Situated on the equator, Ecuador is the smallest country in the Andean Highlands. Despite its size, it is probably the world’s most bio-diverse country, crammed with an astounding variety of wildlife, birds and vegetation existing in contrasting climatic zones. For our Flightie Shannon, this was one of the greatest adventures of her life. From relaxing in hot springs, to staying with and learning from a local family, Shannon details the highlights of her trip with G Adventures:
I was lucky enough to be able to take an 8 day guided tour through Ecuador with G Adventures. My trip was a whirlwind of activities, sights and experiences.
As a 20 something female, a trip like this gave me the opportunity to experience a ton of sights and activities with the comfort of a knowledgeable guide and an organized action plan to get the most out of my trip.
Thermas De Papallacata was one of the highlights of my trip for sure; nestled in a valley on the descent from the Eastern slopes of the Ecuadorian Andes, it’s a place to clear your mind, body, and soul. We said good bye to Quito, Ecuador’s capitol, after a trip to the equator and tour of the old town and hit this treasure on the way to the Amazon jungle. Set amongst mountains heavy with lush green vegetation and clouds settled on top of the pools. This place has not a couple but dozens of hot mineral pools of varying temperatures, there is a pool with the right temp water for everyone.
From the hot springs we carried on to the Amazon to enjoy 2 days of jungle adventures with a local family. Delphine (our host) welcomed us into his home. During our stay in the jungle we were escorted through thick rainforest that opened up to amazing canyons and waterfalls. Along with our guides and the leader of our pack, Delphine, we climbed up rock walls and waterfalls that I never would have imagined myself climbing. The reward; the most amazing scenery I have ever been surrounded by.
We ended our time in the Amazon with an afternoon of white water rafting; floating down the rushing river practicing our rescue skills and gripping onto the boat for dear life for 3 hours of adrenalin pumping and screaming giggles. I may paddle like a Barbie but we made our way through places that I never dreamed that I would be negotiating. We left the river soaked, faces painted in Amazon clay that our guides adorned us with and smiles from ear to ear. What an adventure, I loved every minute of it!
The road from the Amazon led us across to Banos, a town full of activities to satisfy all travelers. They offer, bungee jumping, our hotel looked out to a beautiful waterfall on the edge of the little adventure city in the mountains.
G Adventures showed me more of Ecuador in 8 days than I ever could have hoped to see in 3 weeks on my own. I had a blast and would recommend this trip to anyone looking for fun and culture rolled into a great holiday.
Interested in learning more about Ecuador or G Adventures? Shannon McNeill is an International Travel Consultant at our Westbank store in British Columbia, and can be reached online or by calling 1-866-318-2218.