Ecuador is a fantastic tourist destination with tours to the Galapagos Islands, the Amazon Rainforest and Treks to the Andean Mountain Range as main highlights.
It is also relatively easy and safe to travel around Ecuador, but its public transportation system and tourist information centers are not very well organized yet. It is important to be well informed and/or speak a few words of Spanish before you travel to Ecuador. We can help you with actual travel information and depending on available travel time and budget, we can organize virtually each type of customized tour within Ecuador, including hiking in Vilcabamba.
To give you a better impression about the optional travel destinations, tours and treks within Ecuador, we have already made a small selection of Ecuador tour options, which can al be adjusted to your travel preferences.
Are you close to a burn-out, exhausted from having stress at work, or do you want to prevent to get that far, then it is time take action. Challenge yourself to fit a well-deserved rest into your busy live schedule! Step away from your full daily agenda join this relaxation tour to Ecuador’s finest natural surroundings, the fertile Valley of Longevity, Vilcabamba! This special tour to Ecuador is designed to relax and heal both your body and mind and provide you with new energy.
Are you stressed and close to a burnout, or do you want to prevent it getting this far? Time to relax. Clear your schedule and book our relaxation tour in Ecuador! Enjoy 9 days of not having to worry about anything or anyone!
This tour in Ecuador is for those who are about to get married, or planning a second honeymoon and have not yet decided on where to go. If you are looking for something completely different (or maybe you are just tired of hearing the same old story of friends going to all inclusive resorts at the beach), why not break this routine, take the leap, tie the knot, and book an original, romantic yet adventurous Honeymoon trip to Ecuador.
Although traveling in Ecuador is less known than traveling through its southern brother Peru, we can guarantee that you will never forget a visit to this beautiful country! Everyone who has travelled in Ecuador will agree, but if you ask us what it is that makes Ecuador so special we find it difficult to describe. There are simply no words to describe the beautiful nature, great views of snow capped mountains, colonial cities and colorful Andean cultures!
Romantic tours in Ecuador: About to get married, or planning a second honeymoon and not yet decided on where to travel to? If you are looking for an original tour, something completely different than a standard honeymoon, why not break this routine, take the leap, tie the knot and book an original, romantic yet adventurous Honeymoon tour to Ecuador!
Bring peace back to body and mind and join us on this amazing journey through Ecuador. Travel over the sacred Andean mountains, passing the Equator, along the Pacific Coast and into the Valley of Longevity!
Travel through Ecuador and find out for yourself why their national slogan is "Ama la Vida!". Freely this will translate in: "Ecuador, love and enjoy life". Joining this complete tour, filled with natural and cultural highlights, will make you understand why.
During this original Yoga Retreat-Tour you will not just stay at one place, but you will also travel around through the spectacular landscapes of Ecuador! Join us on this special journey and enjoy Yoga classes on amazing locations in the Amazon Rainforest, at the Pacific Coast and in the Sacred Valley of Vilcabamba!
During this ecological tour in Ecuador you travel in only two weeks, to two of the most famous natural highlights of Ecuador and maybe even the whole of South America, the Galapagos Islands and the Amazon Rainforest!
Tours to Ecuador offer travelers a wide variety of sights, with relatively short travel distances. Despite the fact that Ecuador is seven times the size of the Netherlands, it is a small country by South American standards. Still, it is a country rich in cultural and natural attractions. A tour through Ecuador is actually a world trip in a nutshell.
Galapagos Islands tours
Ecuador’s most famous tourist attraction is the Galapagos Islands. This group of islands is located on the Equator, about 1000 kilometers off the coast of Ecuador. Due to this isolated location, the flora and fauna on the Galapagos Islands have been able to develop for thousands of years, virtually without external influences. The flora and fauna of the Galapagos were therefore ideal for Charles Darwin’s research. He based his Evolution Theory mainly on the small differences between the finches that lived on the different islands. These finches are now called the Darwin Finches and are one of the many unique animal species that occur on and around the Galapagos Islands. Other animal species that appeal to the imagination include: the blue-footed Gannets (better known as ‘The Blue Footed Boobies), the impressive giant tortoises, the Marine iguanas, the penguins and the many, many sea lions. For the average visitor, however, it is not so much the many different animal species that make a visit to the Galapagos Islands so special, but the fact that these animals do not seem to be afraid of us. This provides a more intimate experience and many beautiful photos. Tours to Ecuador are not complete without a visit to the Galapagos Islands. But this certainly does not mean that a tour through Ecuador is not also worthwhile without a visit to the Galapagos Islands.
Mountain landscapes in Ecuador
Personally, I am particularly impressed by Ecuador’s beautiful mountain landscapes to travel and walk through. The route from Quito to Riobamba is sometimes called the Avenue of Volcanoes, because you drive past more than seven volcanoes, two of which are active. There are no fewer than 1,289 mountains and volcanoes throughout Ecuador that are high and/or distinctive enough to have their own name. Each mountain and hilltop offers a view over a different valley with its own microclimate and impressive natural beauty. This ensures that your ‘travel days’ during your tour through Ecuador will not be boring. The mountains and volcanoes in Ecuador also offer great options for the adventurous traveler who enjoys long walks and/or mountain climbing.
