Active Adventures |  Tapir -  Ecuador Volcano and Jungle Adventure

For an extraordinary way to see mainland Ecuador, the 'Tapir' is packed with exciting and varied activities, wonderful scenery, and the chance to meet the local people. On this Ecuador adventure tour you’ll hike through virgin Amazon rainforest, around high volcanic plateaus and the fertile highlands surrounded by ‘The Valley of Volcanoes’. You’ll cycle the Chaquinan trail, visit an indigenous family, and soak in hot springs in an incredible Ecuadorian highland setting.You’ll go on a waterfall hike in the Amazon jungle, and explore Quito – Ecuador’s cosmopolitan and colonial highland capital city – it’s all here!

  • Highlights

    Bike Chaquinan trail Puembo to Cumbaya

    Explore Baños

    Explore Quito

    Explore the Amazon jungle

    Hike Cayambe-Coca Ecological Reserve

    Soak in hot springs

    Visit a traditional hacienda

    Visit an indigenous Amazon family

    Waterfalls hike

  • What's Included

    All accommodations
    Charming hotels in Quito and Banos.
    Hacienda in Cotapaxi.
    Eco Lodge in the jungle.

    All activities
    If the Kauri trip is our ultimate multi-adventure itinerary in New Zealand, the Tapir trip has to take that prize in South America. Over just 7 days you'll hike, bike, horse ride, ascend a waterfall and relax in hot springs!

    All domestic transport
    Airport transfers on the first and last days.
    All ground transport in a comfortable, air-conditioned van.
    Jungle canoe ride.

    All guiding services
    You’ll have an experienced Active Adventures guide with you for the entire duration as well as specialist local guides in select locations - the perfect mix!

    All meals
    Breakfast, lunch and dinner, except in Banos where you'll be free to eat dinner where you choose.

  • Pricing

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      • Start Date:16 Aug 20
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      • Start Date:2 Jan 22
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      • Start Date:30 Jan 22
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      • Start Date:27 Feb 22
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      • Start Date:22 May 22
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      • Start Date:19 Jun 22
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    Please note: while prices are accurate at time of loading they are subject to change due to currency fluctuations and currency surcharges may apply. Please check price at time of booking
  • Itinerary

    DAY 1 - ARRIVE QUITO, BIKE PUEMBO TO CUMBAYA

    Your trip begins in Ecuador’s capital city, Quito. Today is definitely a highlight of the ‘Tapir’ trip. The Chaquinan is a wonderful trail for biking and walking, it is a well maintained track on a disused railway through the Chiche River valley and other countryside features. We’ll cycle part of the trail, from Puembo to Cumbaya, where you will encounter great views, intriguing tunnels and the occasional bar or café. You can ride at your own pace through the tranquil landscape inhabited by native birds. On a clear day you may catch a glimpse of the perfect cone-like, snow-capped peak of Cotopaxi at 5,897 metres (19,347 feet). The scenery is magical! Later, we’ll make ourselves at home at Hacienda Porvenir, a typical, family-run Ecuadorian ranch, where we’ll share our first meal together!Hacienda Porvenir, Cotopaxi (Lunch, Dinner)Biking Distance: 20 kilometres (12 miles), 1.5-2 hoursElevation Gain: 200 metres (656 feet)Elevation Loss: 200 metres (656 feet)

     

    DAY 2 - HORSE RIDING RUMINAHUI HEIGHTS

    This morning, after a hearty breakfast we’ll set off for our spectacular ride to the heights of Rumiñahui. The first portion of the ride we’ll walk, until we get acquainted with the horses. There are great possibilities of going on a faster pace, to either trot or canter on the high plateau. When we reach the base of the central summit of Rumiñahui, we’ll stop for a hot drink. Around this area there’s a high chance of spotting Andean birds, herds of wild horses and wild bravo cattle. This is a superb ride that allows riders of all abilities the chance to immerse in the local Chagra culture, all the while enjoying panoramic views of at least a dozen volcanoes. Later, we’ll drive through the ‘Valley of the Volcanoes’ to Baños, a beautiful mountain village in the Rio Pastaza Valley.Hotel Volcano, Baños (All meals)

