If I’m honest, I wasn’t expecting to be blown away by Ecuador and really didn’t know much about it at all prior to commencing the South American leg of my trip. As I write this, I realise what an underrated, exceptional country it is!
I spent the last week odd in Banos and Cuenca in Ecuador before heading across the border to Peru. The towns themselves didn’t really do much for me but I feel like the EPIC bus ride to Huaraz in Peru is worthy of a post on its own!
I wasn’t planning on going anywhere near the coast in Ecuador. That’s until I met a few travellers on the Quilotoa Loop that had just been there and told me it was whale season and it was an experience of a lifetime.
The Quilotoa Loop is a 3 day trek in Ecuador that will take you through some beautiful countryside, eventually depositing you at the crater lake of the Quilotoa Volcano. Here’s a photo blog of my recent trek.
I was a little caught off guard about this as we don’t need visa’s for virtually all of the East and most of South America. I presumed Bolivia would be the same but I was wrong. There’s a lot of bad information out there about this visa – I hope this post will clear it up.
Mount Fuya Fuya is a volcano located just outside Otavalo and is a must see if you’re in the region. Climbing up it to take in the incredible view is an incredible thing to do but be warned – the climb isn’t easy! Here’s a post on how we did it and what you need to know.
Cuicocha is a 3km wide caldera and crater lake at the foot of the Cotacachi Volcano. If you’re in Otavalo in Ecuador, the hike around the crater lake is a must do, but the info out there isn’t so fresh. With a bit of luck, this post will help someone out.
Colombia is one of the first countries I’ve come across where everyone has very unique itineraries. I was expecting many people to be following the well trodden Gringo trail north or south around South America, but it turns out this doesn’t really apply to Colombia.
My last stop in Colombia before an epic 17 hour bus trip to the Ecuador border was Salento – the coffee region of Colombia. The area is situated high up in the mountains and the cool temperatures are perfect for growing coffee. The mountainous landscape makes it a great place to hike too.