(8 nights / 9 days - Departures on: Monday)
In this 8 nights / 9 days program you will enjoy the main attractions in the three major cities of Ecuador, which are: Quito, Cuenca and Guayaquil, as well as an interesting sightseeing tour of the Avenue of the Volcanoes.
ITINERARY STARTING ON MONDAY:
(8 nights / 9 days)
Departure from Quito through The Panamericana North Highway. Brief stop at Calderon, a town where the famous “masapan” dolls are made, we will continue passing through Guayllabamba town with its typical fruit cherimoyer, we will stop at the highway point that conduces to Cayambe where we will get the chance to admire and take pictures of the beautiful landscape and snow caped mountains of the zone, crossing the equatorial line at Cayambe we will pass by Guachala (used to be the Middle of the world monument), before we head up to Otavalo we will make a stop at Mira Lago to take pictures of the beautiful San Pablo Lake. The tour then continues to Otavalo here the Otavaleños (natives) set up a market in which a bartering manner of shopping is taken. The market hosts a variety of different handcrafted items. Continuing the trip, we will go to visit the leather shops in Cotacachi before returning to Quito through the Cajas-Tabacundo road.
We start with a panoramic route among the banking and financial areas, shopping malls and La Mariscal neighbourhood, where most of hotels are located. We continue towards the Historical Centre of the City where the following attractions will be visited: “El Panecillo” (entrance included), beautiful place from where a sight of colonial and modern Quito will be taken; San Francisco and La Basilica churches; Plaza de la Independencia (Independence square), walking through the colonial streets we´ll find the Cathedral, the Government’s Palace and La Compañía Church, where adornments and gold altars can be appreciated. (Church entrances are not included).
We will continue to the northern part of the city heading up to the “Middle of the World City” (entrance is included) where the monument that divides the Northern from the Southern Hemisphere will be observed. It was built during the XVII century when a French Expedition defined the precise location of the equatorial line. At the end, optional visit either to Intiñan or Ethnographic Museum (entrance is not included).
** Train Operation is subject to change
visiting the Calderon Park, the New and the Old Cathedral, the Flower Market, Modern Arts Museum. We continue the tour to the Homero Ortega Panama Hat factory to observe the complete process of manufacturing. We will also observe the “broken bridge” and finally visit the tourist balcony of “Turi” where we can see a panoramic view of the whole city of Cuenca. Free afternoon
(Starting on Mondays)
(8 nights / 9 days)
Single Room for 1 person
Double room for 2 persons
Triple room for 3 persons
|R. Isabel / Carvallo / City Plaza||Tourist||1549||1234||1211||666|
|Holiday Inn or Nu House / Carvallo / Palace||Superior||1679||1265||1226||666|
|Mercure / Sta. Lucia / Hampton||First||1787||1331||1304||682|
|Dann / Sta. Lucia / Hampton||First Superior||1832||1373||1349||682|
|Marriott / Mansion / Hilton||Luxury||2312||1747||N/A||746|
Prices are per person, in US. Dollars
Prices are valid until December 15 /2013
• Transfer airport / hotel
• 3 nights accommodation in Quito
• City tour, Equatorial Monument
• Excursion to Otavalo Market
• Excursion to Riobamba by the “Avenue of the Volcanoes” with a brief visit to the Cotopaxi National Park & Hacienda. Lunch is included
• 1 night lodging at Riobamba (First class****) with dinner and breakfast
• Excursion by train up to Alausi, passing through the “Devil’s Nose” box lunch included we will continue to Cuenca by road visiting the Ingapirca Ruins.
• 2 nights lodging in Cuenca
• City tour in Cuenca
• Transfer Cuenca/Guayaquil
• 2 nights lodging in Guayaquil
• City tour in Guayaquil
• Transfer hotel / airport in Guayaquil
• Hotel taxes
** Train Operation is subject to change without notice
Not Included :
• Tickets to churches and museums during the Quito city tour = value approx. $ 7 (optional)
• Cotopaxi National Park entrance fee = U.S. $ 10
• Entrance to the Ruins of Ingapirca = U.S. $ 6
• Municipal rate of Hotels in Quito = U.S. $ 2
THE CITY OF QUITO AND MIDDLE THE WORLD
The first stop after picking up at selected hotels, is the the “Panecillo”, a wonderful viewpoint which allows to see a sight of colonial and modern Quito.
