The Cotopaxi is an active stratovolcano situated in central-northwest Ecuador. It has an altitude of 5,897 m, making it the second highest volcano in the country and it is still active. It is located 50 km south of Quito and is part of the Andes mountain range.
As the geographer and explorer Alexander von Humboldt famously said, ‘Cotopaxi Volcano is the most beautiful of all the huge mountains of the Andes‘. Being a conical shape, that is covered by a white glacier that shines with the sun, contrasting with the blue of the sky it is hard to disagree with von Humboldt!
This itinerary allows the opportunity to do a 3-day hike in the center of the Ecuadorian Andes. Taking you through trails to discover the immense & beautiful landscapes, uncovering some of the most famous volcanoes in the country, such as Cotopaxi.
Leaving in the morning from Quito and driving to the starting point (3,000 m). You’ll enjoy a moderate uphill walk through casa de campo and by typical Andean houses.
The hike continues through the valley between Sicncholagua and Pasochoa Peaks, where you can admire some waterfalls and Andean Forest along the Pita River.
Then continuing on the road to Chilcapamba Lodge (3,487m). Overnight here at the lodge.
Starting early in the morning and then driving towards the east to Pita River Canyon for about 20 min, where the hike begins, trekking for 5 to 6 hrs.
The first section is a nice Andean Forest and then on the border of Pita River, where you can appreciate the ancient lava flows from the last eruptions of Cotopaxi.
You’ll arrive at Tambopaxi Lodge by late afternoon. Overnight here.
Our 4-5 hr hike starts in the morning. You’ll walk on the base of both mountains Cotopaxi and Rumiñahui.
You can observe the native flora of the highlands, and pass by Limpiopungo Lake where you’ll see some of the representative Andean fauna, especially birds. Return to Quito by late afternoon.