Explore the Andes of Ecuador
In Ecuador, the Andes split into two arms that run parallel southwards. The fertile valley trapped amidst these imposing walls, known as the inter-Andean alley, is home to a veritable treasure trove of biodiversity. Along the Avenue of Volcanoes, as Alexander Von Humboldt named it, you can find UNESCO World Heritage cities as Quito of Cuenca, but also colorful indigenous markets, Inca-time ruins, ancestral communities, all thriving under the watchful gaze of majestic volcanoes. Here, the Andes reach heights over 20,100 feet above sea level, as is the case with Chimborazo, the highest peak in Ecuador and also the highest point in the globe as measured from the center of earth.
The climate in the Andes varies according to altitude –the higher the colder. Typical daytime temperature oscillates between 16° and 25° C (60 –77°F) falling to 8° to 10° C (46° – 50°F ) by night.
Ice and snow are visible all year round in the snowcapped Andean volcanoes.
Traditional Andean cuisine is based on a range of staple native produce, such as corn, potato and quinoa combined with beef, chicken or fresh-water fish, mostly trout. But above all, the ever present soup, with corn, plantain, herbs, legumes, grains and whatever is available in the pantry.
Fresh-made fruit juices are traditionally served accompanying every meal.
Travel along the Ecuador Andes on board Tren Crucero
Tren Crucero travels along what Humboldt called “Volcano Avenues” an amazing parade of volcano summits protecting secluding valleys inhabited since ancestral times. This 4 day-3 night scenic ride crosses highlands, valleys, and dramatic river canyons before descending through cloud forest and tropical plantations towards the shores of the Pacific Ocean.
In barely 450 km, Tren Crucero climbs 11.800 feet, up or down depending on your starting point in the Pacific coast or in Quito. Both ways you will enjoy the journey of a lifetime in our beautiful cars that relive the spirit of the great voyages of early XXth century with the comfort of South America Leading Luxury train.
“Ecuador Highlights By Tren Ecuador” in the Andes
Capital city of Ecuador, its historical quarter was the first UNESCO World Heritage site in 1979. Located in the Inter –Andean alley at 2800 m a s l (9184 f.a.s.l) and surrounded by the two arms of the Andean range, Quito boasts the largest and best preserved historical quarter in South America.
Thriving under Tungurahua volcano, Baños offers a large variety of outdoors activities, from cycling, wild waters, rafting, trekking, horseback riding, canopying and cultural tourism around shuar communities, due to its privileged location between the highlands and the amazon rainforest.
Mindo, located at the northwest of Quito, is the destination for bird watchers. Following the many available trails you can also find an amazing assortment of orchids, frogs and butterflies, many of which are endemic species. There are also many places for rafting and canopying.