Mountain Planet
Gastro Hike to the Avenue of Volcanoes
Cotopaxi National Park is one of the most impressive national parks in Ecuador, and where the famed Cotopaxi Volcano rests. It deserves more than just a quick pit stop and besides, there are plenty of things to do. Long leisure walks do wonders for the appetite, and traditional Ecuadorian meals are as much a highlight along the way as the landscapes and history.

Brief info

Climbing tecnique:
Length: 14 km
Altitude gain: 750 m
Best Time
Fitness level:
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You can handle approximately 4 hours of hiking with various types of terrain
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Duration: 12 hours
The activity does not require any mountaineering technique and training
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Duration of the trek might vary depending on guests' speed.
1. Easy
Light physical activity, usually walking or hiking, that is good for most fitness levels. Also suitable for children and elderly people. Perfect for whose who have never been to the mountains and who want to try it out.

2. Moderate
Activity involves daily walking for 3-5 hours a day, usually multi-day treks or long 1-day hikes that require a high level of physical activity. Suitable for people with an average level of physical fitness.

3. Challenging
Activity involves daily walking for 3-5 hours a day at various types of terrain (rough trails, partially exposed areas with danger of falling, gravel plains, pathless steep terrain) or high-altitude treks above 2000 meters. Requires an average to above average fitness level.

4. Strenuous
Activity involves walking up to 6-7 hours a day in fairly difficult terrain (steep rocky slopes, snow covered glaciers or firn fields with danger of slipping) or high-altitude treks above 3000 meters. Requires an above average fitness level and high level of stamina.

5. Extreme
Activity involves walking up to 6-10 hours a day with difficult terrain and conditions (tricky rocky slopes or snow covered glaciers with increased danger of slipping), strenuous high-altitude treks at 4000-5600 meters. Requires very high level of physical fitness and stamina, as well as good practical experience of multi-day trekking on high altitudes.
HIKING/ TREKKING ACTIVITY LEVELS
What intensity you should expect from this activity and what fitness level is required for this activity
0. No requirements/ minimal requirements
Easy hiking/ trekking with non-technical elements. No certain knowledge or experience is required for this activity.

1. Beginner
Basic navigation skills are required if hiking/ trekking without a guide. Previous hiking/ trekking experience is not required, but desirable. No danger of falling with appropriate behaviour.

2. Intermediate
Average navigation skills are required if hiking/ trekking without a guide. Basic alpine experience is needed.

3. Advanced
Path not necessarily available. Sometimes need to use hands to keep going. Terrain assessment, good navigation skills and good alpine experience is required.

4. Professional
Mostly without a path and unmarked, might involve some climbing sections. Excellent navigation skills are required even if trekking with a guide. Proven alpine experience, mountaineering skills and familiarity with alpine equipment are required.
HIKING/ TREKKING: TECHNICAL DIFFICULTY LEVELS
Some activities might envolve technical elements for which certain practical experience or training is needed.

Itinerary

Your Guide

Edgar Parra
Our guide Edgar is an Ecuador native, with more 20 years of experience in mountain climbing and leading groups professionally in Ecuador and around the world: in Colombian, Bolivian, Peruvian, Chile and Argentinean Andes, in Europe the the Italian, French, Swiss, German and Austrian Alps, the last years in Russia the Mount Elbrus and the Mount Kazbek in Georgia. He is passionate mountain climber, traveller, photographer, he spends most of his free time and vacations "discovering" new mountains, new climbing routes, new destinations, and new cultures. He is also certified IFMGA guide, so you can be sure that you're in best hands possible!

Important details

Meals
At Tambopaxi Lodge we will have a typical welcome drink of the highlands called "Canelazo" which is a beverage made out of passion fruit juice, lemon, lots of cinnamon, and added with sugar cane alcohol, really tasty and keeps you warm in the highlands, this drink will be accompany with an "empanada de viento" which is like a local cheese pie, and it usually served with aji (local spicy sauce).

Once we finished our first activity we will head to a little local restaurant, where we will get our lunch, which will be a "giant" fresh river trout, served with local products like, quinoa, onions, faba beans and in order to digest our delicious lunch, we will get a local wine made out of local blueberries.

At the very end of the day we will continue driving to local restaurant to taste the delicassen of the highlanders, the well-known, "grilled guinea pig" (Cuy), this dish they locals will eat only in special festivities and celebrations and it will be accompany with a glass of "Chicha" (beverage made out of corn and fermented, it tastes like a beer).
How hard it is
The trip lasts the whole day, but it includes many lunch and snacks stops. You should be physically fit enough to hike for 3-4 hours. Both children and old people can handle this tour. Your legs might be hurting the next day, but you will have no regrets.
Children 12 years old and above can attend, but should go with their parents.
Sportswear is a must (trekking shoes and comfortable clothes).

We also recommend you to stay at least a 2 or 3 days in Quito (9,186ft/2.800m) before doing this program in order to get used to the altitude and enjoy fully the new experience.
Transfers
Your guide will pick you up in the morning from your hotel in Quito or Plaza Foch and we will head to the first point on our route - spectacular "Avenue of the Volcanoes". After the hike the guide will drop you off at your place.
Equipment
You should bring
  • Comfortable shoes (trekking shoes prefered)
  • Comfortable clothes, that covers your elbows and knees
  • Warm clothes
  • Bottle of water (1L+)
  • Camera
  • Sunglasses
  • Raincoat (just in case of rain)

Options to go

Don't let Coronavirus (COVID-19) impact your mountain trip!

We at Mountain Planet prioritize safety and not only in the mountains. Thing are changing every day and there is so much that is still unknown. We want you to keep on planning your next mountain trip and not worry about cancellations.
We guarantee 100% refund if your plans have changed due to Coronavirus precaution measures (borders closed, flights cancelled, visa problems, etc).

COVID-19 Cancellation Policy
Group Tour — Meet New Friends
If you want to save up some money, but still taste local delicacies and hike in Cotopaxi National Park, Bring your friends and save up!
Price for 1 person - $315 per person
Price for 2 people - $205 per person
Price for 3 people - $165 per person
Price for 4-8 people - $140 per person
From $140 per person
You are just sending a request, no payment is needed at this point. Our Expert will get in touch with you to answer all your questions and help you book the best option for you.
What's included
Meals
  • Snacks (Canelazo and Empanada de viento)
  • Lunch (river trout with local delicacies)
  • Dinner (traditional dinner with local dishes and drinks)
Mountain crew
  • Professional Mountain Guide IFMGA (International Federation of Mountain Guide)
  • Superior service
Transfers
  • Private transportation and transfer
Entry fees
  • National Park fees and permits registration
What's not included
Personal gear equipment
Personal gear
Insurance
Mountaineering insurance
Tips
Although not mandatory, we recomend to thank your mountain crew and leave tips for them
Good to know
What clothes and gear do I need?
You need comfortable shoes (trekking shoes preferred), comfortable clothes, that covers your elbows and knees, warm jumper and a raincoat (just in case of rain). No special climbing gear is required.
Should I get any training?
Usually it's enough to ged cardio twice per week, but the best way to prepare is to hike and hill-walk in the weeks leading up to your departure. You should be comfortable walking for four to eight hours a day. If you want a training plan - drop us an email or a line in What's App.
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