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Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel

 

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Legacy of the Incas
Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel

Peru:
Machu Picchu - Lake Titicaca

(11 days/10 nights)

 

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Sacred Sites of the Incas
Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel

Peru:
Machu Picchu - Lake Titicaca
(12 days/11 nights)

 

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Empire of the Sun
Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel

Peru:
Machu Picchu - Lake Titicaca
(14 days/13 nights)

 

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Ancient Civilizations of Peru
Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel

Peru:
Colca Canyon - Machu Picchu
Lake Titicaca

(16 days/15 nights)

 

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Archaeological & Ecological
Treasures

Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel

Peru & Ecuador:
Galapagos - Machu Picchu
Lake Titicaca (or Amazon)
(18 days/17 nights)

 

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Grand Tour of the Inca Empire
Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel

Peru:
Colca Canyon - Amazon
Machu Picchu- Lake Titicaca

(22 days/21 nights)

 

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Ancient & Colonial Capitals
Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel


Peru:
Machu Picchu
(10 days/9 nights)

 

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Inca Trail to Machu Picchu
Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel

Peru:
Machu Picchu

(13 days/12 nights)

 

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Machu Picchu & Galapagos
Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel


Peru & Ecuador:
Machu Picchu - Galapagos
(15 days/14 nights)

 

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Galapagos & Machu Picchus
Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel


Ecuador & Peru:
Galapagos - Machu Picchu
(18 days/17 nights)

 

Luxury Galapagos Cruises

 

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Enchanted Isles of the Galapagos
Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel


Ecuador:
Galapagos
(11 days/10 nights)

 

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Galapagos & the Kingdom of Quito
Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel

Ecuador:
Galapagos - Andes

(16 days/15 nights)

 

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Galapagos & the Amazon
Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel

Ecuador:
Galapagos - Amazon
(16 days/15 nights)

 

Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel

 

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Historic Haciendas of the Andes
Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel

Ecuador:
Cotopaxi - Antisana - Otavalo
(7 days/6 nights)

 

© 2013 Inka's Empire Corporation.
All rights reserved.

luxury Peru tours travel

luxury Ecuador tours travel

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Cotopaxi Volcano - Papallacta Hot Springs - Antisana Volcano - Otavalo Valley

Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Courtyard of the Hacienda Zuleta, Ecuador.
Photo: Hacienda Zuleta
. Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Turning back the pages of time in Ecuador's historic haciendas...

-- Kimberly Fay, LuxuryLink.com

 

Land price (7 days/6 nights)

Imperial US$ 5,305 per person

The land price includes escorted transfers, private excursions with a professional guide and driver, your choice of activities at the Hacienda Zuleta, entrance fees, selected category of accommodations, gourmet cuisine (see details), all transportation, and travel insurance for guests through the age of 59 years (over that age, there is a supplementary fee). Horse riding at the Hacienda San Agustín de Callo is available at additional cost. All prices are per person based on two people sharing a guest room. For a detailed description of our services, see Opulent Itineraries.

Galapagos Cruisesluxury Ecuador tours travelWhat You Could Add in Ecuador

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Frederic Edwin Church, Cotopaxi, 1855, oil on canvas, 28 x 42 inches.
Photo: Smithsonian American Art Museum
. Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Upon arrival in Quito, you will be escorted to the two-century-old Hacienda La Carriona, whose stone courtyard and garden hint of the exuberant Spanish colonial lifestyle. During a five-day overland excursion along the "Avenue of the Volcanoes", from Cotopaxi, the highest active volcano on earth, to Antisana, you will admire the magnificent landscape that inspired Frederic Edwin Church's epic paintings of the Andes.

Soak in the hot springs of Papallacta, visit authentic workshops in artisans' pueblos, "barter with the natives" in the mystical Otavalo Valley and recapture the spirit of old Spanish days while staying in two other historic haciendas: Zuleta, established in 1691, and San Agustín de Callo, the 15th century Inca palace from which Atahualpa ruled the Kingdom of Quito, now called Ecuador. As an Inka's client you will sleep in one of the Inca rooms. Who knows -- maybe even Atahualpa's!

 

What Luxury Link has to say about Historic Haciendas of the Andes.

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Inca Tambo Suite of the Hacienda San Agustín de Callo, Ecuador.
Photo: Hacienda San Agustín de Callo
. Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Highlights

Hacienda La Carriona

Day 1: Quito, Ecuador - Hacienda La Carriona. Transfer to the Hacienda La Carriona, a monument to Ecuador's colonial history. Dinner and overnight in the Hacienda La Carriona -- Suite.

