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Cotopaxi National Park

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Cotopaxi National Park: Our most recommended tours and activities

Cotopaxi National Park & Quilotoa Full-Day Tour

1. Cotopaxi National Park & Quilotoa Full-Day Tour

Depart by bus from through the Panamerican Highway admiring the diverse ecosystems of the route, as a clear sign of the majesty of the Andes. Continue to the Cotopaxi National Park, arriving at the foot of the impressive active volcano. Visit the Museum Park, the Limpiopungo Lagoon and and through an interesting hike will reach the forest of chuquirahuas to 4200 meters. (if the weather permits). See the Quilotoa Volcano. With a stunning turquoise lagoon in its crater, it's one of the most beautiful landscapes of Ecuador. Take a short hike to appreciate the magnificent view of the volcano (if weather conditions allow) and enjoy time for lunch at your own expense.

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Quito: 2 or 3-Day Tour to Baños with Cotopaxi & Quilotoa

2. Quito: 2 or 3-Day Tour to Baños with Cotopaxi & Quilotoa

Explore Baños, the adventure capital of Ecuador. Get to know stunning places such as Cotopaxi Volcano as well as the Quilotoa Lagoon - an unbelievable turquoise lake in the caldera of an active volcano. Once in Baños, enjoy a number of wonderful activities set against a beautiful backdrop of waterfalls and tropical greenery. This short tour makes for a great escape from Quito. Day 1 Get picked up from your hostel or hotel in Quito to begin the trip to Baños. Arrive at the Chuquiragua Lodge, and savor a delicious breakfast. Observe the stunning Cotopaxi Volcano, one of the country's most famous sights. Visit the Toachi River Canyon lookout point and the Shalala lookout point with some free time to enjoy the amazing landscape of Quilotoa Crater Lake. Depart for Baños and visit the famous "Swing at the End of the World" at La Casa del Árbol. Take in an amazing view of the gorgeous mountain landscapes. Enjoy a free evening to explore some of the local attractions. Feel free to visit the nearby thermal baths which gave Baños its name and go for a relaxing dip in these healing pools. Stay overnight in Baños.  Day 2 Spend the morning exploring Baños at your leisure. Then, get picked up at Juan Montalvo Park to begin the day's activities. Ride a cable car over the Pastaza River and experience 360-degree views of waterfalls, mountains, and beautiful jungle landscapes. Visit the stunning Devil's Cauldron (Pailón del Diablo) Waterfall. Return to Baños for free time. If you have chosen the 1-night option, prepare to return to Quito arriving by around 8:30 PM for drop off at your hotel/hostel. For the 2-night option, visit the San Martín Adventure Park for zip-lining, canopy walks, rock climbing, trekking and more. Full entry for all activities at the park is included for this option. Then enjoy a final free evening and overnight stay in Baños. Day 3 Have breakfast before heading out for the day. Spend the morning exploring Baños or taking part in one of the many exciting activities on offer. Options include city tours, quad bike rentals, canyoning, rafting and many more that you may purchase locally. Prepare to return to Quito arriving by around 8:30 PM for drop off at your hotel/hostel.

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From Quito: Cotopaxi National Park Full-Day Tour

3. From Quito: Cotopaxi National Park Full-Day Tour

Benefit from pick-up at your hotel in Quito in the morning, and then depart the city center and travel by air-conditioned vehicle towards Cotopaxi National Park. Enjoy stunning views of the snow-capped peaks of the Andes Mountains in the distance and the amazing flat lands surrounding the Cotopaxi Volcano. Upon arrival, visit the Interpretation Center to learn more about Ecuador's 2nd highest mountain peak and the Limpiopungo Lagoon. Hike through the surroundings of the Limpiopungo valley for approximately 3 hours, and climb from an altitude of about 3,890 meters above sea level to an elevation of about 4,500 meters. Take in the stunning vistas on clear days, and then enjoy lunch at a local restaurant, if option selected. Return to Quito and get dropped off at your hotel on arrival.

