Ecuador and Galapagos Travel
  • History and Culture Tour
  • Basilica church in Quito
  • History and Culture Tour, Andes hacienda
  • Cuenca Cathedral
  • History and Culture Tour, Otavalo market
  • Cuicocha Lagoon
  • History and Culture Tour, Otavalo market
  • Handcrafted Hats
  • History and Culture Tour, Quito oldtown
  • Handcrafts market
  • History and Culture Tour, Panecillo Hill
  • Ingapirca Ruins
  • History and Culture Tour, Cuenca oldtown
  • Panecillo Hill
  • History and Culture Tour, Ingapirca Ruins
  • Peguche Waterfall
  • Quito Oldtown Guardian
  • San Francisco Church
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Bygone days and cultural treasures
FROM INCAS TO CONQUISTADORS

This 1-week trip is the perfect introduction to Ecuador's rich history and culture, from the inca empire to spanish colonial times to modernday life.

We begin in Quito with visits to the splendid churches and plazas of the colonial quarter; the city's best museum with fine displays of archealogical finds, gold artifacts and artwork; and the gallery of Guayasamin whose thought-provoking artwork is considered to be the best in the country.

Next stop Otavalo for handicraft shopping at the colourful indian market famed throughout Latin America; overnight at a majestic 17th century hacienda estate; and a visit to learn about local culture in an indigenous village.

Finally to Cuenca, widely-considered to be Ecuador's most pictoresque city, for a tour of the colonial centre, excursion to the inca ruins of Ingapirca, and a chance to try your hand at ceramics.

ITINERARY
Day Activities Meals
1 Arrival Quito - our driver will meet you in airport arrivals and transport you to the majestic Hotel Patio Andaluz (Comfort tour option) in the historic old town district of Quito. Patio Andaluz is an exquisitely-renovated old colonial house located just 1 block from the central plaza of Quito that was declared a UNESCO world heritage site in 1978, and is the only hotel in Quito to hold the Smartvoyager sustainable tourism certificate. The Regular tour option stays at the Sierra Madre colonial style hotel. Free time to relax and acclimatise to your new surroundings. -
2 Quito citytour - time to aquaint yourselves with the best sites of the city of Quito. In the morning a tour of the beautiful colonial plazas and churches as well as panoramic city views atop the Panecillo. After lunch time to explore the excellent Museo del Banco Central - generally considered to have the best archeological exhibits in the country and an excellent introduction to the various cultures that have existed here before us. Overnight in Quito. B
3 Otavalo market and hacienda - transfer north of Quito to visit the indian market at Otavalo, famous across the Americas for it's fine handicrafts and colourful locals. In the afternoon and evening there is freetime to explore the beautiful grounds of Hacienda Cusin (Comfortable Option)- a charming 17th century estate steeped in history and tradition where you can enjoy a peaceful overnight stay. The Regular tour stays at a cosy hotel in central Otavalo. B
4 Indigenous villages, Otavalo - a fascinating day visiting some of the small indian villages surrounding Otavalo. During the trip you will see locals making handicrafts, playing Andean musical instruments, and weaving traditional shawls. You will also visit the beautiful volcanic lake of Cuicocha, and the Peguche Waterfall - a sacred site where the locals take their energizing ritual baths during the festival of the sun god. Overnight in Quito. B
5 Cuenca citytour - an early morning flight down the Andes to the white-washed buildings and cobbled streets of Cuenca. An introductory tour to the colonial highlights of the city including its handsome plazas and domed churches, followed by a ceramics lesson where you can make your own pots in the local style. Overnight in Cuenca. B
6 Ingapirca ruins - an unforgettable visit to the most impressive inca ruins within Ecuador: Ingapirca was built in the 15th century on a strategic hilltop with excellent views over the surrounding countryside. A local guide will explain all about the origin and purpose of the ruins as well as a full lowdown on inca history in Ecuador. There will be freetime in Cuenca in the afternoon to relax or explore some of the citys museums. Overnight in Cuenca. B
7 Quito, Capilla del hombre - return flight to Quito after breakfast. In the afternoon a chance to visit the fascinating Capilla Del Hombre museum which was built by local artist Guayasamin as a tribute to humankind, and the art-work on display depicting the historic suffering and struggle of Latin America's poor indigenous population is extremely moving. Overnight in Quito. B
8 Tour end - the trip ends after breakfast. Our driver can transfer you to Quito airport for your return journey home. B

This tour is designed to run starting on any day of the week, however, if you would like to visit Otavalo on the biggest market day when there are more sellers then please ensure that this visit is a Saturday.

Past Clients Feedback

"Finally a tour that visits traditional sites and takes a real interest in the history of a country. Although short (1 week) there was a lot packed in and we were kept interested and amused throughout by the excellent guides. A real highlight was the interaction with locals around Otavalo! A highly recommended tour." (Peter Cole, UK)

Prices (per person)

# OF PASSENGERS 2014 PRICE
2 $1250 Regular / $1525 Comfort
3 $1115 Regular / $1335 Comfort
4 $1010 Regular / $1235 Comfort
5 $935 Regular / $1195 Comfort
6 or more $895 Regular / $1165 Comfort

Inclusions:

  • Accommodation in double rooms. Triple rooms are also available should a group of odd-numbered passengers wish to avoid paying a single supplment.
  • Transport with local driver throughout tour
  • Meals as listed in itinerary
  • Activities as listed in itinerary
  • Flight : Quito/Cuenca/Quito
  • English-speaking guide for citytours, Otavalo community visit, ingapirca and capilla del hombre

Exclusions:

  • International flights
  • Personal expenses
  • Tips
  • Meals not listed as part of itinerary
  • Local entry fees
  • Single supplement (applies for a single room for somebody travelling within a group). If you are travelling alone then please ask our staff for a solo traveller price quote.