Ecuador

Travelers: up to 16
10 days
See Dates & Prices
Arrival Point
Departure Point
Trip Length
10 days
Group Size
up to 16

Meetup Tour

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Ecuador Meetup Tour

Ecuador may be small compared to its neighbors, but it offers the best of the best of South America: sun-kissed beaches, deep indigenous history, friendly locals, and incredibly complex bio-diversity.  

We explore it all on this tour from the beautiful city of Quito to off-the-beaten-path corners of the Amazon where we immerse ourselves in indigenous life. All along the way, we will see a plethora of wildlife.

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parrots at the clay lick Ecuador

Highlights

a woman working the fields in Ecuador

Spend 4 days in the amazon with the women of the Añangu indigenous community

Pacha

Join in a pachamanka ancestral culinary experience

Ride horseback through Cotopaxi National Park

hotel with hot springs ecuador

Soak in volcano heated hot springs right outside your hotel room

wayusada women

Partake in the spiritual wayusada (traditional herbal tea) making ritual with a local family

waterfall from Ecuador Meetup

Paddle in Añangu creek, a black water ecosystem

Itinerary

church towers in Quito, Ecuador

Day 1
Airport Pickup in Quito

Welcome to Ecuador! We will pick you up from the airport after 8am according to your arrival time. Our first hotel is in the center of the beautiful city of Quito and designed to be the perfect blend between old world architecture and modern style. This evening is yours to relax as we wait for everyone to arrive.
colorful buildings in Quito, Ecuador

Day 2
Quito Colonial Town

Our walking tour of Quito will lead us through a whirlwind of geography and astronomy, preserved ancient architecture, indigenous art, and neo-gothic cathedrals. We will visit the old town, Middle of the World Monument, La Compañia Church, and Intiñan Museum. We will stand at exactly 0° 0’ 0” on the line of the equator! The later afternoon is yours to wander the city center with your new travel mates before we meet back up for a proper welcome dinner at one of Quito's delicious local restaurants. Meals: breakfast, dinner
horses in Cotopaxi National Park

Day 3
Cotopaxi National Park

Start the day at Avenue of the Volcanoes! Hike through Cotopaxi National Park admiring the stunning “paramo”, or grassland landscape, with hummingbirds, wild horses, and loads of other wildlife while the Cotopaxi Volcano always lingers in the background. This afternoon, you’ve got options! Choose from one of three local activities (whatever you choose is included in the tour)…


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Horseback Riding

We’ll saddle up for a horse riding! We’ll learn the typical dress of the “chagras” (Ecuadorian cowboys) and even play a little dress up. Then we will ride out across the paramo to the slopes of the extinct volcano, Rumiñahui. A legendary chagra from the area will come with you and share his knowledge of the countryside and the life lived in these areas. Meals: breakfast, lunch

Cooking Class

The fun and all-inclusive cooking class is given by native women who will inspire and teach you their culinary secrets and techniques that have been passed down, generation to generation.  Travel through history while learning about the most representative crops in South America and how to use ancient cooking tools. Examples of some dishes you might make are “Empanadas de Viento” with “aji”, a hot chili sauce made all over Ecuador with many varieties depending on the area and culture. Enjoy the dishes with some traditional “canelazo” after learning how to make this old as time hot tea, made especially to warm up your soul in the coldest areas of the Sierra.

Ropes Course

The adventure is made possible with ladders, nets, swings, ropes, wobbly bridges, swinging logs, and other fun surprises. The course is about 20 meters above ground.  The entire course is located near the Cotopaxi Volcano standing out in the background at a hacienda near their gardens.

Meals: breakfast, lunch

CUICOCHA LAGOON

Day 4
INDIGENOUS VILLAGES & CUICOCHA LAGOON

Today, we'll visit several indigenous villages in the Northern area of the highlands and take a walk around the spectacular Cuicocha Lagoon within the Cotacachi-Cayapas Ecological Reserve and see first hand all of its bio-diversity. After this is one of the highlights of your Ecuador experience: a panchamanka ancestral culinary experience! Read more for all the details...


