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.


Top experiences in Latacunga

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Latacunga activities

$98 Day Trips & Excursions

Quilotoa Lagoon, Ecuadorian Andes Private Day Trip from Quito

Your full-day tour begins with early morning pickup from your hotel/accommodation in Quito. You will drive south of Quito through the Avenue of the Volcanoes and pass through the towns of Latacunga and Pujilí.You will stop and visit an indigenous local house from the “Paramos” and observe their traditions and way of life. Enter their home, made of straw and enjoy time interacting with them. You will learn about their life and how they prepare the soil to sow. After your visit, head to the town of Tigua, famous for its native paintings. Continue up to the Quilotoa volcano, where you will be able to descend to the lake located inside the crater or just walk around the crater. You will also be able to enjoy an unforgettable experience by mule back riding. Enjoy lunch (if option selected) and stand in awe at the most beautiful landscapes in the highlands and traditional indigenous villages.Finally, you will return to Quito to be dropped-off at your hotel. Note: On Thursdays, Saquisilí Indigenous Market

$296 Multi-day & Extended Tours

Private 2-Day Quilotoa Lagoon and Baños 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 Multi-day & Extended Tours

Quilotoa Hiking Private 3-Day Tour with Local Communities

Day 1 (L)After hotel pickup early in the morning, you will board a vehicle at about 7:30am and head to Quilotoa. You will drive south of Quito through the Avenue of the Volcanoes and pass by the towns of Latacunga and Pujilí. On the way, you will stop to visit an indigenous local house from the “Paramos”. Here, you will observe their clothes and customs, but most importantly you will visit their typical indigenous house made of straw. Share some moments with them, talking, watching and learning about their life and how they prepare the soil to sow. Then, you will head to visit the town of Tigua, famous for its naive paintings. Continue the drive up to Quilotoa volcano, where you will be able to descend to the lake located inside the crater or just walk around the crater for 3 hours. Prepare yourself to enjoy an unforgettable experience by mule back riding! Enjoy of the most beautiful landscape in the highlands and traditional indigenous villages. Accommodation in Quilotoa at a local lodge.Day 2: (B) (L) You will leave the Quilotoa Crater after breakfast to hike down and up to Chugchilan. It is a 5 to 6 hours hike, going up to between 12,796 feet (3,900 meters) and 10,499 feet (3,200 meters). You will cross the Rio Toachi Canyon and then head back up to get to the road that takes you to Chugchilan. During this 5-hour hike, you will have excellent views on the Toachi Canyon, and you will get good impressions what life is like on the countryside in the Andes. Accommodation in Chugchilan at a local lodge.Day 3: (B) (L)After breakfast, you leave with your guide towards Isinlivi, the next village on your trip. Enjoy a 4-hour hike going down into the warm canyon of Rio Toachi and relaxing at the riverbed before going the last meters up to Isinlivi. During the hike, you will descend 400 meters with an ascent of 300 meters, covering a distance of 7 miles (12 kilometers). Enjoy lunch and then return to Quito.

