Top things to do

National Park in Reserva Ecológica Cotacachi-Cayapas

Reserva Ecológica Cotacachi-Cayapas

This 204,420-hectare reserve is by far the largest protected area of Ecuador’s western Andean habitats. Altitude ranges from about 200m above sea level around San Miguel to 4939m at the summit of Cotacachi. Habitats…
Lake in Reserva Ecológica Cotacachi-Cayapas

Laguna de Cuicocha

Head 18km west from Cotacachi and you’ll come upon this eerily still, dark lagoon cradled in a collapsed volcanic crater at 3100m. Some 3km wide and 200m deep, the lagoon features two mounded islands that shot up in…
Arts Center in Around Otavalo

Tahuantinsuyo Weaving Workshop

Jose Rafael Maldonado, Miguel Andrango's son-in-law, now runs the day-to-day operations of this internationally famous weaving family business, in its fourth generation of creating fabrics entirely by hand (except f…
Waterfall in Peguche

Cascadas de Peguche

Most visitors head out this way to see the Cascadas de Peguche, a series of falls sacred to locals – visitors are still welcome, however, during Inti Raymi, June’s festival of the sun, when locals conduct ritual cle…
Arts & Crafts in Peguche

El Gran Condor

On the central plaza of Peguche, El Gran Condor is the place for textile fanatics who didn’t find what they wanted in Otavalo. The shop sells high-quality textiles made locally, including sweaters, scarves and wall …
Music in Peguche

Taller de Instrumentos Andinos-Nañda Mañachi

Across from the basketball courts, Jose Luis Pichamba crafts traditional musical instruments, including panpipes, drums, and charangos, the 10-stringed mandolin-like instruments traditionally made from armadillo she…
Grill in Cotacachi

El Leñador

A carnivore's delight, this grill features fresh linen tablecloths and tasteful decor. Order any beef dish (the delicious consequences of a leather-making society), and it will arrive juicy and perfectly cooked to y…
Market in Cotacachi

Mercado Jatuk Cem 'Cotachi'

The stalls at this outdoor covered food court serve everything from marisquerías to parrillas (seafood to BBQ steak). The food is as good as the tourist-oriented white-tablecloth places in town and costs a third of …
Food in Cotacachi

Kawsay

Claudia and Marcelo Garcia produce a tasty range of amaranth-based products, including energy bars, granola, cookies and flour. They exhibit every Saturday at the Cava Caran brew-pub on Plaza de Ponchos in Otavalo. …
Cafe in Cotacachi

Cafe Rio Intag

Organically grown Intag Valley coffee, cakes and small sandwiches are served at this cool university-like hangout spot with comfy couches and a nifty downstairs nook. Check the noticeboard outside for cultural activ…