Hacienda San Agustín de Callo

Day 2: Hacienda La Carriona - Quilotoa Crater Lake - Tigua - Hacienda San Agustín de Callo. Departure south to the extinct Quilotoa Volcano. If open today, visit a local market on the way. Look down into the Quilotoa Crater Lake and try to imagine its unfathomable depth. If you wish, hike down to the lake and ride back up on a mule. In this region, indigenous populations maintain crops at an elevation of over 4,000 m. (13,120 ft.). Others, the artists of Tigua, are the creators of Ecuador's most famous naïve paintings. Andean lunch made of local, organic ingredients at Posada de Tigua before returning on the Avenue of the Volcanoes to the Hacienda San Agustín de Callo, a 15th century Inca palace and 16th century colonial monastery for a walk on its historic grounds. Dinner and overnight in the Hacienda San Agustin de Callo -- Mulalo Suite, in the Inca palace.

Papallacta Hot Springs

Day 3: Hacienda San Agustín de Callo - Cotopaxi National Park - Antisana Ecological Reserve - Papallacta Hot Springs. Morning departure to Cotopaxi, the highest active volcano on earth. Surrounding it, you will find the moorlands of the National Park. Exquisite landscapes are revealed as you hike the trails. Continue north along the Avenue of the Volcanoes toward the majestic Antisana Volcano. We view the panorama from a private reserve at cloud-forest level that is crowned by La Mica Lake, which teems with bird life. After a box lunch, hike with the snows of Antisana as a pristine backdrop. Then, drive to the Termas de Papallacta to enjoy the hot springs and natural surroundings. Dinner and overnight in the Termas de Papallacta Spa & Resort -- Double Room.

Hacienda Zuleta

Day 4: Papallacta Hot Springs - Cayambe - Hacienda Zuleta. Relax in the hot springs this morning and walk on marked paths, where nature lovers can appreciate the unique endemic species of flora and fauna. Around midday, departure north toward the Awakening Valley, home of the Otavalo Indians. In Cayambe, see how the pueblo's traditional biscuits and cheese are made, then visit the local "Middle of the World" Monument, marking the equator, and Rosen Pavillon, one of its first rose plantations. In the afternoon, drive along San Pablo Lake to Hacienda Pinsaquí. Lunch at Pinsaquí. Continue to the Hacienda Zuleta. Dinner and overnight in the Hacienda Zuleta -- Junior Suite.

Day 5: Hacienda Zuleta. Tours of the entire farm, on foot or on horse, are a typical part of every guest's stay. Select your favorite hacienda activities, any of which are included with your visit. Of special interest to many guests are the archaeological sites, working farm, hand-embroidery workshop, condor rehabilitation project, trout farm, cheese factory and stables. The hacienda is as famous for its horses and riding program as it is for its history and hospitality. Lunch at the hacienda. Dinner and overnight in the Hacienda Zuleta -- Junior Suite.

Quito

Day 6: Hacienda Zuleta - Otavalo Indian Market - Hacienda Cusín - Quito. At the foot of the Imbabura Volcano, lies the valley of Otavalo. Visit the ruins of the Incan Sun Temple at Caranqui, then choose between two options. For those more interested in native cultures, visit the village of Peguche, where musical instruments and woolen tapestries are made, the nearby sacred waterfall and other artisans' pueblos. For those more interested in nature, drive up to Cuicocha Lake and hike around this flooded volcanic crater. Time to explore the Otavalo Indian market, which dates back to pre-Inca times. Lunch at the Hacienda Cusín. Returning to Quito under the shadow of the Cayambe Volcano, arrive at the Casa Gangotena. Dine at Zazu. Overnight in the Casa Gangotena -- Plaza View Room.

Your next destination

Day 7: Quito - Your next destination. Continue on a cruise of the Galapagos Islands or an expedition to Ecuador's Amazon Rainforest.

 

Details

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Entrance to the Hacienda La Carriona, Ecuador.
Photo: Hacienda La Carriona
. Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Its stone courtyard and garden hint of the exuberant Spanish Colonial lifestyle...

-- Kimberly Fay, LuxuryLink.com

 

Day 1: Quito, Ecuador - Hacienda La Carriona

Transfer to the Hacienda La Carriona, located in the beautiful Valley of Los Chillos, a brief drive south from Quito. Constructed more than two centuries ago, "La Carriona" stands as a monument to Ecuador's colonial history. Its stone courtyard and garden hint of the exuberant Spanish Colonial lifestyle, while its name reminds us that it once belonged to the renowned Carrión family. La Carriona's thick adobe walls have witnessed significant events in Ecuador's  history. In the mid-1800s, the house belonged to the distinguished family, Fernández Salvador. In 1830, the patriarch of this family, Don José Fernández Salvador, was appointed president of the first Constitutional Assembly, which laid the foundation for both the Ecuadorian constitution and the nation. Today, the hacienda accommodates guests amidst tranquil surroundings. Dinner and overnight in the Hacienda La Carriona -- Suite.

