic Center next to “Plaza Grande” (07h50). At 7h50 a.m. we start the tour.

 

Among the activities contemplated in the Quilotoa Tour by Best Trip Ecuador, you will visit the viewpoints of Shalalá and Quilotoa, as well as you can make the trekking to Quilotoa Lagoon. After these activities, there will be a visit to the craft workshop in the community of Tigua, and finally, you will go yo the pottery in the parish of La Victoria. We start the return route to the city of Quito at approximately 19:00 p.m. The passengers can disembark at the same boarding points.

 

 

 

Find out more about the Quilotoa Tour at the following link: Quilotoa Tour by Best Trip Ecuador

The tour includes: transportation, bilingual guide (Spanish – English), lunch, and tickets to the community of Tigua and the pottery located in the parish of La Victoria. Also, passengers are recommended to bring a coat, hat, scarf, sunglasses, shoes with a wrought-iron plant, sunscreen, and a camera.

Imbabura touristic attractions

Posted By : Best Trip Ecuador/ 282

Located in the North of Ecuador, Imbabura is recognized for its impressive natural attractions, its gastronomic richness, and its unprecedented ancient traditions.

The huge tourist potential of this province makes it one of the most visited of the country, and a destination that you have to visit during your stay in Ecuador.

Best Trip Ecuador takes you to see this majestic province with our Otavalo Tour. This tour lasts about 10 hours, and you will a chance to visit the main attractions of Imbabura.

Departures are every Wednesday and Saturday from Quito.

How to get to Imbabura?

You can take the specialized tourist transport from these three main pick up points:

08h05. Quinde Visitors Center / Plaza Grande: located in the Venezuela St. and Espejo St., in the Historical Center.

08h25. La Mariscal / Plaza Foch: located on the Reina Victoria St. between Calama St. and Foch St.

08h50. Boulevard Naciones Unidas Ave.: located on Bulevar Naciones Unidas and Shyris Ave. (across the street from Banco del Pacífico).

Main Activities During The Tour

First stop: The Quitsato Solar Clock

Have you ever been asked if you can be in two places at the same time? In Ecuador, the answer is yes. The real crossing point the Equatorial Line is in Quitsato, the first monument in the world to be built on the basis of space, as this platform can be observed by satellites.

Beyond being a tourist attraction, the Quitsato Solar Clock is also a cultural research community project which aims is to share with the public the knowledge, customs, and cuisine of the Pre-Inca cultures.

Visit the San Pablo Lake Lookout

The Lake San Pablo, located just 4 km. from the city of Otavalo, is the largest lake of the province of Imbabura. During the tour, we will visit the most important lookout of this lake located in Gonzales Suárez, Eugenio Espejo, and San Rafael townships. This lake is located at height of 2.660 m.a.s.l. with an average temperature of 12° C.

From this lookout, you can appreciate the imposing “Taita Imbabura”, a volcano of 4.560 m.a.s.l, and a cultural reference from the local community. Around this volcano they have created several myths and legends.

Visit the “Plaza de los Ponchos”

Otavalo shows its most colorful face on the crafts market, a beautiful place popularly known as “Plaza de los Ponchos”. This is one of the most visited attractions in Imbabura and is distinguished by a set of tents and stalls exhibiting handicrafts of different materials, as well as jewelry, wool clothing, blankets, and musical instruments. The miscellaneous come from various cultures and provinces of Ecuador such as Cotopaxi, Chimborazo, Napo, Loja, and Manabí. Here the prices are comfortable and ‘dribbled’, meaning that you should bargain.

In the Plaza de los Ponchos, you will be able to find fruits, vegetables, grains, and typical dishes such as hornado, potato tortillas or cooked sweet corn.

Walk towards the Peguche Waterfall

The Peguche Waterfall is located in the community of Faccha Llacta, 1.5 km from the community of Peguche, and 3.3 km from the city of Otavalo. It is located at a height of 1.821 m.a.s.l., and has an average temperature of 12° C. This waterfall is 30m high and 6m wide. It forms on steep slopes.

During the Inti Raymi festival, the Peguche waterfall is the ceremonial center where the ritual of purification takes place.

Boat ride in the Cuicocha Lagoon

Thousands of years ago, a strong eruption of the Cotacachi volcano formed a crater creating inside the today known: Cuicocha Lagoon. Its name comes from the kichwa expressions “tsuish kucha”, which translated means lagoon of the gods.