$890.82 Outdoor Activities

4 Day Quilotoa Hostel Hopping Hike and Cotopaxi Volcano

ITINERARY DAY 1 (L,D):QUITO – COTOPAXI NATIONAL PARK – ISINLIVI TOWNEarly in the morning your guide and transportation will pick you up to head south along the Avenue of the Volcanoes. You will be an entire day at the Cotopaxi National Park visiting the museum and enjoying a hike through this wonderful world of the Ecuadorian paramo. Visit the Limpiopungo Lake and continue to the refuge at 5,897 meters above sea level. The perfect cone-shaped mountain, covered in glaciers is rising heavenwards and with good weather, you can watch over almost all the peaks in the country. Afterwards you will have a lovely night staying over at Isinlivi town. DAY 2 (B,L,D):ISINLIVI – CHUGCHILANToday you will go hiking for approx. 4-5 hours. After breakfast we will prepare the hike by putting the luggage on good looking, healthy horses. It is a comfortable trek going up and down, walking along Toachi River by crossing hamlets and cultivate valleys. An opportunity to dive into the life of local people and to enjoy the lovely Andean landscapes. We will go down to the canyon and from here a three kilometer climb until to reach the adorable town of Chugchilán. This small town is surrounded by a rustic environment full of authenticity. In the afternoon you are able to walk its few blocks by yourself. DAY 3 (B,L,D):CHUGCHILAN – QUILOTOA – TIGUAAfter breakfast we will get ready for a full day of hiking, approx. 5-6 hours. If you are inexperienced, you might need more time. The hike will go down until we reach Rio Sihui. We will cross footbridges and pass small villages such as Guamaya town, a perfect place to admire the Canyon walls and its complex structure. After the long journey we will reach the loop of Quilotoa lake. You will be able to take many beautiful pictures of this volcanic crater filled by an exquisite, emerald colored lake. This is one of the best treks in this area because of the stunning views of the lake. If your physical condition is not well, there is also the option to hike around the lake instead of going down to the lake itself. This will take less physical effort. Afterwards a local pickup car will take you to an old but charming hacienda to spend the afternoon with a local indigenous family. You can watch them milking their cows, ride a llama or just enjoy the ambiance. DAY 4 (B):TIGUA – QUITO OR SOUTH OF ECUADORToday our private transportation will pick you up after breakfast to take you back to Quito or to drop you off at the Latacunga bus station to go to the south of Ecuador. It is optional to go to your final destination with a private car, just ask (Extra cost).

$2955.86 Outdoor Activities

12 DAYS ECUADOR CULTURE GROUP TOUR

DAY 1 (D) In the morning you will be visiting the colonial old town of Quito. After you will be visit the equator monument called Mitad del Mundo.  DAY 2 (B,L) You will do a 5 hour hike through the flora of the Andean highlands to explore the Cuicocha Crater. Later, you will visit the famous Otavalo market. DAY 3 (B,L) The train ride will start in Otavalo and will take you to Salinas, where you can explore the culture and history of the Afro-Ecuadorians.  DAY 4 (B,D)You will go to thermal baths of Papallacta. In the afternoon, you will arrive at a cozy lodge middle in a private protected forest. DAY 5 (B,L,D)You will have a hike through the protected rainforest. An expert from Pacari will show you how they make chocolate from local cacao beans. DAY 6 (B,L,D) Early in the morning, you and your guide will hop on a canoe along the Arajuno river to a clay lick to observe hundreds of parrots and parakeets. Then you will drive to a small town in the jungle called Misahualli for a typical Almuerzo. DAY 7 (B,D) After your breakfast, you will drive to an Animal Rescue Center in Puyo to see some tropical animals of the Amazon and to meet monkeys face to face. From here you will head deeper into the rainforest to eventually end up in Macas. Here you can relax in the afternoon in a nice hosteria. DAY 8 (B,L,D) You will viist the Shuar waterfall, where you will try to perform the waterfall ceremony of the Shuar.  DAY 9 (B,L) In the early morning, you will visit the Andean market of Guamote. After the market, you will explore the area and the small villages to have a better insight into the life of the Kichwa community. In the afternoon, you will be heading to Riobamba. * Upgrade option: Train ride over the Devil’s Nose:  After visiting the Guamote market you also have the choice to drive to a small train station of Alausi and do the famous train ride. (+ $ 90 p.p.)DAY 10 (B,L) Today, you will be heading to Riobamba to visit the Chimborazo volcano (6267 m). You will have a stop on 3000-meter altitude to visit the indigenous Kichwa community. From here you are able to hike to the Whymper refuge that is over 5000 meter in altitude. Later in the afternoon, you will be heading to Latacunga. DAY 11 (B,L,D) After breakfast, you will have a short drive to the village of La Victoria. Later, you will continue to the Andean market of Zumbahua. Here you can experience the noisy and chaotic market before you’ll head to the Quilotoa lagoon.  DAY 12 (B,L) You will explore the Cotopaxi National Park. Afterwards, you will have a lunch in the mountain refuge called Tambopaxi surrounded with the Sincholagua and Cotopaxi volcanos before heading back to Quito.