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Quilotoa Crater Lake, Ecuador.
Photo: Nathou & Nono
. Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Day 2: Hacienda La Carriona - Quilotoa Crater Lake - Tigua - Hacienda San Agustín de Callo

Breakfast. Early morning departure south in private car with your guide and driver to the extinct Quilotoa Volcano, in a remote area of the high Andes on the western side of the Cotopaxi province. If open today, visit a local market on the way. After a drive up a dirt road and a hike to the rim, we'll look down into the dark green Quilotoa Crater Lake and try to imagine its unfathomable depth. At this majestic site, at the level of the clouds, we'll contemplate an extraordinary and rarely-seen landscape, not only into the volcano but out to the volcanoes surrounding Quilotoa. If you wish, hike down to the lake and ride back up on a mule.

In this region, indigenous populations maintain crops at an elevation of over 4,000 m. (13,120 ft.). Others, the artists of Tigua, whom we'll visit, are the creators of Ecuador's most famous naïve paintings.

"The Native American artists of Tigua, Ecuador have a short artistic history, but a very deep and rich cultural history. They are direct descendents of the Incan and pre-Incan populations who've inhabited this high Andean region for centuries...

The subject matter of these paintings usually reflects the immediately-surrounding Andean landscape and the traditional and ritualistic lifestyle of the native population. These scenes are rendered in a charming naif, folk style using bright, colorful enamel paints..."

-- Gordon Polatnick

Andean lunch made of local, organic ingredients at Posada de Tigua before returning returning on the Avenue of the Volcanoes to Salcedo and the Hacienda San Agustín de Callo, a 15th century Inca palace and 16th century colonial monastery. The view of Cotopaxi will make you feel you've entered one of Frederic Edwin Church's paintings. Indeed, the hancienda is depicted in the artist's Cotopoxi, of 1855.

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Courtyard of the Hacienda San Agustín de Callo, Ecuador.
Photo: Hacienda San Agustín de Callo
. Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Sleep in an Inca palace!

 

Continue to the ancient Hacienda San Agustín de Callo for a walk on its historic grounds. Around 1440 AD, the Inca emperor Tupac Yupanqui commanded the construction of a palace, and later his son, Huayna Capac, concluded the work. In turn, his son Atahualpa, the last of the Inca emperors and the king of Quito, occupied the palace on his travels to Quito and Cajamarca, before he was captured by the Spanish conquerors and executed in 1533.

The hacienda was written about by the Spanish chronicler Cieza de Leon in 1553, and is one of only two major Inca sites in Ecuador (the other is Ingapirca, near Cuenca). To this day, the remaining rooms prevail as a magnificent example of the unique style of Inca construction. The site is currently being investigated by Dr. David Brown of the University of Texas, with funding by the National Geographic Society. Previously unknown portions of Inca walls and foundations have been discovered throughout the restoration process of the house.

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Las Gordas Room of the Hacienda San Agustín de Callo, Ecuador.
Photo: Hacienda San Agustín de Callo
. Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

In 1590, the King of Spain granted large extensions of land to the religious orders in the different regions of Ecuador, with the purpose of consolidating the conquest and catholicizing the Indians. The Augustinian Order established their monastery in the region of Mulalo at this site, and with time constructed the colonial part of the house, blending the Spanish architectural style with the older Inca building.

In the 18th century, there was significant debate in the scientific community as to whether the circumference of the earth was greater around the equator or around the poles. To answer that question, Louis XV, the King of France, and the French Academy of Sciences sent the French Geodesic Mission to Ecuador (1736-44) for the purpose of measuring the roundness of the planet and the length of a degree of longitude at the equator. San Agustín de Callo housed the expedition's scientists, who witnessed two eruptions of Cotopaxi, in 1743 and 1744. In 1921, the hacienda was purchased by General Leonidas Plaza Gutierrez, president of Ecuador in 1901 and in 1912. The hacienda remains in the family and is currently owned by the general's granddaughter Mignon Plaza. Dinner and overnight in the Hacienda San Agustin de Callo.

