Ride Overview - Ecuador Volcano Ride
A horseback riding vacation through the Avenue of Volcanos in Ecuador! This ride was ranked as one of the “World’s Great Horse Treks” by CNN Travel. Experience the beauty of the Ecuadorean Andes. Ride through the Andean paramo, a vast Andean ecosystem. Cross paths with the enchanting Chagras, the skilled Ecuadorean cowboys of the Andes. They will often pause from their hard work on the Paramo to greet you. You may see the great alpaca and llama herds. Their shaggy coats protect them from the harsh elements of mountain life. Their wool is a key ingredient to a great sweater or poncho. Trails cross rolling grassy, wildflowers and microclimate ravines. RIDING IN ECUADOR
Your route will include the Corazon Volcano and the Cloud Forest Reserve. At the cloud forest, you will be able to observe giant guneras, orchids, and birds. An Inca trail will lead to the traditional village of Isinlivi. Best of all is the backdrop of the majestic Cotopaxi Volcano. Your lodging includes comfortable haciendas and one night in a secure mountain refuge. This will be a wondrous ride! RIDING IN ECUADOR
“…It was a great experience and your warm hospitality.. and the absolutely top scenery made the trip! ..the hacienda is a wonderful place to stay..I would like to compliment the delicious food, all the local fresh specialties which I really appreciated.”
Ride Itinerary - Ecuador Volcano Ride
Transfer from the airport to the hacienda. You will meet your fellow riders and guide at dinner. Accommodations: La Alegria
During a ride in the arena, you will become acquainted with your horse and tack. Next, you will ride around the neighboring haciendas nestled in the west Andes. This day is key to acclimatize to the altitude and environment as well as your horse and tack. After dismounting, you will have lunch in the Hacienda house; visit the milking barn and the aging cheese cave. Your day ends with a dip in the hot tub and relaxing near the fireplace. Accommodations: Hacienda La Alegria Riding hours: 4 hours
As your trail crosses extensive pastures and eucalyptus forests, you will have a nice view of the “Volcano Avenue.” From there, you can also appreciate the green and fertile Machachi Valley. as well as see the east mountain routes your group will take the next day. Your route will then ascend near Corazon Volcano up to 13,000 feet/4,000 meters and descend through the Cloud forest reserve. At the cloud forest, you will be able to observe a great biodiversity of plants and flowers, including giant guneras, orchids, and birds such as the turkey of the forest. In the afternoon, you will arrive at Hacienda Bomboli at 9,800 feet/3,000 meters. After a great meal, your day ends relaxing by the fireplace while enjoying the sunset and watching the lights of the villages near the coast. Accommodation: Hacienda Bomboli Riding hours: 4 hours
In the morning, your group will learn about orchids and cloud forest plants during a walk in the Hacienda gardens. You will then mount up for a ascending trail through a forest with hundreds of flowers and plants. Ecuador has mega-bio-diversity on plants and flowers. An old road that was built in 1873 to connect Quito with the coast will then lead to Hacienda La Alegria for lunch. The remainder of the day you can enjoy the hot tub and relax by the fireplace. Accommodation: Hacienda La Alegria Riding hours: 6 hours
Your group will be transferred by car to start your 4-day adventure in the southern Andes. You will ride by the Inca trail to the small village of Isinlivi. From here, it is possible to admire the nice scenery from one valley to another. The colors and the mountains make the changes from paramo to eroded land full of different color patches. In the distance, you will see the Eastern Mountain Chain. In Isinlivi, you will find your lodge which was started by an entrepreneur from the UK 16 years ago and is now owned by a Dutch couple. Accommodations: Lodge at Isinlivi Riding hours: 5 hours
In the morning, your group will take a small walk onto a hill to get the horses. From this viewpoint, you can see the canyon was formed by several eruptions of Quilotoa Volcano. You will then start your ride up the hill to reach the Quilotoa Crater Lake Volcano. Crossing a few villages and paths, you will discover the age old agriculture of lupins, potatoes, quinoa and barley. Volcano pumice and dry soil hinder agriculture so only a few people live on this region. The Quilotoa Volcano erupted 1,280 years ago and the summit is 13,000 feet/4,000 meters above sea level, where Your lodge will be found at the edge of the volcano. Here you will enjoy an amazing view of the breathtaking Quilotoa Crater Lake. The 3-kilometer-wide caldera was formed by the collapse of this volcano after the last eruption. The water color changes with the light. Accommodations: Quilotoa Lodge, next to the crater lake 13,000 feet/4000 meters high. Riding hours: 5 hours
Today is a long journey in the saddle. You will ride to Sigchos, the village that was known as the “last home” of the Inca general Ruminahui. After breakfast, your group heads north by the ridge of Quilotoa Crater Lake. The trail goes across the highest mountain heading north-west. There, you will find some small dairy farms and a couple of artisanal cheese makers. Your group will stop for a short visit and cheese tasting. Your guide will buy some cheese to mature (age) in the cave at Hacienda la Alegria. Arriving in the afternoon at Hacienda San Jose, a working dairy farm and guesthouse, you will have time for a good meal, Jacuzzi, sauna and a comfortable night. Accommodations: Hacienda San Jose Riding hours: 7 hours
You will ride through a dramatic landscape which includes steep ravines. Even though, you can visualize where you are heading and it looks near, your group will have to cross several mountains chains to get there. This area is a combination of forest, rock peaks and eroded land from past centuries. The last riding day will pass through several narrow paths well known as an Inca path. Your group will make your way back to Hacienda La Alegria by car for dinner and overnight. Accommodations: Hacienda La Alegria Riding hours: 6 hours
After breakfast, you will be transferred to the airport.
The guide reserves the right to change the itinerary based on unforeseen circumstances.
Ride Details - Ecuador Volcano Ride
Dates: January 8th – 18th, February 12th – 20th, April 23rd – May 1st, May 21st – 29th, July 23rd – 31st, September 10th – 18th, September 24th – October 2nd, October 8th – 16th, November 19th – 27th, December 15th – 23rd
(Dates on request for groups of 2 or more)
Best Months to Ride: June – September. Peak season is October to December.
Meeting Place: Quinto Airport
Riding days: 5
Daily Riding Hours 6 – 7
Pace: Moderate, trots and canters
Riding ability: STRONG INTERMEDIATE: Confident and in control at all paces including posting trots, two point canters and gallops in open country. Comfortable in the saddle for several hours. Capable of crossing rivers. Capable of leading horses along narrow trails.
Group size: 2-12
Horses: Criollo, Criollo mixed with Arab, Andalusian
Saddles: Argentina, Western, Calvary, McClellan with sheepskin covers
Hotel/s: Haciendas *** and **** star
Health Concerns: Highest elevation: 13,900 feet. Please talk to your doctor about altitude sickness prevention and required vaccinations.
Price: $2,500.00 per person, double occupancy. $150.00 single supplement
**2, 4, 7, 8, 11 and 12 riding day options are available. Ask us for details.
***For total group size under 3 – $150.00 small group fee may apply.
Includes: 8 nights’ lodging, all meals, 8 days horseback riding, horse, guide, necessary equipment, national park fee,
Not included: airfare, airport tax, local taxes and gratuities, transfers to and from Quito ($100 roundtrip)
ANNUAL TEMPERATURE AND RAINFALL:
Ecuador Volcano Ride: Gallery
Ecuador Volcano Ride