18 days,Quito to Quito

Feel like a local at an Amazon homestay, relax on Ecuador's beaches, witness Andean scenery, ride by train to the Devil's Nose, learn from the locals at an indigenous community, shop the Otavalo Market

If you want to sample the region’s highlights without sacrificing some of its lesser-known gems, there’s no better way to experience Ecuador's dramatic scenery and colourful people. Visit the Amazon and a shaman for an incredible introduction to indigenous culture, and witness lush jungles and exotic wildlife. Staying in simple hotels and homestays and using public transport will keep you grounded in the local customs and culture. We'll travel from the Avenue of the Volcanoes to relaxing Pacific beaches and mountain hot springs. This adventure offers up a great combination of must-see highlights and free time to explore on your own.

What's Included

  • Amazon Jungle homestay (2 nts)
  • Baños stay
  • Train excursion to Devil's Nose
  • Machalilla National Park stay
  • Indigenous community homestay (San Clemente)
  • Otavalo Market visit
  • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities
  • 6 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 4 dinners. (Allow USD305-400 for meals not included.)
  • Public bus, truck, motorized canoe, train.
  • Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides.
  • Small group experience; Max 16, avg 12
  • Simple hotels (12 nts), Amazon community stay (2 nts), overnight bus (1 nt), indigenous community homestay (2 nts, multi-share).
Map of the route for Click to enlarge
Places Visited


Day 1Quito

Arrive at any time.

Day 2Quito/Tena(1B)

Head down winding roads to the Amazon Basin and spend the night in Tena.

Day 3Tena(1B, 1L, 1D)

Enjoy a free day in Tena with options like visiting an animal rescue centre, caving, and whitewater rafting. Later, head for 2 nights with a local Quichua family at a homestay in a small Amazonian village. Enjoy nature walks and visits with the local shaman.

Day 4Tena(1B, 1L, 1D)

Spend the day exploring the area around the homestay, learning more about local life in the jungle.

Day 5Tena/Baños

Travel to Baños and enjoy numerous outdoor optional activities available like hiking, horseback riding, and mountain biking or soaking in the hot springs.

Day 6Baños

Enjoy free time to experience all this adventurous town has to offer.

Day 7Baños/Alausí

Travel to Alausí via Riobamba and take in the architecture of this local town.

Day 8Alausí/Guayaquil

Board the train for an included excursion bound for the Devil's Nose. After, continue by bus to Guayaquil, the largest city in Ecuador.

Day 9Guayaquil/Puerto López

Head to the beach town Puerto Lopez and Machalilla National Park. There are tons of activities in the area to take part in over the next few days.

Days 10–11Puerto López

Enjoy free time to explore. Optional activities include a day trip to Isla de la Plata, hiking in Machalilla National Park, a visit to a local community reforestation project, snorkelling or relaxing on the beach. Opt to go whale watching (when in season).

Day 12Puerto López/Quito

Spend another full day in Puerto López before an overnight bus to Quito.

Day 13Quito

Arrive in the morning and enjoy a free day in Quito. Opt to take a city tour, ride the cable car up the nearby volcano or relax in one of the city's many cafés and restaurants.

Day 14Quito/San Clemente(1B, 1L, 1D)

Travel to the indigenous community of San Clemente. Interact with the locals and learn about their traditional ways during a homestay. Opt to enjoy a cultural evening and show with typical food.

Day 15San Clemente(1B, 1L, 1D)

Spend a full day here with optional hikes to learn about the area's medicinal plants or trek up the Imbabura Mountain. Interact with the locals and learn about their traditions.

Day 16San Clemente/Otavalo(1B)

Head to Otavalo, famous for its market. Opt to visit the Peguche Waterfall and Cotacachi leather market or hike around Cuicocha Lake.

Day 17Otavalo/Quito

Explore some more before travelling back to Quito in the afternoon for one final night out in the capital city.

Day 18Quito

Depart at any time.

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South America
Amazon, Ecuador, 1 more …
21 days
Type Small Group Physical Grading 3

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