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Cotopaxi National Park: Private Tour from Quito

4. Cotopaxi National Park: Private Tour from Quito

Depart from Quito at approximately 08:00 by the "Pan-Americana Sur" way, admiring the beautiful Andean landscapes.  Visit the National Park with its interpretation center and learn about the indigenous animals. Stop at Lake “Limpiopungo” and also climb to the refuge of the highest active volcano "Cotopaxi" of 5,897 meters high.   Cotopaxi National Park is a protected area located in Ecuador Latacunga Canton in the province of Cotopaxi in Ecuador. Inside the park and in the territory of the province of Cotopaxi is the snow-capped Cotopaxi volcano. Its ecosystem is home to several arboreal species, especially pine, live species of cypress, pine, spruce and ash trees. Finally, rest and enjoy nature at a hotel refuge where you can taste a hot and delicious traditional lunch before returning to Quito.

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From Quito: 2-Day Cotopaxi and Quilotoa Trip

5. From Quito: 2-Day Cotopaxi and Quilotoa Trip

Depart Quito early in the morning and drive along the scenic Avenue of the Volcanoes, spotting various mountains including, el Corazon, Rumiñahui, Illinizas, Pasochoa, and Atacazo. Arrive at the national park surrounding the Cotopaxi volcano, which stands as the highest active volcano in the world at 5,897 meters. Start by hiking around the lake at the foot of the volcano. Then drive up the volcano to reach 4,500 meters. If weather permits and park regulations allow, climb to reach the refuge at 4,800 meters and from there continue up to the glaciers. Your time on the peak will also include a visit to the Interpretation Center to learn about the flora and the fauna of the park. Stay overnight in Cotopaxi. On day two, head to the Quilotoa volcano, stopping along the way in a traditional indigenous village. Visit with the locals in a typical indigenous house made of straw learning about their way of life and agricultural practices. Then make another stop in the town of Tigua, famous for its naive paintings. Continue on to reach Quilotoa. Choose to descend to the reach the shore of the lake located in the mountain crater or just walk around the crater. Then go on a mule ride around the mountain, taking in the incredible highland landscapes. Afterwards return to Quito.

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From Cuenca: 4-Day Ecuador Exploration Tour

6. From Cuenca: 4-Day Ecuador Exploration Tour

Day 1: After getting picked up from your hotel in Cuenca, travel to Alausi, where you will have a litlle city tour and also you will admire beautiful Andean landscapes and watch an Andean music performance along the way. Afterward, break for lunch before beginning the journey to Riobamba. Stop along the way to visit Ecuador's oldest church and the beautiful Colta Lagoon, then you will visit the highest peak of Ecuador " Chimborazo 6300 meters". Spend the night at a hotel in Riobamba. Day 2: After breakfast, head to the charming city of Baños to admire a spectacular waterfall. Afterward, hop on a cable car and ride towards a viewpoint where you can enjoy a ride on the "swing at the end of the world". Return to Baños after your swing ride and get a good night's sleep before tomorrow's activities. Day 3: Today, visit Pujili and do a spot of shopping at the town's indigenous market, where you'll find everything from fresh fruit and vegetables to clothing. Later, visit Tigua, where a small indigenous community lives. Immerse yourself in the daily life and culture of this community before heading to Quilotoa Lake, which is often referred to as the most beautiful place in Ecuador. Here, enjoy a stroll around the edges of the lake or even take an optional donkey ride. Spend the night at a hotel in Quilotoa. Day 4: Rise early to travel to the Cotopaxi National Park, where you can go for a walk around the Limpiopungo Lake. If the weather is clear, admire panoramic views of one of the world's most active volcanoes. Afterward, travel to Quito where you will say goodbye to your guide and spend the evening exploring the city at your leisure. 

