Otavalo Ride

Haciendas Ecuador: (IT-ECSR02)
URL: http://www.hiddentrails.com/tour/ecuador_otavalo_ride.aspx

Introduction
Haciendas Ecuador
Your riding trip unravels at the 17th century Andean estate near Otavalo - This Hacienda is one of the leading country inns in Ecuador. Its white walls and terracotta tiles nestle beneath a deep blue sky in a wide, pastoral valley. It is the antithesis of urban life. You will explore the beautiful countryside on several riding days through the valley and up the mountains - all along meeting friendly natives with their colorful dresses and adorable children.

Celebrities and royalty alike have chosen this place as their luxurious base for their travels in Ecuador, and once you step foot inside its courtyard gates, you’ll know why. Dine by Koi fountains filled with fragrant rosebuds, explore nooks and crannies for the hidden doorway or head to the village to look for exquisite handicrafts. Return to your antique-filled room after dinner, and you’ll be greeted by a roaring blaze in your very own kiva fireplace.

The first ride is a short 2-hour ride to get used to the horses and tack, leaving enough time to visit the Otavalo Indigenous market in the afternoon. You will be in the saddle for 3 to 5 hours for your remaining riding days. There are options to extend your ride by one or two nights with lots more riding, or if you want to combine your stay with more sightseeing - you can opt for 2 hrs of riding a day - leaving enough free time to venture out on your own to explore.

Accomodation



Accommodations
This is a stationary ride, so all nights are spent in the same location.

Description
The Hacienda is a restored 17th century Andean estate at 8,500 feet, 90 minutes north of Quito and 20 minutes south from the famous market town of Otavalo. The Equatorial line and snowcapped Cayambe Mountain are 30 minutes away. The hacienda's terracotta-tile roofs, winding cobblestone pathways, courtyards and perennial gardens nestle beneath a deep blue sky in a wide, pastoral lake valley. Nearby, the often snowcapped 15,000-foot Cotacachi volcano is reflected in Lago San Pablo. An ancient lakebed, cool nights and a predictable equatorial sun have conspired with avid gardeners to create several acres of ever-blooming gardens which include belladonna, bougainvillea, agapantha, acanthas, foxgloves, orchids and palms that attract over 50 species of birds.

Main House

Individually decorated guestrooms and garden cottages, with private bathrooms with oversize towels and toiletries, are furnished with selected fine Andean crafts, king-size beds with hand woven bed-covers, antiques, writing desks and views of prolific perennial gardens and often snow-capped mountains. Most of the guestrooms have garden access and a log-fire for cool evenings. Electricity, 110 v., plugs as in U.S.A.

Public rooms such as Salon Bolivar, Salon Cotacachi, Sala de Lectura, library (where tea is served all day), dining room and refectory, are antique furnished and have log-burning fireplaces.
Relax in the uniquely furnished Salon Bolivar, the cozy bar, or the library and garden reading room with French windows that look onto an adobe-walled garden and lawns under an ancient cedro tree. Enjoy Ecuadorian and International cuisine in a dining room with antique wall tapestries and chandeliers, dinner by candlelight and a log fire. Laundry is available for an additional fee. WIFI is available in the main house and the library.



Amenities
Television/ VCR viewing rooms with 200 selected feature documentary video films.
Telephone, fax, email, copy machine, overhead projector, 35mm projectors, VCRs.
Conference room seating 55 / 100 for presentation, 4 seminar rooms
Library and game room (ping pong and pool table)

The Garden
A grand 7 acres with 58 species of plans attract 49 species of birds. The black soil and predictable equatorial sun have created seven acres of ever blooming gardens. Annuals have become perennials. The library's French windows look onto a large, walled, ever blooming garden filled with lawns, deep yellow blossoms of the cholan tree, palm, belladonna, bougainvillea, foxgloves, hollyhocks and orchids.



Spanish Class
Experienced teachers, will offer tailor-made classes for individuals, families, and groups of all ages. Classes will meet in Monasterio, a garden walk from the hacienda, set in a magnificent Andean landscape of lakes and snowcapped mountains. Tuition costs, beginning at $12 per hour for individuals. Courses are tailor-made and designed on demand for any period year round.

Nanny

By request

Room Occupancy
Single and triple rooms are available at request.
Single supplement is only mandatory for those who are not willing to share.


Meals
All meals are included from lunch on Day 1 to breakfast on your last day. Delicious Ecuadorian and European meals are served. Vegetables and fruits are locally grown. Menus based on local soups and appetizers and International styles for the main dish. The dining room water is potable. Alcohol is not included on the trip, but can be purchased for an additional fee.
Dress code is casual by day, smart-casual for dinner.

