Conquering the roof of the world: Chimborazo volcano

Technical characteristics

Description of the circuit : A short road-trip on the volcano avenue discovering the Andean culture and astounding landscapes.

Travel Theme : Culture, photography and natural observations

Group : 12

Duration : 3 days

Arrival city : Quito

Departure city : Quito

Physical Level : Moderate, Medium, Maximum height: 5000msnm

Transport : Private

Day 1: Quito - Market of Zumbahua - Quilotoa volcano

When reference is made to Alexander Von Humbold his name is very quickly associated with the Andes. And it is precisely through the Andes that this 3-day itinerary will take us.  The Pan-American highway, towards the south, crosses indigenous villages, landscapes of valleys and patchwork, ravines and crops, following the famous avenue of the volcanoes. After 2 hours of route we will arrive at the small indigenous town of Zumbahua where we will attend the traditional market, preserved in part from the ravages of modernity.  Here traditions are mixed with colors and flavors. In this semi-arid valley, villagers still use llamas as pack animals to transport native tubercles or freshly harvested tropical fruits from the western slopes. Then they will climb up to the turquoise lagoon of Quilotoa. From the sharp edges of the crater, the lights rival the colors and submerge the landscape in a magical atmosphere. Possibility of descending on foot 200 meters to the shores of the lagoon, accompanied by flocks of sheep and llamas.  We will take advantage of the sunset lights to make some photographic stops of the landscapes of crops and scenes of daily life.  Dinner and night in a rustic hacienda (Hacienda La Andaluza).

Included: Lunch, dinner, guide and transportation

Day 2: The giant Chimborazo

For a long time considered the highest summit in the world, the Chimborazo was, for Humboldt, much more than a simple explorer's challenge. It was not only for glory or feat that he wanted to conquer its flanks.  His intentions were actually complex. He wanted to measure atmospheric pressures, heights, temperatures, chemistry, collect plants, mosses and stones, draw his landscapes, test hypotheses, make maps and observe from the heights the unknown part of volcanoes. Following in the footsteps of these explorers, we will cross the different altitudinal gradients of the "colossus of the Andes" through the sandy steppes to the foot of the glacier. The cuts along the road will allow us to interpret the geological and volcanological past of the region. We will look for the flora and fauna typical of these ecosystems, perfectly adapted to solar radiation, extreme temperatures and winds. We will look in particular for the Hummingbird Estrella del Chimborazo, the endemic subspecies of the Paramo Fox, the stealthy Agachona Ventrirrufa and we will have the opportunity to observe a great quantity of Vicuñas. Lunch in the first refuge. For the people with more physical condition we will have the opportunity to climb on foot to the second refuge (5000msnm). Dinner and night in the same Hosteria. (Hacienda La Andaluza).

Included: Lunch, dinner, guide and transportation

Day 3: Cotopaxi - Quito

After a good traditional breakfast, we will have about 2 hours of route, through a mosaic of traditional crops: quinoa, amaranth and all kinds of legumes and tubercles, to reach the Cotopaxi National Park. Its iconic volcano is the second highest peak in the country (5987 meters) and one of the most monitored active volcanoes in the world. A short walk around the Limpiopungo lagoon framed by the Cotopaxi, Rumiñahui and Sincholagua volcanoes at more than 3,800 meters will allow us to discover some very particular landscapes and high Andean flora. If the weather allows it, you will be able to climb on foot to the first Refuge located more than 4800 meters above sea level where you will be able to approach the glacier. For the more reckless we will also have the option of riding through the herbaceous moors on the flanks of Rumiñahui. Lunch in a high altitude lodge in front of Sincholagua. Return to Quito at the end of the afternoon.

Included: Breakfast, lunch, guide and transportation

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Conquering the roof of the world: Chimborazo volcano

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Net price per person depending on group size

Choose Number of people: Price Per Person: $395.00

Our prices include
  • Pick up from your hotel
  • Private transport
  • Specialized bilingual guide
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner and boxlunch for the days indicated.
  • Accommodation in double rooms in hotels of superior standard category.
  • Water
Our prices not include
  • Soft and alcoholic beverages
  • Entrances to the different sites of visits
  • Tips
  • Personal expenses
  • Transfer Fees
  • VAT (12%) only for resident clients and Ecuadorians