Trek and camp Ecuador’s very own Inca Trail, crossing remote communities and farmlands and wild natural landscapes home to the Andean Condor, before arriving at the country’s most extensive ancient ruins, Ingapirca.
DAY 1: QUITO CITY TOUR & TRANSFER TO RIOBAMBA
DAY 2: TRANSFER TO ACHUPALLAS AND HIKE TO TRES CRUCES
DAY 3: HIKE FROM TRES CRUCES TO PAREDONES
DAY 4: HIKE FROM PAREDONES TO INGAPIRCA
DAY 5: CUENCA CITY TOUR, TRANSFER TO QUITO
Day 1: QUITO CITY TOUR & TRANSFER TO RIOBAMBA
The drive to Riobamba won’t take too long, so before we set out, we begin our day with a scenic tour of Quito’s beautiful colonial city center. To continue we head south along the Avenue of the Volcanoes, passing Cotopaxi (5,897 m), the Illinizas (5,263 m), and the tallest peak in Ecuador, Chimborazo (6,310 m). We make our way to the traditional village of Achupallas, at 3,100 m., where the Inca Trail begins. We hike for a few hours before settling into our campsite, where we enjoy a freshly prepared backcountry meal and an evening under the stars. (L, D)
Day 2: TRANSFER TO ACHUPALLAS AND HIKE TO TRES CRUCES
We continue the trail following the Cadrul River through hilly country on the way to Laguna de las Tres Cruces, passing Cerro Callana Pucara to the west, and the pyramidal Cerro Mapaihuana (4,365 m) to the east. To reach the lagoon, we make our way through a natural rock arch and cross the river before climbing to 4,000 m.
We will be surrounded by marvelous Andean landscapes and high-altitude paramo vegetation throughout the day, hopefully in the company of soaring Andean condors. Horses will be employed throughout, to help carry the equipment and backpacks. We make camp tonight near Tres Cruces Lake. (B, L, D)
Day 3: HIKE FROM TRES CRUCES TO PAREDONES
We awake to a panorama which has changed little in five centuries. After breakfast, we continue south with fantastic views of Laguna Sanshavin and Cerro Quilloloma. We follow the road to Laguna Culebrillas (sacred to the indigenous Cañari people) along the vestiges of the famous Inca trail, built around 500 years ago. We first head towards Tambo Paredones, a large stone construction built by the Inca Tupac-Yupanqui, and after 6-8 hours trekking, reach Abrasca-Rumi (the indestructible), where we pitch camp and have our dinner under the stars. The campsite is near the quarry from which the Incas mined Diorite, the igneous stone used in the construction
of Ingapirca. (B, L, D)
Day 4: HIKE FROM PAREDONES TO INGAPIRCA
This morning, we hike to Ingapirca Ruins along a portion of the Inca road which is seven meters wide in places. Hiking in and seeing this incredible ancient city for the first time is breathtaking. After lunch, we spend an incredible afternoon exploring the ruins, touring the on-site museum, and learning about pre-Inca and Inca culture from expert guides. We then continue by vehicle to Cuenca, where we spend the night. (B, L, D)
Day 5: CUENCA CITY TOUR, TRANSFER TO QUITO
This morning, we tour the city of Cuenca. Designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its incredible colonial architecture, we amble down Cuenca’s cobblestone streets exploring plazas, courtyards, and churches. We visit Plaza of San Francisco where traditional embroidered “chola” skirts are sold and continue to a beautiful the flower market in a small plaza under the carved stone entrance of the church of El Carmen de la Asunción. This tour ends with a drive along the Tomebamba River to admire the city’s classic overhanging houses and balconies. We fly back to Quito in the afternoon. (B, L)
Services included in the prices:
- Private transportation
- High-end sleeping tents
- Kitchen tent
- Bathroom tent
- Camping equipment
- Freshly prepared meals
- Bilingual guides
- All meals as described (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
- Personal mountain gear (warm cloths, sleeping bags, sun glasses, head lamp, etc.)
- International flight tickets
- Meals and drinks in hotels (lunch, dinner)
- Insurance of any kind
- Travel accident and health insurance
- Luggage insurance and trip cancellation
- Other non-specified expenses
5 and 2 hours first and last days
5 to 8 hours per day
2600 m to 3500 m
Layers of clothing for both warm and cold weather, sun block, cap, gloves, flashlight, boots, rain, and overnight gear
Prices & Dates
Dates & Prices: To be determined / Contact us! ✓
Country / Location:
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EZZ - Single room supplement
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