Activities in and around Quito

Evening performance of Jacchigua Folkloric Ballet

Ninety dancers, musicians, technicians and social researchers bring a wonderful evocation of the cultural history of the Andean region for 2 hours – in a whirlwind of costumes. This performance, which has been performed for many years by the Jacchigua company in Quito and in many places around the world, is considered a living museum of the original inhabitants of Ecuador. The performance takes place every Wednesday and Friday evening in the Casa de la Cultura. We buy your tickets in advance.

Visit to Hacienda Guachala (Cangahua)

Halfway between Quito and Otavalo is Ecuador’s oldest hacienda, built on an old Inca temple. Now it is a hotel from which you can take walks and horseback rides in the Indian region of Cangahua.

Biketour Chaquiñan – cycling through the valley

During this bike tour you will cross the valley of Puembo, Tumbaco and Cumbaya. The cycle path is built on the old railway line that connected Quito with Otavalo. You cycle through old railway tunnels and have a beautiful view over the valley. During the week, but especially at the weekend, you will meet many local sports enthusiasts here. During the weekend you can drink freshly squeezed fruit juices and buy fruit salad at various points. In total you cycle about 20 km.
Duration: 2 to 3 hours.
Bring along: Raincoat, sun milk, mosquito repellent, sunglasses, refillable water bottle and cycling gloves.

Length of time:2 to 3 hours

Including:English speaking local guide, transport for the bicycles, mountain bikes, helmet and water

Day trekking – Rucu Pichincha volcano (4696 m)

This trek starts at the Teleferico, a cable car on the outskirts of Quito that takes you from 3135m to 4050m to Cruz Loma, where you have a beautiful view of the city and the surrounding volcanoes. From here a hiking trail leaves to the top of the Rucu Pichincha (4696 meters), which passes through grasslands and volcanic landscape. The last meters are rocky and you climb your way to the top where (if cloudless) you have a beautiful view of the area.
Bring with you: warm sports clothing, raincoat, sun milk, sunglasses, mosquito repellent and a refillable bottle.

Including:transport, English speaking guide, Teleferico ticket, water and lunch box

Day trip cloud forest of Maquipucuna

2.5 hours drive from Quito you will find this beautiful lodge, in the middle of 20,000 hectares of protected forest, ranging from 1200 to 2800 meters altitude. There is a small research center at the lodge. You can make it a day trip, but it is best to stay overnight and go out with a local guide.
More info: see www.maqui.org

Day trip to Otavalo incl. Indigenous market

On this full-day excursion, visit Otavalo and Ecuador’s most famous Indian market at the Plaza de Poncho with its overwhelming array of artisans. On this day trip you will then travel on to Cotacachi, known for its leather goods. Lake San Pablo is also on the agenda.

Length of time:entire day

Including:car with driver who accompanies you all day

Excluding:meals on the go

Day trip cloud forest from Mindo

Two hours’ drive west of the capital, this small mountain town is located at an altitude of 1,250 meters, surrounded by beautiful cloud forest. Mindo is the ideal place for hiking in the nearly 20,000 hectare cloud forest reserve Bosque Protector Mindo-Nambillo. In addition to countless hummingbirds, hokkos, tangaras and other bird species, the rare red cock-of-the-rock (cock-of-the-rock) lives here. You can undertake all kinds of activities here: hiking, horseback riding, bathing in waterfalls, rafting and kayaking, birdwatching, etc.

Length of time:Entire day

Including:English speaking guide and transport in private car

Excluding:meal on the go

Day trip thermal baths of Papallacta

We leave Quito and drive steeply up the western flanks of the Andes Mountains. On the way we stop to admire the unique paramo landscapes. Then we descend on the east side of the Andes mountains to the village of Papallacta. Here are beautiful volcanic thermal baths on the edge of the Cayambe-Coca National Park, where we choose to relax in the warm water baths or explore the National Park.

Length of time:Entire day

Including:private transport, local English speaking guide

Excluding:thermal baths entrance (USD 9.50) and lunch

The pilgrimage to El Quinche

Not far from Quito airport lies the pretty village of El Quinche with its beautiful pilgrimage site. Every year in November, tens of thousands of pilgrims travel on foot from Quito to El Quinche to implore the Virgin Mary some favor. On the other side of the main road you will also find a beautiful Indian cemetery where it is sympathetically busy, especially with All Saints ‘and All Souls’ Day.

Colonial Quito

For this excursion, the guide will pick you up by car from the hotel. We visit the old and the new Quito: the parliament, the presidential palace, the Plaza de Independencia and the churches of San Francisco, La Compania and the cathedral. Then we go to El Panecillo, the statue of the angel and panoramic point that sits high above Quito. The guide provides information about Quito and Ecuador. The entrance to the listed attractions is subject to opening hours.

Length of time:4 to 5 hours

Including:English speaking guide and private transport

Excluding:possible meal, entrance to museums and churches

Colonial Quito and the Equatorial Museum

First you will visit the historic colonial center of Quito with the English speaking guide, its churches and squares, the modern city and the Panecillo hill panorama point. Then we drive to the monument at the equator Mitad del Mundo and the Intiñan museum, where various tests show that we are indeed on the equatorial line. Also fun for children!

Length of time:5 to 6 hours

Including:English speaking guide and transport in private car

Excluding:entrance to museums and meal on the go

By train to Cotopaxi

A tourist train takes you – via the beautiful village of Machachi – from the train station of Quito to the station El Boliche in the National Park of Cotopaxi.
Please note: this excursion has been discontinued since June 2020. Maybe this train ride will continue again in the future.

Paragliding in Quito

In a tandem flight with experienced instructors you soar over Quito. Three hours of pure adrenaline.

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