The Cuicocha Lagoon is a sacred site visited by shamans every summer solstice to perform their own purification baths.

There are two islets inside the lagoon: Teodoro Wolf and Yeroví, the same ones that are separated by the “Canal de los Ensueños”.

This lagoon, located in the Cotacachi canton and located within the Cotacachi-Cayapas Ecological Reserve, is just 14 kilometers from the city of Otavalo and is one of the most visited sites in the province of Imbabura.

You can admire the islets up close by a canoe ride or from the lookouts of Cuicocha Loma and Antenas. Please know that this visit is not offered on holidays/festivities.

Return to the city of Quito

We will be back in Quito at approximately 7:00 pm. The bus will stop at the same pick up points.

Value of the tour?

    • USD 60 for adults (nationals and foreigners) who are over 12 and under 65 years-old.
    • USD 40 for children up to 12 years old, senior citizens (65 years old and older), and people with disabilities (ID will be required).

    The tour includes:

    – Tourist transport
    – Bilingual guide (Spanish – English)
    – Entrances to the tourist attractions
    – Mini snack

    The tour does not include:

    – Unspecified details
    – Lunch/Dinner (Meals)
    – Tips

What do we recommend you take for this tour?

We recommend our passengers to bring: sunglasses, hat, coat, comfortable shoes, sunscreen, camera and insect repellent. In addition, we suggest that you bring your passport to be stamped at the entrance of the Solar Clock Quitsato.

For more information and detail of our activities, you can go to our link: Tour Otavalo

Ingapirca Ruins

Posted By : Best Trip Ecuador/ 314

Ingapirca, located in the southern Andes of Ecuador, specifically in the province of Cañar, is an archaeological complex of Inca origin. It is located at 3,160 metres above sea level and is 26 miles away from Azogues, capital of the province of Cañar. It is also 55 miles at the north of the city of Cuenca.

Ingapirca is the sacred place of the Inca occupation in Ecuador. It is considered the most important pre-Columbian archaeological site in the country and the best preserved Inca architectural complex in Ecuador.

Ingapirca is a Kichwa word that means “Wall of the Inca”. This construction is a magnificent example of how the Cañari-Inca culture was like. It has an area of ​​four hectares and was an important religious, political, scientific, military, and administrative center during the Inca conquest.

Best Trip Ecuador invites you to visit the largest and best preserved archaeological complex in Ecuador. Through our Ingapirca Full Day tour you will enjoy a unique experience in the province of El Cañar.

Photo by: Wikimedia Commons, By Bernard Gagnon – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

The ruins of Ingapirca are composed by a cemetery, solar observatories, roads, warehouses, priests’ apartments and an indigenous plaza. In Ingapirca the buildings are made of stones perfectly carved and joined with natural mortar.

In the archaeological complex, the Temple of the Sun or Castle is considered as the main nucleus of the place. In addition, this temple has an oval platform unlike the rest of settlements that are arranged in circular shapes.

Ingapirca is a place that has to be seen because it is part of the Qhapaq Ñan – Andean Road System. Moreover, Ingapirca concentrated the Cañari culture (500 A.D.) and united diverse cultures through the Tahuantinsuyo. Ingapirca as well as Machu Picchu in Cusco (Peru), symbolises the power of the Inca civilization.

Ingapirca offers us a view of the past and allows us to know the Cañari and Inca cultures. Surprise yourself with the different construction techniques of the temples, as well as the precision of the solar calculations and the aqueduct system.

We invite you to read this post were you can find 5 interesting things about Ingapirca.

Photo by: Wikimedia Commons, By Cayambe – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

This fantastic archaeological complex can be visited from Monday to Sunday from 09:00 to 17:30. The estimated time of the complete tour is one hour. A simple, safe and fun way to get to know this wonderful place is through Ingapirca Full Day tour which departs from the city of Cuenca. You will visit not only the ruins of Ingapirca, but also the Cañari Indigenous Market (Sundays) and Biblián Church (located in the Zhalao’s hill, sanctuary of the Virgin of Rocío).

How to get to Misahuallí from Quito?

Posted By : Best Trip Ecuador/ 155

In this note, we want tell you how to get to Puerto Misahuallí (a parish that belongs to Tena in the province of Napo) from the city of Quito.

Cover Photo by: Instagram @midlandtravel

By Public transport

In Quitumbe Terminal, located in the south of the city of Quito, you must take a bus that goes to the city of Tena. The trip by bus can take approximately 05h00, depending on the weather and traffic conditions. Once in Tena, you must go to Misahuallí in another bus. This track takes between 30 to 35 minutes.

