On this Horseback Riding Tour you will explore the area around the Cotopaxi Volcano. Magical indigenous forests with rare flora and fauna, snow-covered mountains and historic haciendas are part of this amazing experience. Feel like a real chagra (Andean cowboy), riding through the paramo.
Number of days: 5
Interests: Horsebackriding, Nature & Wildlife
Total CO2 emission, in lb (per day for cruises): 92
Click on the icons to see details about each visited place.
Our ride begins in the Private Reserve of Hacienda Santa Rita at 3,300m. After a brief riding lesson, we ride off through native woods until we reach the páramo of Pasochoa.On the way,we can take in the magnificent scenery of the mountains and snow-capped peaks around us and spot local flora and fauna. Box lunch and transfer by vehicle to Hacienda El Porvenir. Dinner and overnight stay.
We head towards the slopes of the extinct volcano of Rumiñahui following exclusive paths, hearing local legends and tales.On the way we can see herds of wild bulls, Andean birds and wildlife, and feel the elation of the high Andean panoramas. We get close to the rocky peaks of Rumiñahui, from where 12 more volcanoes are visible on a clear day. We will also visit Chusigmachai, or the Owl Refuge, before riding back to the farm house. Dinner and overnight stay at Hacienda El Porvenir.
Cotopaxi National Park- Hacienda El Tambo
We set off from Hacienda El Porvenir, riding towards Hacienda El Tambo, on the eastern mountain range. The ride takes 6 to 7 hours and covers roughly 43km. On the way, we visit the Pucará del Salitre, an ancient Inca fortress, feeling constantly shielded by the colossal Cotopaxi. The ride takes us through a pleasant variety of landscapes, passing by mountain rivers and small lakes. When we finally reach the farm house of El Tambo, we will be rewarded by a traditional dinner and can warm up before a real fire.
We ride over the foothills of Quilindaña, an old volcano that has been extinct for millions of years. The ride crosses the plains and slopes of this beautiful peak of 4,878m.(15,999 ft),where there are still pristine woods of native trees, like the pantza or polylepis (paper tree). We get off our horses for a while and wander through a magical world of enchanted woods, full of moss, lichen and high-altitude bromeliads. After strolling in the woods and hearing some local legends, we ride back to the farm house at Hacienda El Tambo, where a delicious dinner awaits us.
Hacienda El Tambo – Hacienda El Porvenir
We ride out early in the morning, heading back to civilization. Following the course of the River Tambo towards the base of Cotopaxi, we take the high route used by the locals and ride towards Chirimachai. We cross the Curipugyo Canyon (“place of gold” in Quichua), where we can see clear evidence of past volcanic eruptions. On the way back to Hacienda El Porvenir, we once again cross Cotopaxi National Park, taking a spectacular, panoramic route. We reach Hacienda El Porvenir, where we transfer to our vehicle for the drive back to Quito.
Price per person: US$ 1180
(based on 2 people traveling)
- Accommodation (based on double occupancy)
- Meals (13 full meals, from lunch first day to lunch last day)
- Described activities
- Guides (English speaking guide)
- Riding gear (chaps, saddle bags, riding helmet, wool poncho and waterproof poncho)
- Entrance fee to Santa Rita Ecological Reserve and El Tambo Conservation Area
- Safety backup transport
- Transport from and to Quito