Cotopaxi and Chimborazo volcanoes
The Cotopaxi volcano (5897 m) and the Chimborazo volcano (6263 m) are among the highest and most famous volcanoes in Ecuador. The impressive cone of the Cotopaxi volcano is the highest active volcano in the world and appeals to the imagination of mountain climbers from all over the world. A little less known is that the top of the Chimborazo volcano is actually the highest point on Earth! At least if we were to measure from the center of the Earth. Even when you walk to the Whymper shelter at 5000 meters above sea level, you are actually a little closer to the stars than when you are on the top of Mount Everest. Doesn’t it sound great if, after your tour through Ecuador, you can say at home that you climbed higher than the top of the Mount Everest.
Ecuador not only has active volcanoes, but also volcanoes that have long since become extinct and whose craters are now full of water. The minerals left behind in these craters often give these crater lakes special colors. The crater lake of Quilotoa is a good example of this. When the sun and wind are favorable, the surface of this lake turns emerald green. This is a magnificent sight and it is therefore not surprising that Laguna (lake) Quilotoa is high in the top ten of most beautiful crater lakes in the world! A visit to Laguna Quilotoa should not be missing from your travel itinerary to Ecuador.
The Amazon Rainforest in Ecuador
The huge Amazon Rainforest is spread across several countries in South America. Despite the fact that only 2% of the Amazon Rainforest is located in Ecuador, this area covers no less than 48% of the territory of Ecuador and is still three times the size of the Netherlands! For tourism, the Amazon Rainforest in Ecuador has a major advantage over other countries, as the rainforest in Ecuador is relatively easy to reach. The starting point of the Amazon tours is approximately an 8-hour bus ride from Quito, or a flight of less than an hour. It is important to mention that the standard group trips and tours to Ecuador, offered by large travel agencies, do not actually travel into the Amazon Rainforest. They often stay on the edges in the Tena area. The nature here can also be beautiful, but due to the constant activity of the people living in this area, you will encounter little wildlife during these tours. It is better to travel to the Cuyabeno Amazon Reserve or the Yasuni Amazon Reserve where you can spot monkeys, anacondas, caimans, parrots, and many other wild animals.
Inca history in Ecuador
In addition to natural highlights, tours to Ecuador also offer a special cultural experience. For example, in Cañar you can admire the southernmost Inca ruins. This archaeological site is called Ingapirca and is built on the foundations of temples of the indigenous Cañar people. The round Inca temple of Ingapirca closely resembles the sun temples at Machu Picchu and Cusco, which is why it is commonly thought that this was an important place for the Incas. It is difficult to say whether this was also the case for the city of Tomobamba. Just before the Spaniards arrived at this city on their tour through Ecuador, the Incas razed the city to the ground. The Inca people wanted with all their might to prevent the Spanish conquerors from living in their beautiful city. Some foundations and terraces of the Incas can still be admired in an open-air museum in the colonial center of modern Cuenca.
Colonial cities in Ecuador
Quito, the capital of Ecuador and Krakow (Poland) were the first cities on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1978. In the center of Quito you can find several beautiful colonial churches, cathedrals and other colonial buildings. My personal favorite is La Basilica, with an almost Gothic appearance. Yet I think that Cuenca is the most beautiful city in Ecuador. Perhaps this is because the city feels much more relaxed. It is the third largest city in Ecuador after Guayaquil and Quito, but when you walk through the center the city does not feel large. If you want to take beautiful pictures of the colonial buildings in Cuenca, I recommend doing so on a Sunday, when there is little traffic in the narrow streets. Tours to Ecuador are also not complete without a visit to the impressive cathedral in Cuenca. The domes on the roof in particular are a real example of craftsmanship. Other sights in Cuenca include visiting the Panama Hat museum (indeed, these hats are originally from Ecuador and not from Panama), a stroll along the Tomobamba River. And, for enthusiasts, a treasure hunt along the many small museums, art galleries, theaters and impressive murals. Cuenca is certainly the most cultural city in Ecuador.
Unfortunately, many indigenous peoples in the Americas continue to face discrimination. They regularly struggle with a lack of sense of identity and there are many alcohol problems among native men, especially when they have no or little meaningful work. The Otavaleños have found a solution to this. They have invested in commercializing and advertising their age-old traditions. For example, they have combined their age-old weaving techniques and designs with modern designs, production methods and sales techniques. There are even Otavaleños who travel the world and sell their products in New York, Tokyo, Milan and Barcelona! And if you saw musicians playing traditional South American music in Amsterdam, they probably came from Otavalo. The money they earn from their trips to and performances in other countries is often invested in their own company in Ecuador. In short, the Otavaleños are an independent and proud indigenous population.
Ecuador and La Casa del Arbol swing
Another thing that few people know is that the current tourist trend of placing swings in iconic locations started in Ecuador. To be precise, on a barren hill between Baños and the Tungurahua volcano. Here, former soldier and volunteer firefighter Carlos Sanchez Carrasco built a simple tree house in 2006 to better observe the activities of the Tungurahua volcano. Later he added a simple swing so that his grandchildren would visit him more often. Photos on Facebook attracted the attention of young travelers in particular. However, this all changed when a photo of a tourist on a swing with a smoking Tungurahua volcano in the background, won an award from National Geographic as the best photo in the category ‘Travel’ in early February 2014. The swing with view became enormously popular and for many a tour through Ecuador is no longer complete without visiting Casa del Arbol.
For more information about tours to Ecuador, I recommend viewing the above trips and/or sending us a message without obligation: firstname.lastname@example.org For our Ecuador tours we work together with the experienced and reliable Julio Verne Travel.
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