By car

The trip by car from Quito to Misahuallí can take around 03h30 to 04h00. You must take Baeza Road, then the Pan-American Highway/ E45 (Troncal Amazónica). During the trip you will pass through Papallacta, Baeza, Archidona, and finally, you will arrive at Tena. From there you must drive to Misahuallí on a road which is in good conditions.

Go to Misahuallí with Best Trip Ecuador

Best Trip Ecuador offers you a simple, safe, and fun way to get to know Misahuallí through Misahuallí 3D / 2N Tour which has daily departures.

Day 1

We will take you comfortably in our tourist transport to Misahuallí, where we will take you to your hotel. After having lunch, we will start trekking through our reserve in the middle of the jungle with our ingenious guide, who will share all his knowledge and experiences in one of our trails, called: “El Gran Cacique” (The Great Cacique). We will return to the hotel and before the sunset, we will cool down as we descend in buoys with life jackets from one of our beaches on Pusuno River. Dinner and accommodation.

Day 2

Option 1. After breakfast, we will make an excursion to one of the waterfalls in the area. In the afternoon, after lunch, we will move to an Kichwa Indigenous Community, we will learn about their Shamanic customs and rituals. Back to the hotel, we will stop to feed the playful monkeys that live on the beach of Puerto Misahuallí. Typical dinner and night walk.

Option 2. After breakfast, we will take a walk to Napo River, where we will sail in motorized canoes along the river to AmaZOOnico Animal Rescue Center. Once there, we will observe endemic animals of the jungle, which in their natural state are quite difficult to find. We will have lunch (Box Lunch) along the river; then on the Traps Trail we will learn how to build hunting instruments and survival tools using only the forest materials. Typical dinner and night walk.

Day 3

Finally, on Day 3 after breakfast we will make the Chocolate Tour. With the cocoa beans collected in the region, we will have a fun workshop where we will actively participate in the homemade process of chocolate making and tasting.

Find out more about our Misahuallí 3D / 2N Tour at: https://www.besttripecuador.com/tours/misahualli-3d2n, a great way to get to Misahuallí and enjoy this unforgettable destination of the Amazon Region of Ecuador.

Things to do in Quilotoa Loop

Posted By : Best Trip Ecuador/ 223

Quilotoa Loop is a natural attraction located at 15 kilometers from Zumbahua, and it is characterized by the strong and icy winds. The crater of the inactive Quilotoa Volcano forms a bowl that collects the turquoise waters of the lagoon, and their color is due to the accumulation of sulfur. In this note, we want to give you information about what to do in Quilotoa Loop once you visit it.

Cover Photo by: Instagram @alvarodaniell

Visit Shalalá and Quilotoa Viewpoints

When you arrive at Quilotoa Loop you can not miss Shalalá and Quilotoa Viewpoints. Shalalá Viewpoint has a transparent structure, from that point it is possible to see all the grandeur of the lagoon and admire the beauty of the nature from 3.900 meters above sea level. You can not only take a great picture of the place but also enjoy the view of the turquoise waters of the lagoon. Also, when you arrive at Quilotoa you must visit Quilotoa Viewpoint (the community’s viewpoint) from which the view is equally fantastic.

Photo by: Instagram @ecuadorentusojos

Hike and Visit Quilotoa Loop

From Shalalá or Quilotoa Viewpoint, it is possible to descend to the lagoon. The descent is not complicated, however, the ascent is a bit difficult if you do not have good physical condition. In case this happens, you can go down and get on a mule, a service that is offered by people from Quilotoa Community. No matter how you do it, once you get to the lagoon, the landscape will be simply fantastic.

Photo by: Instagram @vanessaalina_

Visit an Artisan Workshop in Tigua Community

Between Pujilí and Zumbahua, very close to Quilotoa Loop, there is an indigenous population called Tigua. In Tigua is common to find artisans who are dedicated to make paintings, masks, and other handicrafts that have geometric and figurative forms. Yo will find wonderful masks made of pine wood, and paintings created on sheepskin which tell the experiences of everyday life. You can not miss seeing the laborious work of these skilled artisans.

Visit Toachi Canyon Lookout

Toachi River Canyon, located at 10 kilometers from the parish of Zumbahua, is a gigantic ravine that covers almost 30 kilometers in length with a drop of 100 meters. This place offers an unusual Andean landscape as a result of the eruptions of Quilotoa Volcano. Toachi River is inside the canyon, which is a good place to practice rafting. Toachi River Canyon is a place that deserves to be seen.

