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The Best Hikes in Ecuador

- By: Rebecca Braak

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Hiking gives you the opportunity to connect with yourself and with nature while exploring new places. Discover the best hikes in Ecuador to conned with Ecuador and its beautiful landscapes.  

The Ecuadorian hiking routes offer a wide variety of landscapes and activity intensity to fit every traveler’s needs.  If you love adventure, nature, outdoor activities, and wildlife this experience will surely exceed your expectations. Immerse in the culture and landscapes of this beautiful country. What are you waiting for?

Cotopaxi National Park

Cotopaxi, is one of the most popular volcanoes in Ecuador, not only for its undeniable beauty but for its height summit, standing at 19,393 feet

Parque Nacional Cotopaxi offers a wide variety of trail options for all types of touristsThere are hiking trails for those who are motivated enough to walk for up to two days, to be delighted by the beautiful views the volcano has to offer. For this one, travelers must have the assistance of a mountaineering guide

For others with less time available, you can walk around the beautiful Lake Limpiopungo. Here you’ll be able to enjoy nature at its best. At this place, you’ll be amazed by the trace of past volcanic eruptions, that consequently created the lake. Moreover, if you are lucky enough you might see an amazing Condor.

Many travelers enjoy staying at one of the traditional ranches, where you can go horseback riding and be marveled at the beauty of one of the most wonderful national parks in Ecuador. Certainly, this place is one of the best hikes in Ecuador!

Cotopaxi hiking route


There is no wonder why Chimborazo is on this list. Being the highest volcano in Ecuador and SouthAmerica, it is a must on your bucket list. The volcano is also known for being the closest point to the sun on Earth. So, if you want to reach the sky, the ascent of the Chimborazo is your opportunity to do so! This hike requires preparation, a good fitness level, and a certified guide but, it is definitely worth the effort. At the end of the climb, you’ll be surrounded by glacial ice and, an unrivaled view of the top of the world.

If you prefer a more relaxing option, you can do the Abraspungo Route. Here you’ll be able to see the animals such as llamas, alpacas, and vicuñas that graze in these lands accompanied by their local owners. 

Another option is the Reserva de la Producción de Fauna Chimborazo that has a lot of shorter trail options. From Riobamba, you can appreciate the views of Altar and Tungurahua volcanoes. Last but not least, spend some time at the Devil’s Nose. This is the most popular section of the train track. It passes through dense cloud forests and along rivers. If you want to witness the incredible railway engineering and breathtaking views this is the perfect option!

Chimborazo Trail

Quilotoa Loop

Certainly, this is one of Ecuador’s best hikes. There are a lot of ways to go about this hike, it can be trekked to, through, or around. The most popular trail is starting at Quilotoa and ends at Sigchos, this is considered an easier route. There are more routes at the Quilotoa, for instance, there is one that starts in Latacunga and goes to Sigchos, Isinliví, Chugchilán, Quilotoa, Zumbahua, and finishes returning to Latacunga. This route increases in difficulty. 

This hike usually takes up to five days and you can try to do it all or just a portion of the route. However, it is recommended to spend a few days in this location so you can explore the area, meet the locals, and visit the indigenous markets a must, in any visit to the Ecuadorian Andes. Overall, this route will give you a once-in-a-lifetime experience and you’ll leave with amazing selfies.

Quilotoa Loop Trail

Lake Cuicocha

If you are looking for an easy one-day hike, this is the one for you. The whole route lasts about four to five hours, making it perfect for a short hike. The beautiful crater is located near Otavalo and the indigenous market. Wich is full of handcrafted jewelry, clothes, art, and, much more. This trail is less known than the Quilotoa Loop, therefore you can experience a more peaceful hike while you walk around the crater.  

This place has a lot to offer. If you decide to spend a couple of days there you can experience the sun festival of Inti Raymi in June, the Peguche Waterfalls, and the vigorous vegetation. This trail is not one of the most famous but it sure is one of the best hikes in Ecuador.

Cuicocha hike

Condor Trek 

The Condor trek does not lack in fame. It is one of the most notorious Andes trails and has even been featured in National Geographic Adventure in the 2014 World Wild Adventure Bucket List.

The trail starts at Papallacta and heads to the Antisana Reserve, crossing three ecological reserves. The five-day trail reaches an altitude of 14, 763 feet at the highest peak offering one of the most amazing views.  On this trail, you’ll pass through cold and heavy weather. It offers amazing views and wildlife seeing, and if you are lucky you might even see a majestic condor.  

Ecuador Trek

Ingapirca and Inca Trail

Although the Inca presence in Ecuador is less known than in Peruvian territory, the Inca trail is one of the best trails in Ecuador and most certainly is worth the visit. The Ecuadorian Inca Trail’s highest altitude reaches an elevation of 13,800 feet. 

Despite many parts of the road being destroyed by Spanish conquistadors, plenty of sections of the path are well preserved and you can see the remains of the impressive Temple of the Sun. Therefore, you will not only be impressed by the hike, but by the culture and history behind it.

This wonderful route is full of history and the incredible landscape of the majestic Andes, mountains, and lagoons. 

Ingapirca Ecuador hike


Now you are familiar with the best hikes in Ecuador and all the wonders you can find in them. Dare yourself to explore the beautiful hikes, and enjoy the wonderful views and pure air in your lungs. This is your chance to connect with yourself and the Ecuadorian culture. Contact us if you are ready for the adventure!

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