Ecuador Trekking

Ecuador Trekking

From £2,025
Altitude 5,000m Grade: T3

Exploring the best of rural Ecuador with optional climbs, multi day hikes with short transfers.

Ecuador Explorer

This Ecuador Trekking itinerary has been specially developed for people who wish to visit this fascinating area without feeling the need to 'tick off' the tops of the volcanoes for which the region is best known. Ecuador's 'Avenue des Volcans' is at the northernmost tip of the Andean Chain and contains some of the world’s highest and most impressive free-standing volcanoes. From the colourful capital of Quito we first visit the Otavalo region in the north of the country for four days, hiking round lakes and lagoons and staying in a variety of camps, cabins and hostels.

After a brief stop in Quito, we now head south to explore the Cotopaxi National Park where we trek up to the base of the glacier tumbling off the mountain before heading across to the Western Cordillera for our last few days of trekking. We stay the night beside the emerald lake in the Quilotoa crater, and walk out the following day along the Toachi River to finish our trek at the Indian village of Tigua.

There will be time to shop in the Indian markets before returning to Quito and flying home, or, since you have come so far you may be tempted to extend your stay to either climb Cotopaxi (5897m) or take a cruise around the renowned Galapagos Islands.

This trip will operate with a minimum of 4 participants with a local leader.

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Dates & Prices

Show prices in
All prices in Euros are guide rates, not live rates
All prices in US Dollars are guide rates, not live rates


Flight Inclusive
With Flight
Land Only
With Flight
5th Jul 2024 - 22nd Jul 2024 Spaces18 £2,025£3,025 Book Now
7th Dec 2024 - 22nd Dec 2024 Spaces16 £2,025£3,025 Book Now
4th Jan 2025 - 19th Jan 2025 Spaces16 £2,025£3,025 Book Now

* A deposit of £400 will be required at checkout.


Extras can be added per-person when you book onto a date

Climb Cotopaxi £250+2 days
Galapagos Islands from £1,895 (4 days) to £2,600 (5 days) £1,895

* A deposit of £200 (or the full extra price, whichever is lower) will be required at checkout for each extra added per-person on this trip

What's Included

  • Estimated International flights from London (flight inclusive package
  • Accommodation - 4 nights hotels, 3 nights camping, 3 nights rural hostels / cabins
  • Meals - 13 breakfasts, 12 lunches and 10 evening meals
  • Park fees as appropriate
  • All road transfers in country (unless indicated in 'exclusions')
  • Local guides
  • Local trekking staff to assist (cook and porters)
  • All camping equipment (excl. personal kit)
  • Adventure Peaks kitbag. A logoed top will be substituted for returning and non-UK clients
  • 24hr back-up and support from our UK staff
  • Museum and monument entry fees
  • Sleeping mattress
  • 15% discount off the RRP on equipment and clothing purchased from Adventure Peaks shop

What's Excluded

  • Personal equipment
  • Travel Insurance
  • Drinks and personal spending
  • Tips for local staff
  • Meals if not indicated in 'inclusions'
  • Visas (if required)


Days 1 and 2 Depart UK and arrive Quito. You will be met at the airport, transferred to your hotel and in the evening enjoy a welcome dinner with your guide.

Day 3 We visit the old city of Quito, the best conserved colonial town in South America. The fabulously rich decorated churches, museums, squares and the numerous colonial buildings come under the banner of 'Cultural Heritage of Humanity'. Lunch will be provided in a restaurant on the way to 'La Mitad del Mundo' (the Middle of the World), site that marks the equatorial line and which is located 22km north of Quito. We visit a small ethnographic museum before continuing north for about two hours to the small Indian town of Otavalo.

Day 4 We drive up to the Mojanda lagoons and hike around this beautiful complex of 4 lagoons. There is an option to climb the volcano of Cerro 'Fuya-Fuya' (4294m) which takes about 3 hours to reach the summit. 5 to 6 hours walking.

Day 5 A pleasant hike downhill takes us towards the San Pablo lake. Here we  meet with our vehicle for the short transfer to the beautiful Cuicocha Lake (3000m) were we spend the night in comfortable cabins overlooking the crater. 5 to 6 hours walking.

Day 6 After breakfast we explore the beautiful Cuicocha lagoon, an old volcanic caldera transformed by nature into a lake. We walk right around the large caldera, with the Cotacachi volcano forming a beautiful backdrop. A short vehicle transfer takes us to the small village of La Esperanza. 3 to 4 hours walking.

Day 7 We leave early for the climb up Imbabura volcano. The climb takes us from 3400m to 4200m, with beautiful views of the Otavalo area and Yahuarcocha Lake. If everyone is feeling good we can continue to the summit of Taita Imbabura (4630m), which does not involve any difficulty but makes a long day. In the afternoon we drive back to Quito. 6 to 8 hours walking.