Go to Quilotoa Loop with Best Trip Ecuador

Best Trip Ecuador invites you to visit Quilotoa Volcano and its beautiful lagoon through our Quilotoa Tour. Travel in a fun, safe, and comfortable way onboard our tourist bus. You always will be accompanied by a Bilingual Guide (Spanish – English).

Our tour includes tourist transport, all entrances, and lunch. Do not miss the opportunity to visit one of the most beautiful lagoons of volcanic origin in the world, you will not regret it!

5 interesting things about Ingapirca

Posted By : Best Trip Ecuador/ 114

Ingapirca Ruins are located in the south of Ecuador, in the province of Cañar. These ruins are considered the most important Pre-Columbian archaeological place in Ecuador. For this reason, we want to tell you about 5 curiosities of Ingapirca Ruins with the desire that if you have not done it yet, you visit this fascinating destination of Ecuador.

Photo by: Instagram @demochilaecaneca

What does Ingapirca mean?

Ingapirca is a Kichwa word that means “Inca wall”. In this important Archaeological Complex, the buildings were made with perfectly carved stones, and joined with natural mortar.

Photo by: sebastian_photos

What is the main attraction of Ingapirca Archaeological Complex?

In Ingapirca Archaeological Complex, the most significant building is the Temple of the Sun, also known as Castle. It has as an elliptical shape and was built around a large stone called Pacarina, which was a Cañari ceremonial temple. The Temple of the Sun and its walls are samples of the Inca culture since these were sun worshipers, while the city’s puma design and the half-moon shape of the Archaeological Complex are manifestations of Cañari civilization, as these were moon worshipers.

Photo by: Instagram @megalithicmarvels

Ingapirca is a symbol of the Inca domain

Ingapirca was a place of concentration of Cañari culture (native of Ecuador) and Inca culture. This place constitutes a symbol of the dominion of the Incas before the Spanish colonization of the Americas. It was “an important ceremonial zone, which linked up diverse cultures through Tahuantinsuyo and became, just like Machu Picchu in Cuzco (Peru), a symbol of the power of Inca civilization”. Source: Instituto Nacional de Patrimonio Cultural, 2019.

Ingapirca and the culture mixing

Inca invasion caused Ingapirca to become an important religious, political, military, ritual, and administrative center. It also fulfilled “an astronomical calendar function […] for programming and controlling the regional agricultural production calendar”. Source: Ministerio de Turismo, 2019.

In Ingapirca coexisted both Cañaris and Incas, hence a culture mixing occurred. This is the reason why archaeological remains of the two cultures have been found. In the museum of Ingapirca Archaeological Complex can be seen more than 150 pieces found in the area, such as: textiles, ceramics, jewelry, among others.

Ingapirca and Qhapaq Ñan (Inca Road System)

Ingapirca Archaeological Complex is a place that has to be visited for all those who want to know part of Qhapaq Ñan – Inca Road System. It was a transportation system of more than 30,000 kilometers which was built over several centuries by the Incas.

Best Trip Ecuador invites you to visit this unique Archaeological Complex of Ecuador through our Ingapirca Full Day Tour, which departs from the city of Cuenca every Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday. We will take you to know not only the fantastic Ingapirca Ruins, but also the Cañari Indigenous Market (Sundays), and Biblián Church on Zhalao Hill. This tour includes tourist transportation, lunch, and accompaniment of a Bilingual Guide (Spanish – English). Enjoy the historical, archaeological, and cultural riches of the province of Cañar, you will be amazed!

Recommendations to go to Quilotoa

Posted By : Best Trip Ecuador/ 87

Knowing Quilotoa Lagoon is one of the most recommended experiences when visiting Ecuador. In this blog post, we want to give you some recommendations to go to this stunning crater lake in the Cotopaxi province.

Cover Photo by: jacorream

1. Start your trip early in the morning

We recommend you to start your trip very early in the morning, even more if you must go from Quito to the province of Cotopaxi. If you want to know how to get to Quilotoa, please visit our blog: https://www.besttripecuador.com/como-llegar-al-quilotoa/blog

It is important to take advantage of daylight to admire the lagoon either from the viewpoints of Shalalá or Quilotoa. Also, if you are going to descend to the lagoon it is better to do it early so that you can climb without any rush.

