10 days in Ecuador- How should I spend them?

Jul 15th, 2005, 10:28 AM
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10 days in Ecuador- How should I spend them?

I am planning a trip to Ecuador for September and hope to be there for 10 days. I would like to see Quito, Cuenca, Banos and a beach town. Any suggestions on how to split up the days? Any suggestions for a good beach town? Thanks!
travelchica is offline  
Jul 20th, 2005, 08:28 AM
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Your trip to Ecuador would not be complete without visiting the Galapagos.
ace1824 is offline  
Jul 22nd, 2006, 09:35 AM
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You'll find discussion about visiting those places in Ecuador on the Thorn Tree (travel forum of Lonely Planet). It appears on this forum, the primary focus is around the Galapagos.

Recently, there's been increased activity from the Tungurahua Volcano which is close to town of Banos. Banos actually sits to the northeast of the volcano, and winds carry ash fall to the west or southwest of the volcano. The Southwest Volcano Research Center posts updates and you can read latest on volcanic activity . . . http://www.swvrc.org/cerupt.htm

Another site to read about latest in Banos is http://banosecuador.blogspot.com/

JBX is offline  
Jul 31st, 2006, 05:11 AM
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Just returned from 2 1/2 weeks in Ecuador (language school at the Academia Latinoamerica de Espanol)

The Galapagos is by far the number one attraction in Ecuador, however, if the expense or time commitment is too much for your trip, here are some other points of interest.

Bellavista Cloudforest - I spent five days up at the Bellavista lodge in the cloud forest near Mindo. About 2 hours from Quito


Went birdwatching, hiking and horseback riding (as well as taking spanish lessons). Food was excellent, accomodations fine (paper thin walls, but it quiets right down around 9:30pm)
They do three guided walks a day. Can be arranged as a day trip but I would recommend an overnight.

Otavalo is a wonderful market town about 1 1/2 hours from Quito. The Saturday market is great fun with incredible bargains to be found.


We hired a private guide to drive three of us to Otavalo, Cotacachi and Cochasqui for $69 a piece. (I have his card)

Cotacachi is another wonderful town that has an incredible number of leather shops. I got a marvelous leather duffle bag for $32.

Cochasqui is a site with 15 pre-Incan adobe pyramids. Most are still covered with dirt and grass, however two are excavated. The guided tour was very interesting and the site has a great 240 degree view.

We also did a day trip to Volcano Land,
doing zip lines, lunch at a hacienda and horsebackriding. Volcano land is a large area in between 5 volcanos. the big attraction is Cotapaxi, the tallest active volcano in the world (however it hasn't erupted in some 200 years and is far away from the currently erupting volcano in Banos)

The countryside in this area is gorgeous. Besides horseback riding and zip lines, you can go mountain biking, hiking to waterfalls, hiking up to the refuge at Cotapaxi (did I mention it is snow covered but the refuge is below the snow line, usually). You can stay overnight at the haciendas or do a day trip. We paid $84 each for transportation, guide, zip line, lunch and horseback ride.


It's chilly up there so they put you in chaps and wool poncho for the horseback ride.

Banos is also a very nice town, 2 1/2 hours from Quito. However you will need to check the status of the volcano Tungurahua. It just had a major eruption on the side facing away from Banos. I heard that the hot springs are closed as well may be other attractions in that area.

Have a great trip!

eveningcrane is offline  
Jul 31st, 2006, 09:10 AM
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Appreciate reading your post on places in Ecuador, as I, too will be headed south in the next couple of weeks. Tentatively, hope to go with my original plan of several days in Banos . . . however should the volcano get much more active (I've been watching), then a plan B might be to head to Bellavista.

Really would like to get the name & contact information of that private guide whom took you to Otavalo, Cotacachi and Cochasqui. If you could post that, or email me directly, I'd appreciate it. Thanks.
[email protected]

Tess_Durberville is offline  
Aug 1st, 2006, 04:27 AM
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The guide I used was Diego Chiriboga Najera and his website is


The 02 telephone number has changed from the one on the website. It is now 02-2249699

Have a great trip. Ecuador is a beautiful country.
eveningcrane is offline  
Aug 4th, 2006, 08:23 AM
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In the 10 days you are in Ecuador, I would suggest you try to spend 1-2 days in Papallacta at the Thermal Springs spa..It is about 2 hours from Quito and worth it ..
BARRY is offline  
Aug 16th, 2006, 03:30 PM
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We love the high mountains and jaw-dropping scenery in Ecuador. We are in language school in both Quito and Cuenca for the summer with side trips to haciendas and markets, national parks, Vilcabamba, Galapagos. If you want help contact [email protected]. Better yet, call Hernan or Amparo at Zyrkan cel.096150171 /[email protected] Amparo lived in NYC and Hernan will drive you anywhere, anytime. They are such good company and full of personality and ideas. We are using them for three trips and are storing our luggage at their house! Tell them Paula sent you! PS Go to Villa Rosa or Sta. Lucia in Cuenca for a great meal.
southernpaula is offline  
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