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Cotopaxi Volcano, Ecuador.
Photo: Ecuador 365.
Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Day 3: Hacienda San Agustín de Callo - Cotopaxi National Park - Antisana Ecological Reserve - Papallacta Hot Springs

Breakfast. Morning departure to Cotopaxi. The white-coned summit of the perfectly symmetrical volcano takes pride of place along the Avenue of the Volcanoes. The glaciated summit is 5,907 meters, or 19,400 feet, above sea level, making it the highest active volcano on earth. Surrounding the "King of the Andes", you will find the moorlands of the National Park, a vast wilderness of sweeping plains. Its 85,000 acres protect Andean condors, llamas, spectacled bears and many other species of highland fauna and flora. Exquisite landscapes are revealed as you hike the trails.

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Antisana Volcano, as seen from the Papallacta Hot Springs, Ecuador.
Photo: Termas de Papallacta.
Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Continue north on the Avenue of the Volcanoes to the village of Píntag, where the eastern range of the Andes rises toward the majestic Antisana Volcano. We view the panorama from a private reserve that starts at cloud-forest level, where it is dominated by bamboos and bromeliads, and extends past the amazing lava flows of the volcano. The reserve's plateau is crowned by La Mica Lake, which teems with bird life -- caracaras, lapwings, Andean condors and hummingbirds. After a box lunch, hike with the snows of Antisana as a pristine backdrop. Then, drive to the Termas de Papallacta, on the eastern foothills of the Andes, to enjoy the hot springs and natural surroundings. Dinner and overnight in the Termas de Papallacta Spa & Resort.

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Thermal pool, Termas de Papallacta Spa & Resort, Papallacta, Ecuador.
Photo:Termas de Papallacta Spa & Resort
. Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Day 4: Papallacta Hot Springs - Cayambe - Hacienda Zuleta

Breakfast. Relax in the hot springs this morning and walk on marked paths, where nature lovers can appreciate the unique endemic species of flora and fauna. Around midday, departure north toward the Awakening Valley, home of the Otavalo Indians. In Cayambe, see how the pueblo's traditional biscuits and cheese are made, then visit the local "Middle of the World" Monument, marking the equator, and Rosen Pavillon, one of its first rose plantations. The owner, María Eugenia Espinosa, will take you on a tour of this romantic place, which still maintains the tradition of women cultivating the roses by hand. Eighteen varieties are grown in six greenhouses, with each worker caring for and harvesting her own fifty beds. Six to eight-thousand stems a day are cut, most going to the United States.

 

 

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Hacienda Pinsaquí, Otavalo, Ecuador.
Photo: Hotel Pinsaquí.
Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

In the afternoon, drive along San Pablo Lake to Hacienda Pinsaquí. Constructed in 1790, the hacienda was originally a colonial textile enterprise, employing over one thousand weavers and spinners. To this day, it retains the character and authenticity of its earlier incarnation. Over the centuries Pinsaquí has hosted numerous illustrious guests. Most famous of all is General Simón Bolívar, the revered liberator of Ecuador, who often spent the night at the hacienda on his trips to and from Bogotá, Colombia. Lunch at Pinsaquí.

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Imbabura Volcano and San Pablo Lake, Otavalo Valley, Ecuador.
Photo: Mylene d'Auriol Stoessel.
Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Continue to the Hacienda Zuleta. Recently, Zuleta was opened to a limited number of guests so that the public could enjoy the many wonders it holds. To visit the hacienda is to experience four centuries of history steeped in Pre-Colombian, Spanish and Ecuadorian tradition. The original inhabitants of the Zuleta region were the peace-loving Caranquis, who have left a pyramid on the hacienda grounds. They were an agrarian-based culture and flourished in this area rich in volcanic soils from about 800 AD until the arrival of the war-faring Incas in the late 1470s. Although the Caranquis fought stoically against the Inca for forty years, they were eventually conquered and forced into Inca servitude. Yet Inca rule was short-lived. By 1533, the last Inca king, Atahualpa, had been captured and assassinated by the Spanish conquistador, Francisco Pizarro, leaving the Inca empire in collapse and a free-for-all for the land-hungry vassals of the Spanish Crown. The execution of Atahualpa by Pizarro marked the end of Inca domination in the Zuleta region, and the beginning of Spanish rule.

