Welcome to Latacunga

Volcán Cotopaxi, which dominates the town on a clear day, erupted violently in 1742 and 1768, destroying much of the city both times. The indomitable survivors rebuilt, only to have an immense eruption in 1877 wreak havoc a third time. In 2015 Latacunga was once again coated in ash from Cotopaxi; luckily, no lava flows damaged the town this time.

To celebrate their rich indigenous and Catholic history, the people of Latacunga put on one of the most famous and magnificent parties in all of Ecuador, the Mama Negra festival.

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Latacunga activities

$99 Day Trips & Excursions

Quilotoa Lagoon, Ecuadorian Andes Private Day Trip from Quito

ItineraryThis is a typical itinerary for this productStop At: Laguna Quilotoa, Cotopaxi ProvinceWhen the Quilotoa volcano last erupted in 1280, it left behind a gaping caldera 3 kilometers (1.8 miles) across, which is now filled with brilliant turquoise water. The word “quilotoa” comes from the local Quechua language, a group native to the central Andes region.Duration: 4 hours

$296 Multi-day & Extended Tours

2 Day Private Tour to Quilotoa Lagoon and Baños Village from Quito

Day 1: Quito - Quilotoa Lagoon ( lunch )Your 2-day tour starts a journey through the Avenue of the Volcanoes, passing through by the towns of Latacunga and Pujilí. On the way to Quilotoa, you’ll stop to visit an indigenous thatched house from the Paramos tribe, where you’ll observe customs of residents.Visit the town of Tigua, famous for its naive paintings. Then, continue up to the Quilotoa volcano, where you will be able to descend to the Quilotoa Lagoon located inside the crater. Once there you can enjoy of kayaking ride inside of the lake or go mule riding back to the top.Overnight in BañosDay 2: Baños - Quito (breakfast, lunch)After breakfast, you will take a walk to Agoyan Pailón del Diablo and Manto de la Novia waterfalls where it is possible to take a cable car down near the waterfall and Casa del Árbol to have a spectacular view of Baños.Lunch and around 14:30 pm return to Quito.

$219 Day Trips & Excursions

Private Day Trip to Quilotoa Lagoon and Markets from Quito

Join this full-day tour to Quilotoa and local market departing at time 7:00am from your hotel.This full day cultural tour begins with a visit to local indigenous market at either Saquisilli (Thursdays only) or Pujili (Sundays only).A small market town located only a few miles away from Latacunga and the Quito-Ambato highway.Pujili is a small town with a rich culture and history. Most of the inhabitants of Pujili are indigenous and the best time to see native customs and clothing are the market days: Wednesdays and Sundays. Men and women from surrounding villages will pack up their llamas and donkeys early in the morning in order to come to the market and sell their extra produce for whatever money they can make.The trip through the villages of the area provide a fantastic chance to see one of the most authentic parts of the country. Before lunch we visit a local indigenous home where you have the opportunity to interact with the locals. Then we will visit the community of Tigua, a well-known place for its handicrafts. From here we will continue our trip towards the volcano Quilotoa.The drive to Laguna Quilotoa, an amazing emerald lagoon inside a volcano crater at the height of approximately 3,800m, displays a beautiful view of the Andean mountains, passing the ancient canyon of Zumbahua and many indigenous towns and farmlands. Then we will walk 2-hour round the crater rim or hiking down the crater. Return option from the lake to the Rim by mule (Optional) Arrival in Quito at approximately 6:30pm.

$498 Cultural & Theme Tours

Quilotoa Hiking Private 3-Day Tour with Local Communities

ItineraryDay 1: Cotopaxi National ParkStop At: Cotopaxi National Park, Cotopaxi ProvinceVisit to Cotopaxi Volcano located in Cotopaxi National Park. Departing from Quito, admire the beautiful Andes mountain range on the way. Upon arrival, visit the Interpretation Center to learn more about Ecuador's 2nd highest mountain peak, flora, fauna of the National Park. A short hike through the surroundings of the Limpiopungo valley, and then climb from an altitude of about 4,500 meters above sea level to an elevation of about 4,830 meters (Padre Rivas Refuge) If physical conditions allow you hike up to the glacier (5,000 meters) Lunch at a local hosteria in the surroundings. Overnight in ChugchilanDuration: 3 hoursMeals included: • Lunch • DinnerAccommodation included: Overnight at Mama Hilda Lodge / or Black Sheep LodgeDay 2: Quilotoa - Chugchilan 4 hour hikeStop At: Laguna Quilotoa, Cotopaxi ProvinceQuilotoa is a water-filled caldera and the most western volcano in the Ecuadorian Andes. The 3-kilometer (2 miles)-wide caldera was formed by the collapse of this dacite volcano following a catastrophic VEI-6 eruption about 600 years ago, which produced pyroclastic flows and lahars that reached the Pacific Ocean and spread an airborne deposit of volcanic ash throughout the northern Andes. This last eruption followed a dormancy period of 14,000 years and is known as the 1280 Plinian eruption. The fourth (of seven) eruptive phase was phreatomagmatic, indicating that a Crater lake was already present at that time. The caldera has since accumulated a 250 m (820 ft) deep crater lake, which has a greenish color as a result of dissolved minerals.Duration: 4 hoursMeals included: • Lunch • Dinner • BreakfastAccommodation included: Overnight at Mama Hilda Lodge or Black Sheep LodgeDay 3: 4 hour Hike Chugchilan - IsinliviStop At: Canon del Rio Toachi, Pujili, Cotopaxi Province4-hour hike from Chugchilan to Isinlivi passing through Cañon del Toachi, indigenous Andes houses, and landscapeDuration: 4 hoursMeals included: • Breakfast • LunchNo accommodation included on this day.

