Between the eastern and western side of the Andes of Ecuador, there is a strip called The Avenue of Volcanos. It is 300 kilometres long and has Ecuador’s highest volcanoes, nine of them are above 5,000 meters above sea level. This journey includes visits to historic haciendas, Andean communities and markets. You’ll visit to Cotopaxi National Park passing through spectacular scenery, fertile valleys surrounded by snow-covered peaks and you will ride the train along the famous “Devils’ nose”. This is the perfect tour do immerse into the traditions and customs of the local people and marvel at the Ecuadorian Andes’ natural wonders.
Drive along the Pan-American highway known as “The Volcanoes Avenue” towards one of the world’s highest active volcano, Cotopaxi (5,897 metres above sea level). Drive through a pine forest to Limpiopungo lagoon, an Andean lake located at 3,800m.a.s.l, along the slopes of the magnificent Cotopaxi volcano. In the afternoon visit an Indigenous market. Afterwards continue to Baños, and have a short tour of the city.
This morning, after breakfast, continue touring around this beautiful city. Baños is a small city located in a valley with waterfalls and hot springs nearby. One of the main attractions is the Tungurahua volcano. Today’s tour will begin by visiting the famous waterfalls “Manto de la Novia” and “Pailon del Diablo”, later go to a lookout point to see the Tungurahua active volcano. Continue to Riobamba and stay overnight.
Very early in the morning, you will be transferred to Alausí’s train station to board the famous “Devil’s Nose”. This section of railroad is a masterpiece of railway engineering, commonly named “the most difficult railway in the world”. The descent is extraordinary; start the ride at an altitude of 2,346 m.a.sl. and go down to 1,860 meters in just 30 minutes, in a zigzag-carved railway tracks. Later drive to Ingapirca Ruins, the best preserved and unique Inca ruins in Ecuador. Continue to Cuenca this afternoon and stay overnight.
After breakfast, the tour begins with a visit to the city’s historic centre, a picturesque and traditional neighbourhood of Cuenca. Here, you will visit the main attractions incluind church of San Sebastian, Calderon Park, the Flower Plaza and the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, considered as of the biggest churches in Latin America. Afterwards, visit “El Paja Toquilla” Hat Factory, where you can observe the process of making the famous Panama hats. The route continues to the “El Barranco del Río Tomebamba,” and the tour will finish at “Mirador de Turi” (scenic viewpoint) to enjoy views over the red-tiled roofs and church domes of Cuenca before returning to your hotel.
After breakfast, only 30 minutes’ drive from Cuenca, you will visit El Cajas National Park which has more than 200 lagoons and is a very important water resource for Cuenca and Ecuador. The rivers that originate here, flow into the Pacific and Amazon. You will have a chance to visit the Toreadora Lagoon and later drive to Guayaquil, were you will enjoy a short city tour before you are transferred to the airport for your onwards flight.