At the colonial district, the “PLaza de la Independencia”, visit and walking to the Cathedral church, Government and Archbishop Palace, the Church of the Company where you can appreciate its adornments and gold altars.
The San Francisco Church which has been built in the seventeenth century
The Middle of the World where you will visit the monument that divides the northern & southern hemispheres, built in the XVII century when a French Expedition defined the precise location of the line that divides the world
THE OTAVALO MARKET
On the way to the market, you will stop at Calderon, a town where the famous masapan dolls are made, Cayambe to admire and take pictures of the beautiful landscape and snow capped mountains of the zone, crossing the equatorial line at Cayambe . “Mira Lago” to take pictures of the beautiful San Pablo Lake.
Otavalo, here the Otavaleños (natives) set up a market in which a bartering manner of shopping is taken place. The market hosts a variety of different handcrafted items.
Leather stores at Cotacachi will also be visited.
THE TRAIN OF THE ANDES AND DEVIL´S NOSE
The construction of the railroad of Ecuador is like a symbol of a national unit that has helped the progression of the country. Several plans and attempts were made to build the railway from Guayaquil to Quito, since 1860 until 1874, when the first locomotive reached Milagro.
But it was only by 1895, when Eloy Alfaro the president at the time contacted North American technicians Archer Harman and Edward Morely, representatives of an American company interested in the building of the most difficult railway in the world as it was called at that time. The tracks finally reached a huge obstacle - an almost perpendicular wall of rock - called the Devil´s Nose.
Many lives were shed in the construction of what to this day is referred as a masterpiece of railway engineering: a zig-zag carved out of the rock, which allows the train, by advancing and backing up, to reach the necessary height to the town of Alausí. The train finally reached Alausí by September 1902 and Riobamba by July 1905 and finally on June 25, 1908 the train made its triumphal entrance to Quito and was received by; arches of palms, laurel and flowers, bells tolling banquettes, dances and popular festivities that lasted four days.
Today’s train is a public national railroad company which at the moment, serves as one of the main tourist attractions in Ecuador and the province of Chimborazo holds what is called The most difficult train in the world. This train departs from Alausi and crosses the Devil´s Nose, which sports an impressive descent down a steep cliff.
THE INGAPIRCA RUINS
Ingapirca is the largest and best preserved archaeological site in Ecuador, is located 80 km north of Cuenca. Its construction combines Adobe coppery brown used by the Cañaris culture with bluish green stones brought later by the Incas. It was built with millions of hewn stone in the middle of the eighteenth century. We will visit the archeological site to observe each one of the buildings. There is also a museum located next to the ruins.
CAJAS NATIONAL PARK
Cajas is a national park located on the northwester side of the city of Cuenca; it’s formed by wetland from glacial origins with more than 200 lakes. Our visit will located on the lower part of the park called the area “Llaviuco” only 30 minutes away from the city of Cuenca. We will hike at an easy rate for one hour at an altitude of 3,000 meters above sea level (9,842ft). We will continue our visit until we get to a point called “tres cruces” which forms the Continental Divide between the Pacific and the Atlantic ocean at an altitude of 4,135m (13,566ft), we will have a short walk to observe this interesting area, then we will descend
Note: We recommend taking warm clothes, a bottle of water and some snacks.
THE CITY OF CUENCA
Following attractions are available to visit: Plaza San Sebastian, modern arts museum where many contemporary artworks are displayed, San Francisco market, the flower market, the culture house, Abdon Calderon Park, the New Cathedral, The Homero Ortega Panama Hat factory where we learn about the process of manufacturing.
THE CITY OF GUAYAQUIL
Guayaquil’s City tour starts at The Simón Bolívar park, El Malecón 2000, piers and the memorial statue of Bolivar and San Martin. Visit the Colonial district of Las Peñas where you can admire the wooden architecture and its art galleries houses, appreciate the Guayaquil panoramic view and the Guayas River from the Santa Ana Hill.
ITINERARY STARTING ON MONDAY
Quito - Otavalo - Quito - Cotopaxi - Riobamba - Alausi - Sibambe - Ruinas de Ingapirca - Cuenca - Guayaquil
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