$280 Day Trips & Excursions

3-day Bike&Hike Trip Cotopaxi Quilotoa Chimborazo the heart of the Andes

ItineraryDay 1: Cotopaxi National ParkStop At: Cotopaxi National Park, Cotopaxi ProvinceAt 07:00 AM we leave Quito and after driving south for 1,5 hours on the Pan-American highway we reach the park entrance of Cotopaxi National Park. We drive through pine forest and soon we arrive at the Visitors Center of the park. After visiting the Center, we continue the ascent in our 4-wheel drive vehicle until we reach the highest point of the tour, 4.500 meters/15.000 feet. The view from this point is stunning and on a clear day, we are able to see 8 volcanoes.We then put on helmets, gloves and protective pads and the bike adventure on the world’s highest active volcano can begin. The first 8 km will take us down 700 m. on dirt roads through volcanic ash and páramo landscape. At 3.800 m. you actually have to do some pedaling while we head down another 8 km between volcanic rocks and wild horses to our lunch spot by an Inca ruin at 3.700 m. With some luck, we might see a condor or a caracara. We put the bikes back on the jeep and head for the lake of Limpiopungo at 3.800 m. where we start the 16 km downhill biking on dirt roads and the bike adventure is over at this time. We then ascend by jeep in a northwest direction into the western Cordillera arriving at Quilotoa to spend the night. The night's retreat is a simple but clean inn located in Quilotoa run by an indigenous family.Duration: 5 hoursMeals included: • Lunch: Great organic, home made lunch. Brownies with chocolate from the Amazon Water Tea We cater for diets with specific needsAccommodation included: Overnight in a simple Inn run by the Indigenous community of Quilotoa. Clean. Good bed. Sustainable lodgingDay 2: Quilotoa crater LakeStop At: Laguna Quilotoa, Cotopaxi ProvinceToday we start with an early hike down to the deep, jade-colored Quilotoa Crater Lake. The hike downhill to the lake takes about 30 minutes, and about twice as long to climb back up. But, you can hire a mule or donkey to carry you back to the top, where breakfast will be awaiting you to charge your batteries for the day's adventure! After breakfast, we descend on mountain bikes to Zumbahua. Many years ago, an earthquake destroyed this area. The land has transformed into a rugged formation resembling the terrain from another planet. Lunch is a picnic at a location where we have the opportunity to intermingle with the Quechua Indians or test your artistic skills with the locals painting landscapes of the area.After lunch, we enjoy a 30-minute drive until we reach 4,200 m (13.400 ft). We switch then to human power and the downhill bike ride begins down a long and winding road all the way back to Latacunga, located at 2400 m. (7,600 ft.). We then continue by jeep to URBINA where dinner at a quaint mountain refuge will be waiting for youDuration: 6 hoursMeals included: • Lunch: Great organic, home made lunches. Brownies with cocoa from the Amazon. water. We cater for diets with Specific needs • BreakfastAccommodation included: Overnight in a quaint mountain inn. On a clear night see the Milkyway shining aboveDay 3: Chimborazo to Ambato. Bike on the countryside of EcuadorStop At: Mount Chimborazo, Chimborazo ProvinceWe drive for just over an hour to Mount Chimborazo (6310m), the highest and most impressive of Ecuador's volcanoes. We park at the lower refuge (4800 m) and continue on foot to the Edgar Whymper Refuge. Located at 5000 meters this is the highest refuge in the world! From here, it's all downhill-first on foot and then by bike we descend all the way to Ambato (2800m). This is an amazing bike ride through the highlands, with vicuñas being the sole inhabitants of these wild stretches. On this tour, cyclists enjoy a breathtaking 70 km ride through varying landscapes in just one day. This trip is by far a customer favorite. Seldom does one have the chance to ride from the snow line of a volcano, through rural Andean patchwork fields, picnic with vicuñas and at the end of the ride arrive in a modern city. In Ambato, we load up the bikes and return to Quito by jeep.Duration: 7 hoursMeals included: • Breakfast • Lunch: Lunch - Great organic, home made lunches. Pineapple up-side down water. We cater for diets with Specific needs No accommodation included on this day.

$70 Cultural & Theme Tours

Quilotoa Excursión de un día - (Tour Económico)

Explore el auténtico Ecuador andino en este día de recorrido cultural nos llevará a una de las más hermosas lagunas de Ecuador y América del Sur. Visite la asombrosa Laguna Quilotoa, donde realizará una caminata hasta el lago. También podrá visitar el mercado local y conocer a una familia en uno de los poblados cercanos, con especial atención a la cultura y la vida rural de los pueblos indígenas andinos. Su recorrido compartido sale de un punto de encuentro centralizado en Baños de Agua Santa.