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From Quito: Cotopaxi Hiking and Biking Tour

7. From Quito: Cotopaxi Hiking and Biking Tour

This is the best way to discover the stunning landscapes of the Cotopaxi National Park. You will be collected from Quito and taken to the national park, to discover the world's highest active volcano. Once there, there will be plenty of options, including around a one-hour cycling descent, and hiking. You will see lots of fascinating wildlife on the tour, including wild horses, foxes and sometimes even Andean condors. Don't miss this opportunity to discover one of the gems of the Andes on a convenient day tour, including both hiking and mountain biking - it's a fun and easy way to see a famous national park.

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From Quito: 4-Day Nature & Culture Tour

8. From Quito: 4-Day Nature & Culture Tour

Start your four-day Quito adventure with a visit to the Cotopaxi National Park where you can walk around Limpiopungo Lake and enjoy the scenery of one of the highest and most active volcanoes in Ecuador. The next day, explore the charming city of Baños to enjoy the famous Avenida de las Cascadas. Visit the Pailon del Diablo waterfall where you can try what’s known as the “swing at the end of the world.” Start the next day with a ride on an Ecuadorian train and enjoy the beautiful Andean landscape along the way. Travel south to Ingapirca, the most important archaeological complex in Ecuador, where you will learn about the Cañari and Incan cultures. Overnight in Cuenca, known as one of the most beautiful cities in Ecuador, which you can continue to explore the next day with a visit to the historic center, and Cajas National Park or Gualaceo and Chordeleg.

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Cotopaxi: Nature and Adventure Guided Trekking Tour

9. Cotopaxi: Nature and Adventure Guided Trekking Tour

You will be picked up from your hotel and driven to the Cotopaxi National Park. Take in the breathtaking views as you wind up through the roads to 4,500 meters above sea level to the start point.  Your hike will begin as you head towards the refuge José Rivas stopping at viewpoints to take in the stunning landscapes. You will then go to the Limpiopungo Lagoon, a stunning crystal-clear lake that reflects the scenery and sky above it. Along the way, you may catch a glimpse of wildlife like the Andean Fox, deer or cute rabbits. You can also see birds like the Cara Cara Curiquinge, the Andean Gulls and Coots, alongside many more fascinating species that your guide will point out to you. The mandatory guide costs an additional US$ 60.00 for the whole group so please bear this in mind.  There will be many photo opportunities along the way with the stunning surrounding forests, mountains, and ravines offering picturesque views. You can stop to enjoy some typical Ecuadorian food for lunch to refuel and will be returned back to your hotel at the end of the day. 

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Quito: Bike Tour Around the Cotopaxi Volcano with Lunch

10. Quito: Bike Tour Around the Cotopaxi Volcano with Lunch

You can enjoy convenient travel as you will be picked up from your accommodation in Quito and driven to Cotopaxi National Park, where you will meet your expert English-speaking guide. Here, you will receive your biking equipment and set off around one of the highest active volcanoes on earth, which at just over 19.000 feet, is one of the most stunning sights in Ecuador. You will cycle next to Cotopaxi’s base, on dirt roads surrounded by an otherworldly landscape dotted by rocks thrown by the volcano during its last major eruption. When you stop for lunch you can enjoy a picnic with views of some ancient Inca ruins, then set off exploring more of Cotopaxi National Park by bike. The ride is about 16 miles, and mostly on a flat easy terrain ideal for novice bikers. Afterwards, enjoy a comfortable ride back to your accommodation.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Cotopaxi National Park

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What people are saying about Cotopaxi National Park

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 149 reviews

Our Baños guide Angel was phenomenal. He was hilarious, extremely knowledgeable, flexible, and full of excellent recommendations. The experience itself was one of a kind. Every activity was more exhilarating than the last. If you only have a few days to take in this gorgeous place, this is the tour for you!

It was a great trip and our guide was phenomenal. He clearly has a personal, not just professional, passion for the nature and ecosystem surrounding Andean Ecuador. He brought this to the tour, which made it more special.

Mauldo (sp ?) was excellent. He picked mu up right on time and gave a lot of interesting information along the tour

Very nice place to visit. It's very cold, you can see nice view. I definitely recommend it.

Our guide was extremely good at given information on Cotopaxi.