This reserve is a suitable area for hiking.
The reserve includes the twin mountain Ilinizas: Iliniza Sur is Ecuador’s sixth mountain with 5 248 meters. Iliniza Norte comes in eighth place with 5,126 meters. The ascent of the Illiniza Norte is doable for amateurs (the top is snow-free), but not without danger. The Iliniza Sur has steep ice walls and is only for experienced climbers. The Ilinizas are located in the northern part of the park. This is accessible from El Chaupi, a village south of Machachi. The entrance to the park is USD 5. There is a mountain hut that can accommodate 18 people with access from El Chaupi.
The famous laguna Quilotoa is also part of the reserve. This beautiful Andean lake is located in the southern part of the park. There are many hiking opportunities around Quilotoa Lake.
The lake is accessible from Latacunga. The most used road is via Zumbahua (turn right on the road from Latacunga to Quevedo). There are many options for overnight stays in the area and the views of the Indian villages and the lake are phenomenal.
For more information about climbing the Illinizas see our chapter “mountain climbing”