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Pachamanka ancestral culinary experience

“Pachamanka” is a word derived from Incan times. In the indigenous Quichua language it means “Pacha” for Earth and “Manka” for pot. The Pachamanka is a ceremony performed during special occasions such as the summer and winter solstices and equinox of the agricultural calendar.

The pot used during the ceremony is heated by volcanic stones and filled with food like potatoes, sweet potatoes, mellocos (similar to potato), beans, carrots, beets, plantains, and meat wrapped in achira leaves. The pot is then covered with a cloth and buried in the ground to cook. The mound where the pot is buried is adorned with flowers from the region, transforming into a beautiful Andean altar where everyone can give their thanks and appreciation.

You will be able to participate in the ceremony just like the ancient Incans once did. The foods are cooked perfectly in the pot due to the intense heat produced by the stones below ground. All the nutrients are preserved in this manner of cooking, and it is especially healthy as no condiments or additional fats are used.

This delicious dish is accompanied by chicha, a non-alcoholic version of corn beer made from different types of maize.  Overall, it is an amazing celebration and who cooks better than Mother Earth with friends gathered around?

OTAVALO MARKET

Day 5
OTAVALO MARKET & PAPALLACTA HOT SPRINGS

The Otavalo market is an ancient tradition and still is an important social and cultural event. Find music, handmade textiles, clothing, artisanal crafts, and other arts. Take some solo time to explore and shop knowing you're supporting the locals. Later we will soak in springs naturally heated by the nearby volcano with a view that where you could spot hummingbirds, wild horses, or even a bear! Meals: breakfast
kayak on playas trail in Ecuador

Day 6
Coca to the Añangu Community

This morning we'll hop on a quick flight to Coca to begin an incredible 4 day immersive cultural visit with the Kichwa Añangu community! Once we arrive, we will be welcomed with a glass of wayusa and shown to our rooms all with views of the Amazon Rainforest. This afternoon we will hike the Playas Trail to experience amazon wildlife by the river, one of the most biologically diverse places on Earth. For a little extra, you can choose to kayak watching a colorful sunset from the water. Meals: breakfast, boxed lunch, dinner
parrot clay lick in Ecuador

Day 7
Añangu Community

This morning, we jump on a motor boat to Yasuni Biosphere Reserve, the parrot clay lick. Birds of all colors flock here to feed on the mineral rich clay. We'll see 11 species of parrots and parakeets, including blue-headed, yellow-crowned parrots and even dusky-headed parakeets. The afternoon and evening are with the women of the community, who will teach us the Kichwa culture, crafts, and customs. We'll hike to see monkeys, squirrel monkeys, toucans, parrots and sloths and end the day with dinner on a catamaran prepared right there with the women of Kuri Muyu. Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner
women from the village Ecuador Tour

Day 8
Añangu Community

Enjoy the sunrise at breakfast and then visit the sustainable community projects to talk about the Kichwa worldview. After, we will walk into the Mama Kuna trail to see ceiba trees, strangler, and bamboo cane endemic from Yasuní. After a local lunch, paddle around “Añangu” creek, a black water ecosystem where you can spot monkeys jumping from tree to tree and sometimes even giant river otters. Dinner is a local experience: maito, grilled fish wrapped in a bijao leaf, and if you want, try the grilled worms. (Vegos, you won't be left out!) After dinner, we'll walk at night around the lodge to see different kind of insects, reptiles and even nocturnal mammals like the night monkeys.
guayusada ceremony in Ecuador SoFe Travel Tour

Day 9
Añangu Community to Coca to Quito

We'll join a kichwa family to share together the sacred wayusa (a traditional herbal tea) in a ceremony. This rite has been a way to pass their ancient knowledge to the new generations. There are traditional chants and the option to have dreams read with the wise old mamakuna of the community. After a boat ride for a last glimpse at the Amazon and a quick flight, we will be back in Quito for a farewell dinner and free time. Meals: breakfast, dinner
Angel Statue in Quito

Day 10
Farewell for now!