     

    DAY 3 - FREE TIME IN BAÑOS

    Baños, nestled between the Rio Pastaza canyon and Tungurahua volcano, is a playground of adventure activities. There are lots of optional activities here, including canyoning, biking, rafting, horse riding and even salsa dancing lessons! The magnificent, subtropical cloud forest here offers incredible hikes and the town is charming too. There are hot springs, great cafés, a beautiful town square and rows of little stores along the sidewalk where the locals weave melocha (toffee).Hotel Volcano, Baños (Breakfast, Dinner)

     

    DAY 4 - AMAZON JUNGLE HIKE, VISIT AN INDIGENOUS FAMILY

    Today we’ll head out of Baños and down the Rio Pastaza Valley. The high cloud forest gives way to lush rainforest, sweeping all the way down the canyon walls into the river below as we descend into Ecuador’s Amazon jungle lowlands. After lunch we’ll journey by motorised canoe to visit the Amazonico Animal Rescue Centre where we can see volunteers helping threatened species, such as capybara, anaconda, ocelots and tucan, to readapt to their natural habitat ready for release back into the wild. Afterwards we’ll take the time to visit a local Napo River family. This is a real highlight of the trip – you’ll learn how these small indigenous communities maintain their traditional ways of life and get some sense of the important role the rainforest plays in their lives.Sacha Sisa Lodge, Arajuno River (All meals)Hiking Distance: 1 kilometre (0.6 mile), 1-2 hoursElevation Gain: 800 metres (2,624 feet)Elevation Loss: 800 metres (2,624 feet)

     

    DAY 5 - WATERFALLS HIKE, SOAK IN HOT SPRINGS

    We’ll travel deeper into the rainforest today and hike along a stream to a series of waterfalls. With local specialist guides by your side, we’ll safely pick our way up through the cascading water. This is a wonderful chance to cool off and it’s a lot of fun! Once we’re above the waterfalls, we traverse a rainforest ridge to the trailhead. After lunch, we head back into the highlands to Papallacta, taking in the cloud forest and mountain views along the way. Tonight, we’ll soak in glorious hot springs that sit right outside our rooms.Termas Papallacta, Ecuadorian Cloud Forest (All meals) - 3,300 metres (10,826 feet)Hiking Distance: 4 kilometres (2.5 miles), 3-5 hoursElevation Gain: 800 metres (2,624 feet)Elevation Loss: 800 metres (2,624 feet)

     

    DAY 6 - SOAK IN HOT SPRINGS OR HIKE IN CAYAMBE-COCA ECOLOGICAL RESERVE, QUITO

    This morning you’ll have the choice - either relax in the surrounding hot springs and let the healing waters sooth your muscles or take a hike in the Andean grasslands, beginning at the South American continental divide at around 3,000 metres (10,000 feet) before making your way back down to the lodge. The weather here is changeable, so we have a variety of hikes to choose from depending on the conditions. This reserve, full of grasslands and little lakes, is the natural habitat of the spectacled bear, so we’ll keep our eyes peeled for the chance to see one. Then we’ll travel back to Quito where we’ll have the afternoon free to explore the city. We’ll meet again this evening for our final celebratory dinner in Ecuador.Hotel EB, Quito (All meals)Hiking Distance: 5 kilometres (3.1 miles), 3-5 hoursElevation Gain: 700 metres (2,296 feet)Elevation Loss: 700 metres (2,296 feet)

     

    DAY 7 - QUITO, DEPART FOR HOME

    Today is the last day of your ‘Tapir’ trip. If you have time to spare, we’re happy to help with some ideas for what you can do for the rest of your time here. You’ll return home relaxed and refreshed from all the great activities, fine food and friendly people you’ve met while travelling with us in Ecuador!(Breakfast)

 

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