It is also important to notice that in Ecuador the sun’s rays reach perpendicular to the earth’s surface, which is why sunstroke and sunburn must be prevented by avoiding the midday sun, making use of hats or sunscreen.

2. Do not forget to hydrate yourself constantly

If you are going to descend to the lagoon and go back you should constantly hydrate. The time this activity can take depends on your physical conditions. Do not worry if you can only descend to the lagoon, which consists of approximately two kilometers of trail, because the community of Quilotoa offers the service of mule trekking that will help you to reach the edge of the crater again.

Photo by: jacorream

In any case, it is necessary you to take your own water with you, and if you forget to do so, there are several small stores at the entrance of Quilotoa Lagoon where you can buy drinks. We also recommend you to wear appropriate clothing and shoes. Do not forget that in Quilotoa there are times which are very windy, so we suggest you take a windbreaker with you.

3. Carry cash with you

It is important to carry cash for lunch, to buy local handicrafts or to pay the mule trekking, among others. You must know that credit or debit cards are not usually frequent payment methods in the area.

4. Take your camera with you

Do not miss the opportunity to photograph the fantastic Quilotoa Lagoon and its incredible turquoise waters. For this matter, it is essential you to take your camera or cell phone with you. The photographs that you will obtain from this trip will become epic memories.

Best Trip Ecuador offers its Quilotoa Tour. It is a simple, fun, and organized way to get to know this unforgettable destination of Ecuador. Come with us and meet the famous viewpoint of “Shalalá”. which is recognized for its transparent structure, and where you can admire the beautiful Quilotoa Lagoon. From that point, we will go to the viewpoint of Quilotoa, managed by the local community, where you can descend to the Lagoon. Afterwards, you will have free time to have lunch, and next we will visit a handicraft store in the community of Tigua, as well as the viewpoint of the Toachi River Canyon.

Book your tour now, you will love it!

Things to do in Papallacta

Posted By : Best Trip Ecuador/ 202

Although Papallacta is especially famous for its spring waters, there are other activities that will complement your trip to this relaxing destination that is located a few hours from Quito. Next, we tell you about some of them.

1. Papallacta Lagoon

We recommend you to visit Papallacta Lagoon Lookout, which is located at 3,180 metres above sea level in the buffer zone of Cayambe-Coca Ecological Reserve. This Lagoon is characterized by the dark and deep tone of its waters, and it is surrounded by fantastic Andean vegetation which deserve to be seen.

Papallacta Lagoon was formed by a damming of Papallacta River, caused by the eruption of Antisana Volcano in the 18th century. According to local legends, the lake is protected by the ‘Enchanted Father’ who prevents people go through it at night. His figure is represented by a stone which rests on the Lagoon banks. Do not forget to know this magic Lagoon, we are sure that you will love it.

2. Walking trails

The Andean nature that surrounds Papallacta is extraordinary special. There is a trail called “La Isla” (the Island), which follows the path of the Cosanga River. Through this path it is possible to hear the song of the different species of birds that live in the area of the moor. After traveling around 300 meters and crossing a bridge, you will arrive at a beach where there is a mosaic of stones of different shapes and colors. On this place, it is possible to immerse yourself in the cold crystalline waters or take a break on the shore to enjoy nature.

3. Termas de Papallacta

“Termas de Papallacta” is an ideal place to escape from everyday life, and the tense life in the city. This place, very visited by national and foreign tourists, combines the beauty of the natural environment with great service. “Termas de Papallacta” has a SPA & Resort, 9 thermal pools with different temperatures and sizes, and 3 cold water springs, among other services. We are sure that after taking a bath in one of these pools you will be as good as new!

4. The traditional cuisine of Papallacta

The typical dish of Papallacta parish is trout, a cold-water fish that is usually found in the waters of rivers and lakes. If you visit Papallacta, you can not leave without having enjoyed this delicious dish. However, there are also many other typical dishes such as chicken broth, lime beans, corn, among others. Local restaurants and hostels offer the traditional cuisine of the Ecuadorian mountainous area.

Photo by: RitaE

All these activities are part of our Papallacta Tour of Best Trip Ecuador. This tour offers you a full day of relaxation. It begins with a visit to Papallacta Lagoon Lookout. Afterwards, you will arrive at Termas de Papallacta Tourist Complex where you will hike along La Isla Trail to learn a little more about the local flora and fauna. Then you can enjoy the magical thermal waters of the SPA & Resort. You will have time to have lunch on your own, and then you can continue your day of relaxation until the return to Quito.