Train of Wonders
Quito - Guayaquil | 4 days - 4 nights | Tuesday to FridayBook Now
Our journey begins in the northern Andes of Ecuador, in the valley of Otavalo, where we will discover traditional cultures, handicrafts, and modern export-class rose plantations. From Quito we will start our trip to the coast, first climbing to the Chimborazo volcano moorlands along the Avenue of Volcanoes.
The Mythical “Devil’s Nose” pass awaits with its vertiginous zig-zag. Riding along the Chanchán river canyon we leave the highlands behind. We cross a cloud forest, then ride along the tropical plantations to the end of our trip in Guayaquil. We reach the shores of the Pacific Ocean after 504 km or rail and a 12,000 ft. descent to the sea.
We depart Quito early in the morning for a one-and-a-half drive north. In Otavalo, home of a millenary market, a carefully restored steam engine awaits us.
At a slow pace we will discover the many wonders hidden in this part of the country: musicians, painters, weavers and the skillful woodcarvers who keep the renowned Quito School style alive. After a tasting of traditional Andean cuisine and a visit to very special export-class rose plantation we return to Quito.
We board our convoy at Quito Chimbacalle station and begin our journey south along the Avenue of Volcanoes. If the weather permits, you can spot up to twenty volcanoes from the train –most extinct or dormant for centuries.
Here, the Andes range splits into two arms that run parallel down south. The fertile valley trapped between these stone walls hosts a treasure trove of biodiversity. From the comfort of our panoramic cars we watch the change of vegetation and landscape as we slowly climb the Andean highlands to Urbina, the highest point in our itinerary at 11,800 feet above sea level. In the skirts of mount Chimborazo we meet the last ice-merchant and learn the story of his ancestral trade.
We depart Riobamba towards Colta, where the Spanish conquerors built their first settlement in Ecuador. We cross colorful quinoa fields painted in purples, yellows and reds, alternating with endemic species of flora and wildlife, indigenous settlements and the remains of ancient cultures.
We visit Guamote market, one of the last indigenous markets in the Andes, before continuing south towards the mythical Devil’s Nose pass. A vertiginous descent of 450metres zig zag takes us from the Andean highlands down towards the coastal plains.
We continue our descent along the narrow Chanchán river gorge and crossing an impressive cloud forest towards the temperate city of Bucay.
The landscape changes again as the train leaves the tropical forest behind. Rice, sugar cane, pineapple and banana plantations pass before our eyes.
We have lunch at a traditional hacienda, where we can learn about the growing and harvesting of the best cocoa bean in the world. Later, the steam engine whites its way across the fields towards the shores of the Pacific Ocean and the end of our trip in a hotel in Guayaquil for overnight.
Standard $1650,00 per person (double acomodation)
Standard Child $1485,00*
* Rates for children apply from 2 years old to 11 years and 11 months old.
* Access to differentiated rates upon presentation of enabling documents.
2017 Rates and Departures are subject to change without prior notice.
TRAIN OF WONDERS
Quito - Guayaquil
3 / 17 / 31 jan | 14 / 28 feb | 14 / 28 mar | 11 / 25 apr | 9 / 23 may | 20 jun | 4 / 18 jul | 1 / 15 / 29 aug | 12 / 26 sep | 10 / 24 oct | 7 / 21 nov | 5 / 19 dec
Quito – Otavalo – San Roque – Andrade Marin – San Antonio – Ibarra
6:30 am Departure from Swissôtel.
*Otavalo-Ibarra with steam engine.
*Quito-Otavalo/ Ibarra-Quito by tourist bus
San Roque: Music and textile weaving
Andrade Marín: Visit to Imbabura Textiles Museum
San Antonio: Woodcarvers
Cayambe: Roses and Lunch
Return trip to Quito, dinner and night.
Quito – Boliche – Ambato – Urbina
6:30 am Departure from Swissôtel to Chimbacalle Train Station
Andean Forest trail in El Boliche recreational natural area.
Lunch on Board
Urbina: Artisans’ Square and meeting with The Last ice Merchant of Chimborazo.
Dinner and night in Riobamba.
Riobamba – Colta – Guamote – Alausi – Mirador Nariz del Diablo – Bucay
*Riobamba – Colta with steam engine.
Guamote: ancestral Andean market. Visit.
Lunch on Board
Alausi: Devil’s Nose descent and Pistishi lookout
Bucay: Dinner and night.
Bucay – Naranjito – Yaguachi – Durán (Guayaquil)
Cocoa and chocolate tasting in Hacienda
Montubio culture exhibition
Yaguachi to Duran with steam engine.
Transfer to the hotel in Guayaquil for overnight.
The program includes transportation aboard Tren Crucero, all meals during the trip, snacks and soft drinks on board, guide in Spanish and English*, excursions according to the itinerary, transportation by bus/van during the program for excursions and accommodation based on double occupancy. In the Quito to Guayaquil route, once the train has arrived at Duran station (Guayaquil), you will be transferred to the hotel for overnight**.
*Guidance in languages other than Spanish and English as Italian, French, German, Portuguese and Japanese can be provided on request. It is subject to availability and applies an extra cost.
**For Day 4: Dinner is not included. Breakfast included for the next day.
Taxes, alcoholic beverages (Tren Crucero offers wine, beer and whiskey), meals and excursions not included in the program, air tickets, personal expenses, gratuities or transfers to hotels different from the ones listed here. Passengers are recommended to purchase travel insurance.
CLOTHING: Wear layers: a jacket for cold weather and a light coat for the rain (coast). Comfortable walking shoes, hat, sunscreen with high SPF, repellant, sunglasses. Don’t forget your camera!
ALTITUDE: It ranges from 80 to 3,610 meters above sea level. The temperature ranges from 14 ° to 35 °C.
IMPORTANT: Duran station is 30 minutes away from Guayaquil. Take it into account to ensure you arrive on time for check-in. In Quito, Swissôtel is located in the city of Quito, Avenida 12 de Octubre y Luis Cordero. Unusued services are not refunded. Consult with our sales department about the possibility of boarding Tren Crucero Train of Wonders (southbound) in Otavalo.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: All itineraries are subjected to change due to force majeure or technical, operational circumstances. Please check our policy regarding refunds and cancellations. At Tren Ecuador we are committed to providing the best possible travel experience.