Ride Overview - Paramos Hacienda Ride
You will enjoy the striking natural beauty of southern Ecuador’s pristine paramos while lodging at luxury historical haciendas each with it’s own place in local history and known for personalized service. Your trails will take you across the glacier formed valleys, wet grasslands intermingled with scrublands and forest patches and then into the cloud forests with small, twisted and gnarled trees. In this unique spot in the Andes, everywhere you look you see the solitude and beauty of a valley bathed in rivers and the silence and ever-present wind of the paramo. This ride has been designed for the spirited traveler who wants to experience something special. Unforgettable activities, magnificent private properties and protected areas, quaint haciendas and hotels, professional staff, excellent equipment, and some of the smoothest horses. RIDING IN ECUADOR
“Our days riding gave us views I have never seen before and chance encounters with abundant wildlife. I highly recommend visiting the farm and saddling up with Fernando. The memories of great friends, good horses and beautiful countryside will last a lifetime.” A.G.
Ride Itinerary - Paramos Hacienda Ride
After you are transferred from the Quito Airport to your comfortable hacienda. Depending on your arrival, you may have time to explore Colonial Quito and its vicinity, with its baroque churches and its museums or the nearby Indian markets.
Departing from Quito to Calderon’s “bread doll” figures. Driving through the Pan American highway toward the Otavalo market, to spend the morning admiring the typical indigenous handicrafts. After lunch, you will continue riding for 3 – 4 hours. You will stay at the Hacienda Pinsaquí, rich with centuries of history, invites you to become part of its magic, tradition, romance and legends. Hacienda Pinsaquí is ideally situated at the base of Imbabura Volcano, just north of the world-famous Otavalo market, and only an hour-and-a-half from Quito, Ecuador’s charming capital. Its location also allows effortless access to the region’s many attractions: the lakes of San Pablo.
Surprising, isn’t it, how often you can work the conversation around to the fact that you’ve slept in a house that belongs to the presidential family? Never mind that this particular President, Ecuador’s Galo Plaza Lasso, has been out of office since 1952. His descendants will treat you like a member of the family at Hacienda Zuleta, a historic retreat in the Andean cloud forest about two and a half hours northeast of Quito. The adobe hacienda, built in 1691, is the centerpiece of a 4,000-acre working farm that includes a dairy, cheese factory, organic garden, tree nursery, trout farm, embroidery workshop, and condor-raising project. Most guests saddle up one of 90 horses and ride out through pine and eucalyptus forests and high-altitude grasslands to pre-Inca archaeological sites amid magnificent volcano views. You can also hike, cycle, or take tours to nearby indigenous villages. The nine guest rooms are appointed with Spanish Colonial antique furniture, down comforters, and linens embroidered by local Indian women. All the rides start at Hacienda Zuleta at about 9,000 ft. Every day’s ride has its particular beauty and charm, including rides in valleys surrounded by mountains, bathed in green lakes on mountain tops, snow-capped Cayambe, ancient pre-Incan earth mounds, waterfalls, dramatic views in or above the clouds. You will see local people work on their land and have a chance to meet a saddle maker. Depending on the weather conditions, you will experience one of 15 different trails.
Your ride will continue on one of the many trails from Hacienda Zuleta.
This ride will last about 4 hours through distinctive valleys and beautiful mountains.
On the slopes of Rumiñahui Volcano, in a truly privileged position, Hacienda El Porvenir is the ideal spot from which to explore Cotopaxi, get to know the Andean way of life at first hand and have thrilling adventures. The farmhouse is located in a very scenic spot, at an altitude of 3,600m, surrounded by four volcanoes, one of which is Cotopaxi. You can enjoy your stay in a comfortable, functional setting. The farmhouse is made from local building material, with colors and style typical of this part of the country for hundreds of years, thus keeping the spirit and essence of Andean construction. The stables, saddle room and corrals add the touches of a real working farm.
Behind the Cotopaxi National Park on the southeastern side of the Cotopaxi Volcano, Hacienda Yanahurco is the largest Andean mountain ranch and private wildlife refuge in Ecuador with 26,000 hectares approximately 65,000 acres. It is a private ecological mountain reserve with comfortable accommodations and full board meals. Yanahurco is the perfect blend of peace and harmony, offering the most exciting adventures, awe-inspiring landscapes, the best highland horses, an abundance of wildlife and birds of the Andes. Your hacienda dates back to Inca times. It was a refuge on the road leading the jungle. This marvelous farm is located in a magical setting surrounded by many volcanoes, such as Cotopaxi 5897 m (19347 ft), Quilindaña 4878 m (16000 ft) that presides over it, and the majestic Antisana 5704 m (18709 ft).
For innumerable ages, the plains of the south face of Cotopaxi have been famous for natural beauty and productivity. The microclimate that exists here has played host to countless human settlements and many diverse cultural developments most of which are still in existence and can be seen in the artisan markets and popular festivals. During colonial times, this region was divided into large estates and lately, into fixes Haciendas (country estates) who had their own land to maintain which continues to this day. Hato Verde is part of this rich tradition whose house had been remodeled by the current owners in strict keeping with original materials and techniques. Now you will appreciate the impeccable masonry work on the walls, developing the colonial-cum-rustic style of the region. This generates a warm and inviting atmosphere with all the comforts and necessities of a boutique hotel. Hacienda of San Agustín de Callo was built on the site of an Inca palace, one of the two most important archaeological Inca sites in Ecuador, and the point furthest north from Cuzco of Imperial style construction, this working farm offers an unrivaled glimpse into Ecuador ‘s rich and colorful past. Since the 15th century, San Agustin de Callo has served as Inca fortress, Augustinian convent and temporary home for the French Geodesic Mission whose scientific results helped to determine the true shape of the planet. Famous visitors include Jorge Juan and Antonio de Ulloa who were appointed by the King of Spain to host the Geodesic Mission in 1736, the awesome scientific enterprise organized and led by Charles-Marie de la Condamine; Alexander von Humboldt German scientist and renowned naturalist and explorer and the illustrious English mountain climber Edward Whymper.
Transfer to the Quito Airport.
Ride Details - Paramos Hacienda Ride
Dates: January 6th – 14th, February 2nd – 10th, March 4th – 11th, July 1st – 8th, October 9th – 17th, November 6th – 13th, December 6th – 13th
Best Months to Ride: June – September. Peak season is October to December.
Airport: Quito Mariscal Sucre
Riding Days: 7
Daily Riding Hours: 4 – 7
Group Size: 2 – 20
Riding Ability: INTERMEDIATE: Confident and in control at all paces including posting trots and canters. Comfortable with descending and ascending trails.
Saddles: Western and English
Horses: Spanish, Criollo
Hotel/s: 3 – 4* historic haciendas
2 – 3 riders: $5,400.00 per person, double occupancy $2,160.00 single supplement
4 – 9 riders: $4,800.00 per person, double occupancy $1,960.00 single supplement
10 – 16 riders: $4,100.00 per person, double occupancy $1,640.00 single supplement
Includes: lodging, meals, horse, guide
Not Included: airfare, transfer to and from the airport ($40.00)
Camping option is available from Quito Cotopaxi to Cuenca and includes Nariz del Diablo Train Ride. Ask us for details.
ANNUAL TEMPERATURE AND RAINFALL:
Paramos Hacienda Ride: Gallery
Paramos Hacienda Ride