Dietary Restrictions
We can cater to dietary restrictions given prior notice.


This trip includes and can accommodate special dietary requests.

Riding

Recommendations

  • Drink plenty of water before your trip. For longer journeys water will be supplied
  • Apply sun-block beforehand and bring sunglasses. The equatorial sun is extremely strong even behind the clouds. Obligatory helmets come with visors.
  • Wear jeans or thick pants and a sturdy pair of shoes or sneakers
  • Bring a camera to capture the astounding views but make sure it is well protected

Animals
Usually to be found in the stables: 8 horses, llamas, pigs, guinea-pigs, rabbits, guinea-hens, turkeys, chickens, dogs, cows, geese, etc.

Itinerary

Sample Itinerary - subject to changes

Day 1: Arrival
Arrival in the morning. Check in and have lunch. Afternoon 2 hour ride to get to know your horse and guide. Free time for walking or touring around, Otavalo Market, visits to weaving, leather or wood carving studious, or own arrangements. Dinner and overnight at the Hacienda.

Day 2: La Avra
This ride boasts a spectacular combination of indigenous communities, deep forest, and breathtaking views. It was one of my favorite rides with a nice mix of challenge, easy walking and opportunity for galloping. As we rode out of the stable doors, the horses seemed particularly frisky which was fortunate considering the long climb ahead. La Avra, a lush forested peak to the right side of Imbabura volcano, is visible from the stables, although don’t be fooled by how close it appears. 
For the first forty-five minutes we ascended the narrow, dusty roads up from San Pablo, passing through the indigenous communities of Imbaburita, Angla and Topo. The locals, particularly the children greeted us with a cheerful ‘Hola’ or ‘Buenos dias’. In the community of Topo, we passed a quaint, little church with lovely music wafting out. The socio-cultural exposure of this ride will be fascinating for all.  
After reaching a certain altitude, we entered a pristine forest of eucalyptus trees that might be mistaken for paradise. The view is magnificent from here and we took a moment to admire Imbabura to the right, the dark blue Lago San Pablo below and the Gualavi Valley to the left with Cusin Hill behind. The ascent through the forest was steep and a bit treacherous at points, but the horses moved along with great confidence and agility. Emerging from the forest, we encountered fields of golden wheat and green vegetation planted into the steep hillside. Up ahead was the peak of La Avra. Before beginning the descent along a different path closer to Imbabura, we observed the mighty, snowcapped Cayambe Volcano and also caught a peak of the monstrous Cotapaxi Volcano far off in the distance, to the south of Quito. 
During the ride back, we made our way through a different section of forest, through the community of Imbaburita and then across the town of San Pablo. The beauty of the descending is that you don’t have to turn around to admire the fantastic view because it’s right there in front of you. I was particularly struck by the view of Mojanda Mountain across from us on the southern side of the lake. It was lunchtime when we reached the Hacienda, and we all enjoyed a glass of fresh lemonade before a delicious and well deserved feast. 
Riding: 4.5-5 hours

Day 3: Cusin Mountain
We quickly cross the valley with its different farms and then start to climb Cusin mountain through eucalyptus forests to the above tree line and up to the top. After enjoying the 360° view of beautiful valleys, we descend to our picnic spot and come home in the afternoon. The ride goes up to the above tree line “paramo”, it might be cold and foggy up there.
This one is a steep ride with narrow paths. You will ride having a view of Rose Plantation greenhouses, through Eucalyptus forests, rocks, roots and slippery inclines. After a long climb through the woods, you come out onto an overgrown cobblestone road which continues upwards. Here you have a view way down to the lake. Dinner and overnight at the Hacienda.
Riding: 5 hours

Day 4: Agato Village
Excellent ride to appreciate the best landscapes of the area. You will be able to enjoy the quiet and relaxing view of San Pablo lagoon, realize the magnitude of Otavalo’s town and the always nice Imbabura volcano. During the ride you will stop for enjoy your picnic and then continuing with the view of forest, small villages and more.
Considered one of the nicest rides in the area. Dinner and overnight at the Hacienda.
Riding: 5 hours

Day 5: Pesillo- Zuleta (Departure if you are on the 5-day itinerary)   
If you are sticking to the 5-day itinerary, today will be your departure day after breakfast.
A 25-minute drive brings you to our starting point. This ride will be out through pine and eucalyptus forests and high-altitude grasslands to pre-Inca archeological sites amid magnificent volcano views. You can also hike, cycle, or take tours to nearby indigenous villages. We rise out of San Pablo valley, enjoying wonderful views across the lake and also of Imbabura volcano, riding onto the plains beyond for some fast-paced riding. Views of Zuleta valley, the verdant gorges and the 'paramo' (the unique Andean habitat of high grasslands) as we pass dewponds and hedges of aloe vera and spikey agave (sisal) atop mud walls. Following sandy tracks, we then descend into the Zuleta valley with dramatic views across to the hanging valleys and rocky ridges above. A chance of seeing hummingbirds and bright scarlet flycatchers.
Riding: 7 hours

Day 6: Cochasqui- Mojanda- Otavalo
It is the furthest ride from the hacienda. You will reach the spectacular complex of lagoons named Mojanda. This ride is perfect to get involved with nature and appreciate the forest and views of the area.
Riding: 7 hours

Day 7: Departure
Our trip concludes after breakfast.

--Additional full days expeditions can be added if you want to extend your stay by a couple of nights.


Rates and Dates for Otavalo Ride

Rates include:

4 nights accommodations, all meals, Spanish speaking horse guide.

Packages and Options



  • SeasonYearDescription US$
    A
    20195 day trip, AP$865
    • Single supplement$20
      Triple room discount, pp($5)
  • B
    20197 day trip, AP$1520
    • Single supplement$145
      Triple room discount, pp($50)
Gratuity:
A 10% gratuity will be added to your invoice. Feel free to also tip your horse guide.
%

Tax 1: 12 % * prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy
Gratuity: 10 %
Tax: 12 %  

Transfer and Other Charges:



 DescriptionUS$
2019 Transfer from new Quito airport or hotel (1-2 pass) return ~
This is a "Group Rate" - to be paid locally
$180
2019 Transfer from new Quito airport or hotel (3-4 pass) return ~
This is a "Group Rate" - to be paid locally
$235
2019 Local bus from Quito one way ~
- to be paid locally
$10

Season Seasons  Min / MaxReserve
A 2019 01/01 - 12/31 5d / 4n 5 day trip, AP 1 /7 Reserve
B 2019 01/01 - 12/31 7d / 6n 7 day trip, AP 1 /7 Reserve

Dates Note: any time throughout the year
Sold Out Dates: Mar 4-9, Mar 20-234, May 31 to Jun 3, Jul 17-24, Aug 9-21, Oct 10-13, Oct 18-21, Nov 7-10, Nov 15-24

Rates do not include:

Transfers, insurance, personal expenses, extra riding hours not included in packages.

Other Info
Meeting: San Pablo
Airport: Quito
Transfer: Quito hotel or airport

Climate:
                                            Quito area


Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Average High Temperature (°F)

66

66

66

66

66

67

67

68

68

67

67

66

Average Low Temperature (°F)

49

49

49

49

49

48

47

48

47

48

48

48

Average High Temperature (°C)

19

19

19

19

19

19

19

20

20

20

19

19

Average Low Temperature (°C)

9

10

9

10

9

9

8

9

9

9

9

9

Source: NOAA


Seasons
The hacienda is located in the highlands of Ecuador and enjoys a temperate Andean climate with temperatures ranging from the mid 50°F to the low 70°F. Therefore, there is never a bad time to visit, even though the nights can get chilly all year-round. Some afternoon rain showers are possible from October to January. June to September are the hottest, driest months with the clearest skies.

What To Bring:

This list is only a guideline for you

 

Travel documents and Voucher

Flight tickets

Passport

Visa (check with your consulate)

 

RIDING GEAR

Riding pants or Jodhpurs (used if possible!)

Riding boots (short) + Minichaps

Riding helmet  (Helmets must be worn)

Riding gloves

Hat (with chin strip) for sun protection

Lightweight Rain coat

 

PERSONAL CLOTHING

Jacket or sweater for cool evenings

Comfortable T-Shirts/Shirts

Jeans

Shorts

Underwear and socks

Pajama

Bag for dirty clothes

Trekking boots/ comfortable shoes

Swimsuit

 

ADDITIONAL THINGS TO BRING

Personal Toiletries

Insect protection

Personal medications

Sore cream (for the emergency)

Sewing kit

Handkerchiefs

Adapter for electric appliances

Camera and enough extra films and batteries

Belt pack

Address book and pen (for pictures postcards!)

Sun glasses with strap

Sun tan lotion and lip balm