Explore the charming cobbled streets and architectural marvels of Quito’s old town. Take in spectacular views along the scenic mountain road en route to the ecolodge. Hear the many different timbres of tweeting tropical birds as you awake each morning. Hike through the cloud forest with a naturalist guide to learn more about this remarkably diverse ecosystem
Embracing its position as the highest capital city in the world, Quito offers the opportunity to have your feet on the ground and your head in the clouds – quite literally. Journey from the colonial city streets to the cloud forest jungle to discover the verdant slopes of the Andes, where more than 330 species of bird make their home and the bright flowers of orchids and bromeliads vie for your attention.
Breakfast Included: 3 Lunches Included: 2 Dinner Included: 1
Your trip starts today in Quito with an airport arrival transfer. Your local guide will welcome you this evening at your hotel. Afterwards, you are free to go out and enjoy a dinner (optional) in one of Quito's many fantastic eating spots. Quito sits 2850 metres above sea level, under the towering Volcan Pichincha. It is a beautiful city – arguably one of the most beautiful in South America. The city stretches along the valley and is surrounded by the Andes. Quito is not only the capital of Ecuador, but it also has one of the most impressive and well-preserved Old Town areas amongst all the South American cities.
Cloud Forest (Bellavista Lodge)
Today you are picked up from the hotel at approximately 6.30 am. Leaving Quito we descend a scenic mountain road with forested mountains and beautiful views. Reaching the turn to Bellavista, you climb to the top of the mountain, again with fabulous views, where Bellavista lodge is perched. Settle into your room, enjoy a special breakfast whilst admiring the hummingbirds. Then you are invited to join the first hike into the forest. After a tasty lunch, you can take a guided hike with a Bellavista naturalist, or explore on your own. A guided hike will acquaint you with the exuberant vegetation (orchids, bromeliads, ferns, trees, etc) of the cloud forest, its bird life, and the fascinating adaptations to life in this special environment. The evening is relaxed; we recommend you take time to admire the incredible variety of moths, many of which are unknown to science. Keep an eye out for night birds such as the common potoo.
After a refreshing night’s sleep, an early morning bird hike in the serene morning light is well worthwhile. At approximately 8 am, our special Bellavista breakfast is served. Afterwards, perhaps explore on your own, or go with a guide to a waterfall! Every hike reveals something new even for those of us who are fortunate enough to live in the forest every day! Lunch is served at 1 pm. Afterwards you can choose to take a short hike or just relax and enjoy observing the activity of the hummingbirds in flight. You are then driven back to Quito for your final night. Arrival in Quito is expected between 5 pm and 5.30 pm.
Your Independent Experience finishes after breakfast with a departure transfer to the airport. Alternatively, why not join another Independent Experience to the majestic Cotopaxi volcano on the Cotopaxi & Quilotoa Experience – PSCOX.