We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Itinerary Help - Quito 7 Days

GA
Level Contributor
24 posts
2 reviews
Save Topic
Itinerary Help - Quito 7 Days

We are working on mapping out our itinerary for a trip to Quito Dec. 27-Jan.4th. My husband and I are traveling with our 2 teenage daughters. His parents are joining us but will only go on some of our outings. We already have a driver lined up. We're trying to plan around what might be closed on NYE and New Year's Day (which is a Monday when some things would be closed anyway). I've got a general outline, but can't decide what to do when and I can't figure out what I can do along the way from one place to another.

We are staying in the historic center for the first 5 nights and then with relatives in Guayllabamba for our last two nights. We are trying to fill in our question marks with sights we want to see, but I can't decide which day is best and what to add along each route. Anyone want to make suggestions? Here are things we know want to do:

Papallacto

Mitad del Mundo

Mindo

What other things might we enjoy? We like to hike and see cool natural sites. We like to eat local foods and shop in local markets. Sometimes in large cities, we just enjoy walking aimlessly around taking in our surroundings; I know Quito may not be the place for that outside of certain areas, but I'd love advice about that as well.

Dec. 27: arrive late evening

Dec. 28: HOHO bus

Dec. 29: Teleferico and ??

Dec. 30: Otavalo & Parque de Condor (I'd love to hear pros and cons of a Saturday visit to the market)

Dec. 31: ??

Jan. 1: ??

Jan. 2:??

Jan. 3:??

Jan. 4: ?? Fly out late evening, so we have time a full day of activities

Thank you so much for any thoughts or suggestions any of you may have!

5 replies to this topic
Tucson, Arizona
Destination Expert
for Quito, Ecuador
Level Contributor
11,119 posts
98 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Itinerary Help - Quito 7 Days

The HOHO bus is a great intro to the city for the first day. I would hold off on the TeleFeriQo until you've had a bit more time to acclimate to the altitude.

Are you interested in a couple nights' stay outside of Quito? If so, consider Pululahua crater just outside of Quito, where there are a couple of small lodges where you can stay. Pululahua Hostal is where I stayed. The owner will pick you up wherever you are in Quito and transport you either to the crater's edge, where you can hike down into the crater to the hostal, or drive you all the way. There are some small farms in the crater, and he can arrange horse riding. The hiking is easy as it's mostly dirt roads.

Another interesting area to hike is the bioreserve of the extinct Pasachoa volcano, about an hour from Quito. There are several distinct biozones, from subtropical to páramo (Andean high elevation grasslands). Native bromeliads and orchids are fun to spot, and the occasional llama. There are loop trails of varying difficulty to choose from.

I always enjoyed the Saturday market in Otavalo, especially going up on a Friday and visiting the market early before the bus loads. The market spills out into all the side streets and you can find some interesting unique items (jewelry, art, decorative objects, locally made clothing). You can make a side trip to Cotacachi if anyone is interested in shopping for good value leather goods.

New York
Level Contributor
41 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Itinerary Help - Quito 7 Days

Dec. 27: arrive late evening

Dec. 28: HOHO bus

Dec. 29: Teleferico and La Ronda (after 6pm), here you will find local food and live music, theater, etc.

Dec. 30: Otavalo & Parque de Condor (I'd love to hear pros and cons of a Saturday visit to the market)

Dec. 31: Stay in the city and visit Amazonas avenue where every year there is a traditional "año viejo" contest where people exhibit human sized dolls representing events of what happened in the year about to end. It was traditionally to burn these dolls at midnight but it is forbidden now. Either way you might enjoy mixing with the locals on that day.

Jan. 1: The city will be empty and almost everything will be closed. You could visit La Carolina Park in the north of the city during the morning and if the botanical garden is open you can visit it as well, the garden is within the park.

Jan. 2: Go to mitad del mundo, templo del sol and pululahua crater which are in the same area.

Jan. 3: If you are in Guayllabamba by now, visit the zoo. All animals there have been rescued from traffickers and some of them will be returned to the wild.

Jan. 4: Eat local food in Guayllabamba, Fly out late evening, so we have time a full day of activities

GA
Level Contributor
24 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Itinerary Help - Quito 7 Days

Thank you both so much for the great suggestions! I do think the plans for the 31st and 1st make sense. I also had forgotten about the Pululahua Crater. My father in law had mentioned it. Now it's officially on our list. Thank you so much.

Level Contributor
187 posts
32 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Itinerary Help - Quito 7 Days

My husband and I went to Otavalo on an off day (Thursday I think??) and the market was not worth the two hour drive from Quito just for that. We did the waterfalls and some other sight seeing, so we enjoyed Otavalo and wished we had spent a few nights there to enjoy more hiking and sight seeing. If your daughters are like many teenage girls, they might love the shopping experience. I think Saturday would be a good choice for them.

A suggestion about the Teleferiquo: My husband and I saved it for our fourth day in Quito to make sure we were acclimated...and that was the one day that it was cloudy and rainy all day. It wasn't worth the trip at that point. So try to build a little flexibility into your schedule to make sure you can get in your highlights.

Crows Nest...
Level Contributor
3 posts
23 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Itinerary Help - Quito 7 Days

Hi.

We arrived in Quito yesterday from Australia. Today we did teleforiqo and continued to hike up to the Rocas Pinchinas (I'm almost entirely sure that's incorrectly spelt). On the hike we ran into a Dutch guy who also landed yesterday and also made it to the peak. We are a reasonably active couple in our mid to late twenties and the dutch guy would have been in his forties. We found it a very fatiguing experience but still enjoyed it, though it's a pretty difficult hike. It took us about 5 hours round trip to do just the hike (cable car and things took extra) and it was sadly pretty cloudy. I'd definitely want to do it on a sunnier day, but I wouldn't be so worried about acclimatising to the altitude, unless it hits you real bad when you get here or you aren't very fit.

All that to make my main point that at the end of all of that we were pretty stuffed so a low key dinner and an early night is all we had the energy for this evening. Enjoy your trip.

Reply to: Itinerary Help - Quito 7 Days
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted