Punanti Andean Experience from Quito

Olmedo (Pesillo), Ecuador

Midland Travel
  • Email address verified
11 reviews
Duration: 3 days
Group size: 1 - 16
Punanti Andean Experience from Quito
Olmedo (Pesillo), Ecuador

Midland Travel
  • Email address verified
11 reviews

Duration: 3 days
Group size: 1 - 16

About this trip


Experience the Andean magic of Ecuador’s rural region around Cayambe Volcano with this multi-day tour. Starting from Quito, your journey will take you to some of the most breathtaking natural landscapes in the country. From the cultural center Quitsato to the community center in La Chimba, this tour offers a blend of history, culture, and natural beauty.

You’ll stay at the modern mountain refuge of Hostal Punanti, nestled amidst beautiful paramo landscapes. Wake up to stunning views of Cayambe Volcano, soak in natural hot springs, enjoy a peaceful moment amidst the local flora, and enjoy a delicious dinner with western flavors prepared by your hosts.

Whether you’re interested in exploring Ecuador’s natural beauty, learning about its rich culture and history, or seeking an adventure in the Andean region, this tour has something for everyone. Join us for an unforgettable experience in Ecuador’s Northern Andes!

Why You Will Love This Multi-Day Tour

-> Directly support rural communities and get in touch with locals, learning about the Andean region’s rich cultural heritage

-> Stay at a modern mountain refuge at the northern slope of Cayambe Volcano, enjoy delicious meals with locally sourced ingredients and breathtaking views of the surrounding paramo landscape

-> Hike to the Condor Viewpoint and observe Andean wildlife, with a chance to see the endangered Condor

-> Relax in natural hot springs and experience a peaceful moment amidst beautiful local flora

-> Learn about indigenous leader Tránsito Amaguaña's fight for women's and indigenous people's rights at the community center

-> Explore Hacienda Guachalá, one of Ecuador's oldest haciendas, with buildings dating back to 1580

Important Notes

-> The lodge's capacity is limited, so book in advance!

-> Contact us to find out about additional activities such as horseback riding and rock climbing.

-> The itinerary is subject to change for operational reasons beyond our control (e.g. bad weather).

-> Midland Travel recommends all passengers to have travel insurance that includes personal medical insurance and trip cancellation.

-> Level of difficulty: Moderate to challenging. Hikes can be adjusted to your capabilities.

-> If you have any food restrictions, special health requirements or needs, please let us know in advance.

-> Punanti Hostel is located at 3,800 meters above sea level (MASL), therefore it is important to be well acclimatized.

-> Pack warm clothing, good hiking shoes, a rainproof windbreaker, sun protection, snacks and a reusable water bottle.

-> Contact us for special group rates or a discount if you arrange your own transportation to Cayambe.

What’s included

  • Private transportation
    from Quito
  • Visits and activities
    according to the itinerary
  • Local guides
    during visits
  • Entrance fees
    for the activities mentioned in the itinerary
  • 2 nights
    at Punanti Hostel
  • Meals
    according to the itinerary
  • Water, coffee and tea
    at the hostel

What’s not included

  • Additional meals, drinks
  • Tips
  • Additional services
    not previously mentioned as included
  • VAT for Ecuadorians

Available Packages

Bed in dorm (solo traveler)
Available until 5 days before departure

Bed in mixed dorm with shared bathroom.

Deposit: $133
Bed in dorm (2 travelers)
Available until 5 days before departure

Price per person. Minimum 2 people required.

Bed in mixed dorm with shared bathroom.

Deposit: $85
Bed in dorm (3 or more travelers)
Available until 5 days before departure

Price per person. Minimum 3 people required.
Bed in mixed dorm with shared bathroom.

Deposit: $70
Private cabin (solo traveler)
Available until 5 days before departure

Single cabin with private bathroom.

Deposit: $163
Private cabin (2 travelers)
Available until 5 days before departure

Price per person. Minimum 2 people required.
Double cabin with private bathroom.

Deposit: $97
Private cabin (3 or more travelers)
Available until 5 days before departure

Price per person. Minimum 3 people required. 

Double, triple or cuadruple cabin with private bathroom. 

