This program offers guests the opportunity to gain an insight into real Ecuadorean life and culture as you take on the exciting and challenging mountain biking treks through varied landscapes including the Avenue of Volcanoes, the Andean Highlands and the gateway to the Amazon!
Our bilingual guides will show you some of the most beautiful places and exciting mountain bike treks of the country. Our daily stages are between 20 and 50 km long and vary from an easy to a hard level. You will enjoy this tour and be thrilled!
Welcome to Ecuador! After your arrival at the Mariscal Sucre International Airport and one of our drivers will pick you up and transfer you to the hotel. Afterwards you will be picked up for a visit to the Panecillo, an excellent viewpoint over the city and surrounding volcanoes. Then you can take part in an interesting bike tour through the historical center. During this tour we will see the best know landmarks of Quito, such as the Gothic Cathedral Basilica, Plaza de la Independencia, the Archbishops Palace, the Iglesia de la Compañía and the Iglesia de San Francisco.
We will finish the tour in a nice restaurant with spectacular views of the city.
After breakfast we get a briefing on the cultural and geographical area from our local staff who will accompany us throughout our journey of Ecuador. Together we will check our maps, grease our chains, check our brakes, reset our clocks and set off on our challenge! The journey will start north of Quito close to the official and famous equatorial line statue where the French explorer named the country in their letters the equatorial land. We will start the ride on the edge of the crater on the Geobotanic reserve of Pululahua. 35 km of ride inside of the crater where we can enjoy the biodiversity of this reach lands. We will continue our ride, passing along rainforests, cliffs, waterfalls and refreshment stops where guides will provide explanations about animals and plants unique to the area. After riding forabout three hours and slowly descending into lower grounds, we will arrive to Mindo, a pastoral town located in the cloud forest (subtropical zone), at 1,800m. Here we connect to treetop harnesses and begin our canopying adventure of 13 cables over the treetops and hiking trail with spectacular views of the rainforest and waterfalls. We’ll take a cable car across the valley and into the challenging single track towards the waterfall. After a refreshing dip, we’ll continue to brave the rapids and the day finishes with a visit to the butterfly farm which is also home for the night.
Option 1: Mindo (1,250 m’) – Nono – El Chaupi
After spending the night at the magical butterfly farm with sounds of rushing water from the Mindo River we will enjoy a hearty breakfast and listen to our briefing about todays 13 zip-line circuit above the trees of the Mindo-Nambillo protected forest. After a nice picnic we start our bike ride in the vicinity of the Cloud Forest to Nono, from where your guide will take you to the colonial guesthouse ‘Hosteria Papagayo’. After an exhausting day you can relax in in the hot tub and enjoy the rest of the estate.
Option 2: Mindo (1,250 m’) – Pichincha Volcano – Biking
After spending the night at the magical butterfly farm we will wake up to the sounds of the rushing river of Mindo. We’ll enjoy a good local style breakfast and there will be a briefing about the plans for the day. The drive starts on a dirt track that surrounds the region of Pichincha. Today we will be biking to Pichincha Volcano with beautiful views overlooking the valley and the tropical region. We will reach the refuge of this amazing volcanoe and then go down until the town of Lloa, from here your guide will take you to the colonial guesthouse ‘Hosteria Papagayo’. After an exhausting day you can relax in in the hot tub and enjoy the rest of the estate facilities.
As one of the highest active snow-caped volcanoes in the world, Cotopaxi’s (5,897m) symmetric cone rises up from a vast plain that is home to llamas, condors and herds of wild horses. Cotopaxi National Park tour is an exciting day that begins with spectacular views of the unique Andean landscape in the “Avenue of the Volcanoes”. Inside the national park we hike up to the refuge, which is situated at 4,810m on the Cotopaxi snowline.
Depending on conditions we will then hike up to 5,000m where it can be possible to see the glacier.
We will then have a short safety briefing before our descent on mountain bikes! There are two sections to the mountain biking, the first of which we recommend to experienced riders. The journey finishes at the beautiful lagoon at the base of Cotopaxi.
From there we go on with the bus to the Hosteria PapaGayo, where the staff is waiting with a delicious lunch and a slice of cake.
After breakfast, we will prepare the bikes and start to ride in the area of the Corazon and Illinizas volcano. We will travel through farms riding on dirt roads. Furthermore we will see locals working on their daily tasks like looking after the animals. If we are lucky we can observe the amazing Cotopaxi volcano.
Today we will leave PapaGayo biking southwestwards of the Avenue of Volcanoes. The ride will start off road where Simon bolivar and the general Sucre have leaded the revolution army into the region of Pichincha. We will continue on a single trek and cross the river of Pucara. After 20 km we will get to the pass over the south ridge of the Ilinizas volcano. From there we will continue on a fast downhill trekn into the village of Pastocalle where we will have our lunch. We will continue driving for a couple of hours and spend the night in Chuqchilan.
The drive to Quilotoa displays beautiful views of the Andean mountains passing the ancient canyon of Zumbahua and many indigenous towns and farmlands. Quilotoa is a spectacular volcanic crater lake surrounded by mountains and green forest. We will cross pine forests and pass the famous trees Polylepis spending time of mountain biking in the area around the lagoon which offers spectacular views of the beautiful mountain scenery and villages. Before lunch we will descent to visit the Shalala community in Quilotoa. In the afternoon we will be transfered to Hosteria PapaGayo where we will spend the night.
Having arrived at the Cayambe-Coca Ecological Reserve we will trek around for about 1-2 hours and strengthen ourselves with a nice lunch in a typical restaurant afterwards. Then we head by car to the hot springs of Papallacta where you can treat yourself with a relaxing bath in the hot waters or optional treatments like massages in the Spa before we return to Quito.
We will start our day with the ride to the Imbabura view point and visit the San Pablo Lagoon. Then we will make our way to Otavalo where we will talk about the history of the Craquito tribe. After a delicious lunch in a typical Ecuadorean restaurant we will visit the famous indigenous market. There you have the chance to buy some handicrafts before we return to Quito.
Transfer to Airport
Gulliver Expeditions is a local operator that organizes Ecuador Tours to travelers that like to experience Unlimited Adventures like climbing to the closest point on earth to the sun in the Chimborazo Volcano or travel along the deepest landscapes in the Amazon Rainforest to the stunning sceneries of the Galapagos Islands.