Summary of The Day: There are no scheduled activities on the first day of the tour. On arrival please ask reception when the pre-departure meeting will be held.
At 9,350 feet above sea level, Quito is the second highest capital city in the world after La Paz. It was founded in 1534 by the Spanish and was originally an Inca stronghold. As the headquarters of the recently formed Union of South American Nations, Quito is now regarded as the capital of South American integration. It is situated in a hollow at the base of the live volcano Pichincha and the whole length of the city can be seen from atop Panecillo Hill, where the enormous Statue of the Virgin of Quito stands. The city has two main sections: old and new. The newer quarter comprises the commercial district and some of the city's best restaurants and bars. Old city is characterized by colonial architecture, steep cobblestone streets, busy plazas and indigenous markets.
Summary of The Day: Today we'll take an excursion to the market town of Otavalo. The market has been a tradition since before the Incas. Haggle with the locals for colorful handmade gifts and famous woven textiles.
Summary of The Day: We'll continue by bus to Banos, a spa town famous for its hot thermal springs. Besides soaking in the pools, there are several pathways up into the surrounding mountains. Optional activities include horseback riding (own expense). The less athletically inclined can spend their time relaxing in a cafe or shopping for souvenirs. Banos is the best place to buy beautifully painted balsa wood animals and taste taffy, a local sweet.
Summary of The Day: Our exploration of Banos continues.
Summary of The Day: Today we'll journey to the old colonial town of Cuenca, Ecuador's third largest city. Cuenca is home of the Panama hat and you will have the chance to visit a factory. Cuenca's distinct colonial atmosphere - cobblestone streets, open plazas and whitewashed buildings with ironwork balconies - has earned it the title of UNESCO World Heritage Site. Optional activities include the celebrated Inca ruins of Ingapirca, the country's most important archaeological site. The fortress complex has a central platform where Incas worshipped the sun. The Canari people built the original structures and you can still see the place where these pre-Inca peoples worshipped the moon.
Summary of The Day: Our exploration of Cuenca continues.
Summary of The Day: We'll return to Quito on Day 7.
Summary of The Day: Your adventure of a lifetime comes to an end today. If you have a late flight or have lengthened your stay by adding post-tour accommodation, you will have more time to explore the sights.
|USD $1,088.98||USD $1,157.98|
|+USD $77.00||+USD $98.00|
|+USD $77.00||+USD $98.00|
|+USD $154.00||+USD $196.00|
* You must be at least 18 years old to join the tour.|
* Single Occupancy price applies when one people stays in one standard hotel room.
* Double Occupancy price applies when two people stay in one standard hotel room.
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