Deposit: $80


Day 1
Quito – Quitsato – La Chimba

Your guide will pick you up from your hotel in Quito after breakfast and you’ll start your journey to the northeast. After approximately 1.5 hours, you will stop at the cultural center Quitsato to visit its impressive sundial. The sundial is located on the equinoctial line and has a diameter of more than 50 meters. A local guide will explain how the sundial works and its historical and cultural importance for the local communities.

After your visit to the sundial, you’ll pass through Cayambe. This Andean town lies at the foot of Cayambe Volcano and is known for its special pastries called bizcochos. At the northern end of the city, you will leave the highway and start your ascent towards La Chimba community. After approximately 40 minutes, you’ll arrive at Hostal Punanti, a modern mountain refuge surrounded by beautiful paramo landscapes. This cozy place at the north face of Cayambe Volcano will be your home for the next couple of days. A typical Ecuadorian lunch prepared by someone from the local community will await you here.

In the afternoon, you’ll walk from Punanti to the nearby hot springs and enjoy a peaceful moment amidst the beautiful local flora. The hike takes approximately one and a half hours each way. The first part of the hike includes a steep ascent, but the views of the volcano’s snowfields and the colorful vegetation along the way make you forget the exertion. As you advance on your hike, you will suddenly notice the presence of swallows, who give the hot springs “Termas de las Golondrindas” their name.

These natural hot springs are conveniently located in a bay at 3800 m (12,470 ft), so you can enjoy a relaxing bath protected from the wind. Bathing in this water that reaches temperatures of up to 35°C (95°F) will renew your energies. Moreover, it is said to have medicinal properties, which makes it a popular destination among locals as well.

In the evening you will return to the hostel to enjoy a delicious dinner with western flavors, prepared by your hosts.

Accommodation at Punanti Hostel.

Meals included: lunch, dinner

Your Organizer

Midland Travel
11 reviews
Midland Travel is an Ecuadorian travel agency and tour operator headquartered in Quito. Our wide portfolio includes tours to all four regions of Ecuador (Galapagos, Amazonia, Andean highlands and the coast) as well as to our neighboring country Peru. Midland Travel arranges vacation packages from budget to high-end luxury for individual travelers and groups.


The cruise covered several islands with completely different landscapes. The variety of wildlife was amazing both above and below the water. The crew and guide were very friendly and provided a superior service. The food was of excellent quality, although I would have preferred more Ecuadorian food and the desserts far too sugary and bland. The boat and the bedroom/en-suite were kept immaculate for the whole week.
By GARY C for Galapagos cruise aboard M/C Anahi on Oct 05, 2023
We were very happy with the service we received from Midland Travel. They arranged for a mini-van transport from Quito to Cuenca with stays in Latacunga, Banos, Riobamba. Our English speaking driver/guide Guillermo was a very safe driver abd we got along with great. Guillermo also accompanied us on our hikes up Cotopaxi and Quilotoa crater. He made stops at local attractions along the way, educated us on local culture and history and never rushed us or pressured us to shop at any particular store or outlet.. Alejandro was our sales consultant and provided us with straight forward reasonable pricing with no games or bait and switch. Alejandro patently answered every question we had and his responses were super quick.
By Chandrashekar A for Private trip from Quito to Cuenca on Sep 04, 2023
Thank you for the fantastic experience
By ALEXANDER S for Galapagos cruise aboard MY Cachalote Explorer on Sep 01, 2023
Fantastic! Midland travel was very helpful with our travel needs for the Galápagos Islands. Alejandro found a child tailored experience for us as many ships do not allow small children. Payment was trustworthy and quick. Responses are quick! I highly recommend booking through Midland travel and using WeTravel for payment
By Jennifer A for Galapagos cruise aboard Tip Top IV on Aug 19, 2023
We had an amazing time, the boat was good but more importantly, the guide and the crew were amazing, they couldn’t do enough. They arranged trips at times when we could see the most wildlife, ahead of groups on other boats. It was a really good choice for us as most of the other cruise participants had a similar attitude, wanting to see as much wildlife as possible and take advantage of every opportunity. The locations on the cruise were perfect for what we wanted to see and do. Thank you so much for finding a cruise that suited our budget and our requirements so well.
By HELEN H for Galapagos cruise aboard M/Y Monserrat on Mar 16, 2023
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