Day 8 After breakfast we leave for the Cotopaxi National Park (1.5 hrs drive).  Hiking across the high plateau at the foot of the volcano through Andean 'Páramo' we are rewarded with beautiful views of all the surrounding peaks, such as the Sinchologua and the Rumiñahui. We will visit some pre-Inca ruins. 4 to 5 hours walk. Our camp is at the foot of the splendid snow-covered cone of the Cotopaxi (5897m) volcano. 4 to 5 hours walking.

Day 9 Today we climb to the summit of the volcano Rumiñahui (4722m). The ascent is straightforward with some easy scrambling near the top. 5 to 6 hours walking.

Day 10 After breakfast we drive on a dusty road towards the Cotopaxi refuge (4600m). The road ends 200m below the refuge which is reached on foot n 45 minutes. We continue up slowly to visit the Cotopaxi glacier and return to the refuge for lunch. After lunch we walk back down to the campsite taking a beautiful path on the flanks of the volcano. A short transfer takes us to the small village of Insilivi in the Western Cordillera, starting point of our next trek. 5 to 7 hours walking.

Day 11 We now start our 3-day trek through the contrasting Western Cordillera. No camping as our nights will be spent in delightful Innsrun by the native Indians. This hike is an opportunity to immerse ourselves into the Indian life and to traverse beautiful Andean landscapes. This is an undulating walk passing through hamlets and cultivated valleys such as the Rio Toachi.

Day 12 Walking through an impressive canyon and passing through villages we eventually arrive at one of the most beautiful sites in Ecuador; the lagoon of Quilotoa. This is a still active volcanic crater filled with a lake. We spend the night overlooking the lake.

Day 13 For our final trekking day we hike between the lagoon of Quilotoa and the village of Tigua following the canyon of the Toachi River. At the end of the afternoon we put our feet up for the last time in a small refitted family farm near the Indian village of Tigua.

Day 14 We visit the Saquisili Indian market, authentic, colourful, and one of the most important native markets of Ecuador. Age-old typical Indian habits and customs can still be observed there. The market spreads across eight plazas in the village, each having its own specialty. Trade and indigenous crafts occupy an important place here - a great opportunity to buy souvenirs. A 2-hour drive then takes us back to Quito for our last night in Ecuador.

Days 15/16 Transfer to the airport to connect with your flight home, arriving back the following day.


It is essential for a trip of this type that you are adequately insured. When researching insurance options, please ensure the policy covers you for the following:

  • Cancellation or curtailment
  • Helicopter rescue (most insurance companies will no longer cover for ‘search and rescue’ but providing you stay with the group, they will assist with ‘rescue’)
  • Repatriation
  • The altitude that you are expected to attain
  • The location especially when travelling to Antarctica
  • Grade of trek/climb/expedition
  • Medical cover

Adventure Peaks partners with Global Rescue to offer the world’s leading travel protection services. Medical and security emergencies happen. When they do, we rely on Global Rescue to provide our clients with medical, security, travel risk and crisis response services. Without a membership, an emergency evacuation could cost over $100,000. More than one million members trust Global Rescue to get them home safely when the unexpected happens. We highly recommend our clients enroll with Global Rescue, in particular for peaks over 7000m:

We are aware the following provide insurance:

For UK based clients:

Expeditions and Treks under 7000m - Campbell Irvine Direct :

HCC Medical Insurance Services: LLC Tel: 1-800-605-2282
Travelex Ins. Services: Tel: 1-800 228 9792
True Traveller Ins: Tel: 0333 999 3140 for treks including over 4500m
Austrian Alpine Club (UK) Tel: +44 (0)1929 556870
Rothwell & Towler: Tel: 0345 908 0161 (under 6400m)
J S Insurance: Tel: 0844 848 1500
Snowcard: Tel: 01295 660836
The B.M.C.: Tel: 0161 445 6111 (call and speak to Jim. Please note the BMC cannot cover Mt Damavand)
Dogtag: Tel: 0800 036 4824 (Check excess etc)

For non-UK based clients:

HCC Medical Insurance Services: LLC Tel: 1-800-605-2282
Travelex Ins. Services: Tel: 1-800 228 9792
True Traveller Ins: Tel: 0333 999 3140 for treks including over 4500m
Austrian Alpine Club (UK): Tel: +44 (0)1929 556870
AXA Worldwide Travel Ins: Tel: +44 (0)844 874 0360
Ingle International: Tel: (USA) 1.800.360.3234
Insure for Less: (Australian clients)

You do not have to use any of the above, but if you make your own insurance arrangements documentary evidence of your own policy is required.

Please forward the details of your Insurance as soon as you have it: we need the insurance company’s name, their 24 hour emergency telephone number and your insurance policy number –


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