Day 1: Cuenca City tour
In the morning you will fly from Guayaquil or Quito to Cuenca. Cuenca is considered as both the cultural metropolis and the arts and crafts centre of Ecuador. The city and its surrounding countryside are fantastic places to buy ceramics, embroidery, leather goods and woven baskets.
On arrival you will be picked up from the airport and taken to the Hotel El Dorado. After a short break you will start with a visit of the Panama hat factory for which the city is famous (NB it is not opened on Sundays). Afterwards you will explore the colonial part of the city where you will encounter historic churches, many art and craft shops and a colourful flower market. Set amongst beautiful old colonial houses, the area has a charming atmosphere, for which UNESCO declared Cuenca as World Heritage Site in 1999.
At midday you will feast on local cuisine in a typical town restaurant, after which you will have a pleasant stroll along the river to aid digestion! Your evening meal will be served at the hotel. Overnight in the Hotel El Dorado. B/L/D
Day 2: Inca ruins of Ingapirca
After a good breakfast you will drive to the famous ‘Ingapirca’ ruins (Quechua for “wall rocks of the Inca”) the most important and well preserved of Ecuador’s Inca ruins situated to the North of Cuenca. There you can wander around the beautiful site and imagine the scenes prior to the Spanish conquest. A visit to the museum will reveal further details of life there at the end of the 15th Century. After the visit you will have lunch and in the afternoon drive back to Cuenca. The rest of the day is at your own disposal. Overnight in the Hotel El Dorado. B/L/-
Day 3: National Park Cajas
Today you will drive to the Cajas National park, which is situated 15 km west of Cuenca. In this recreation area there are about 200 lagoons spread at altitudes between 3.150 m and 4.450 m. The lakes are connected by small rivers, whose crystal-clear waters flow into the Atlantic Ocean as well as into the Pacific. You will spend the day hiking through the park and its glorious rugged scenery. Around midday you will have lunch and in the afternoon you will return to Cuenca. Overnight in the Hotel El Dorado. B/L/-
Day 4: Cuenca – Guayaquil
After breakfast you will visit the Museo del Banco Central. It houses the ethnographical museum, Inca ceramic art, old city photos as well as changing art exhibitions. The building is right next to the ruins of the Pumapungo Palace which can also be visited. The museum is not open on Sundays, when instead the Museo de la Cuidad will be visited; this museum houses an interesting collection of ethnographical, colonial and pre-colombian exhibits.
In the afternoon you will be taken to the airport and from there you fly back to Guayaquil or Quito. End of services. B/L/-
NB: No return flights on Saturdays
B: Breakfast / L: Lunch / D: Dinner
USD 664,- per person (Minimum 2 People)
USD 1128,- per person (1 Person)
Single supplement USD 120.-
All transfers, flights Guayaquil (or Quito ) – Cuenca – Guayaquil ( or Quito ), all activities and excursions mentioned in the program, accommodation in the mentioned hotels or hotels of the same category (double room with private bath), all meals mentioned in the program, English-speaking guide, entrance fees
International flight, beverages, international airport tax, personal expenses, tips, travel insurance