 

 

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Zuleteño horses and equestrians at the Hacienda Zuleta, Ecuador.
Photo: Hacienda Zuleta.
Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

In the late 16th century, King Carlos is believed to have bequeathed the Zuleta region to the Jesuits, who implemented their Spanish methods of farming and of cattle and sheep production. In the following years an "obraje" (small wool mill) was established. By 1691, the Hacienda house, granary and chapel were completed and the farm was in full operation. However, in 1713, under the direction of King Charles III, the property was confiscated and transferred to Canon Gabriel Zuleta, thus making Zuleta his seventeenth hacienda. From that day forth, the farm became known as Cochicaranqui de Zuleta. Upon the Canon's death, the farm passed to the Posse family, who were inspired to bring the hacienda back to its previous 17th century grandeur. Yet it wasn't until the farm was sold to Jose Maria Lasso in 1898 and passed through two more generations to Galo Plaza Lasso, the ex-President of Ecuador, bullfighter and diplomat, that Zuleta recaptured its original prosperity. Dinner and overnight in the Hacienda Zuleta.

 

 

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Rolling hills of the Hacienda Zuleta, Ecuador.
Photo: Hacienda Zuleta
. Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Day 5: Hacienda Zuleta

Breakfast. Tours of the entire farm, on foot or on horse, are a typical part of every guest's stay. You are usually privately escorted by a Plaza family member, another gesture of Zuleta's renowned hospitality. Select your favorite hacienda activities, any of which are included with your visit. Of special interest to many guests are the archaeological sites, working farm, hand-embroidery workshop, condor rehabilitation project, trout farm, cheese factory and stables. The hacienda is as famous for its horses and riding program as it is for its history and hospitality. Riding has been a Plaza family tradition for over one hundred years, and today Zuleta reflects this equestrian affinity by boasting one of the most exclusive stables in Ecuador. The hacienda is known for its Zuleteño horse which is a unique mixture of Spanish-Andalusian, English and Quarter horses. The outcome of this cross-breeding is a robust Andean horse with a good disposition for riding. Lunch at the hacienda. Dinner and overnight in the Hacienda Zuleta.

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Otavaleña, Otavalo Valley, Ecuador.
Photo: Iolanda Costa.
Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Day 6: Hacienda Zuleta - Otavalo Indian Market - Hacienda Cusín - Quito

Breakfast. At the foot of the Imbabura Volcano, surrounded by clear lakes, patchwork-covered hills and plantations of corn, lies the valley of Otavalo, a market town ensconced in its own mystical past and whose people are proud of their cultural heritage and traditions. Visit the ruins of the Incan Sun Temple at Caranqui, then choose between two options. For those more interested in native cultures, visit the village of Peguche, where musical instruments and woolen tapestries are made, the nearby sacred waterfall and other artisans' pueblos. For those more interested in nature, drive up to Cuicocha Lake and hike around this flooded volcanic crater with its twin islets. Here, you will observe a particular species of orchid that grows at this altitude (3,220 meters, or 10,562 feet).

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Iglesia de San Vicente Ferrer, Quiroga, Otavalo Valley, Ecuador.
Photo: Mylene d'Auriol Stoessel
. Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Time to explore the Otavalo Indian market, which dates back to pre-Inca times. The market is an experience for all senses: the aromas of traditional fare, soothing Andean panpipes, a kaleidoscope of colors, soft alpaca scarves and customary bargaining. The Otavaleños are owners of a rich inheritance, the customs of their craft; lovers of the rhythm of their music and their dance; and disciples of the legends of their earth mother, Pachamama. Experience an encounter with this proud race of people, whose cultural integrity endures, and discover ancient haciendas, authentic workshops and the incredible landscapes and lagoons of these fertile lands of the Gods.

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Hacienda Cusín, Otavalo Valley, Ecuador.
Photo: Mylene d'Auriol Stoessel.
Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Lunch at the Hacienda Cusín. Cusín was purchased by the prominent Luna family from King Philip II at an auction in Spain in 1602. The estate comprised the two valleys of Gualavi and La Rinconada, and all the land between the valleys and the lake, approximately 100,000 acres. During the last 400 years, Hacienda Cusín remained, for the most part, in the hands of two different Spanish families and was operated as a farm. After falling into ruins after several decades of neglect, the hacienda was restored in 1990 and opened for international tourism.

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

Iglesia de San Pablo and the Imbabura Volcano, Otavalo Valley, Ecuador.
Photo: Mylene d'Auriol Stoessel.
Luxury Ecuador Tours & Travel.

 

Returning to Quito under the shadow of the Cayambe Volcano, arrive at the palatial Casa Gangotena. Dine at Zazu, where chef Alexander Laud creates a fusion of South American and international cuisine. Overnight in the Casa Gangotena.

 

Day 7: Quito - Your next destination

Breakfast. Continue on a cruise of the Galapagos Islands or an expedition to Ecuador's Amazon Rainforest.

 

 

luxury Ecuador tours travel

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© 2013 Inka's Empire Corporation, Machu Picchu Tours & Peru Travel. All rights reserved.

luxury Ecuador tours travel