It's time to say goodbye and make plans for our next trip together! Share a ride to the airport with a new travel friend, we'll help you arrange it.

Accommodation

Our accommodation is hand-picked to give you the best combination of comfort, location, and style. These are photos from our collection of favorite hotels and resorts to give you a sense of the accommodation you can expect with us. 

Hotel Termas de Papallacta

Think volcano views and lush jungle surroundings. Soak in the hot springs right outside your door and stay warm and relaxed as the fog rolls in. 

hotel with hot springs ecuador
Napo Cultural Center

Located among and run by the Anagu Kichwa community, this eco lodge is located in the heart of Ecuador’s Amazon. There is a bar, restaurant, excellent food, and a jacuzzi. This place is some how both spiritual and luxurious all while supporting locals and being gentle on the environment.  

napa cultural center
  • Accommodation in twin rooms
  • Expert guide
  • 6 Breakfasts
  • 4 Lunches
  • 4 Dinners
  • Local transportation, including domestic flights
  • Airport pickup on day one
  • All entrance fees and activities in the itinerary unless specified as optional

Activities and experiences:
Quito walking tour
Middle of the world monument
La Compañia Church
Intiñan Museum 
Avenue of the Volcanoes
Cotopaxi National Park
Cotopaxi Volcano
Horeback riding/Cooking class/Ropes course
Cuicocha Lagoon
Cayapas ecological reserve
Panchamanka ancestral culinary experience
Otavalo market
Natural Hot Springs 
Kichwa Añangu community
Playas trail
Añangu creek
Yasuni biosphere reserve
Mama kuna trail
Four days with a naturalist on the Amazon

We will pick you up from the airport any time on day one after 8am. If fellow travelers arrive around the same time, we’ll bring you to our first hotel together. More details to follow once your spot is booked.

  • A deposit of $500 is required to hold your spot.
  • Final payment is due 60 days before departure.
  • Pay as much as often as you like until the due date.
  • If you cancel your spot earlier than 45 days before departure, you can apply your payment to any trip within the next year.
  • No refunds on deposits.
  • Airfares
  • Visa fees if applicable
  • Travel insurance (mandatory)
  • Airport drop off
  • Covid PCR test (currently mandatory to enter Ecuador)
  • The itinerary is subject to change due for any reason – weather, unexpected cancellations, impromptu local opportunities, or surprise additions.
  • Comprehensive travel insurance is mandatory or you may be refused to join the tour. See our guide for help choosing a plan.
  • All bookings are subject to our terms and conditions.

Most countries are able to visit Ecuador with a visa upon arrival. Please check the requirements for your country.

What our travelers say

Best chance to get to know people in the network!

“I joined the SoFe Network on Facebook 3 years ago but joined the membership because I wanted to interact with people without the weirdness of Facebook social boundaries. It absolutely worked, and I’ve made so many friends and been on quite a few zoom events. The events are amazing, the people are amazing, best chance to get to know people in the network!” Kirsten | Membership

One of the best trips I’ve ever been on.

“I had always wanted to go to Morocco but I was hesitant to go alone which normally I have no problem doing. I saw this trip advertised on the Solo Female Traveler Network Facebook page and the more I looked into it the more I wanted to go. So I did..and let me tell you that it was one of the best trips I’ve ever been on…seriously.” Jennifer H. | Morocco

So much more than a tour.

“I have been on three tours with these ladies, and I can not even explain how amazing my experiences have been. It’s so much more than just a tour. I have made life-long friends who understand my wanderlust, met local people who taught me the warmth and kindness of the places we’ve visited, and I have left feeling empowered to travel more.” Megan S. | Bali

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