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

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 Cultural & Theme Tours

Quilotoa Hiking Private 3-Day Tour with Local Communities

ItineraryDay 1: Local Traditional Markets Pujili or SaquisilíStop At: Mercado Indigena, Saquisili, Cotopaxi ProvinceThe Saquisili Market is a bustling weekly market in the Cotopaxi Province of Ecuador. Every Thursday, vendors from all over the highlands come to the market to sell their wares and show of the product of their labors. The colorful blend of textiles, heaping piles of produce, and local people in traditional Andean clothing with black fedoras is a sight to behold.While the Otavalo Market is recently geared more towards tourists passing through, the Saquisili Market caters to locals who come from the highlands to buy pots and pans, electronics, herbal remedies, livestock or produceDuration: 2 hoursMeals included: • LunchAccommodation 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: • LunchAccommodation 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 hoursNo meals included on this day.No accommodation included on this day.

$70 Cultural & Theme Tours

Quilotoa Excursión de un día - (Tour Económico)

ItineraryThis is a typical itinerary for this productPass By: Laguna Quilotoa, Latacunga, Cotopaxi ProvinceExplore 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.

$739 Multi-day & Extended Tours

Cuenca to Quito via Avenue of the Volcanos Tour

Day 1: Cuenca – Ingapirca – Alausi: From Cuenca we’ll travel 48 miles north direction to the Ingapirca archaeological site, it’s the largest Incan ruins in Ecuador which encapsulates the sophisticated Inca culture. You’ll discover how, the Incas merged their own community with the Cañaris, native indigenous. This is reflected in the two separate Temples of the Moon and Sun, dedicated to the beliefs of each culture. After a stop for lunch, you’ll continue to the Nizag community near Alausi. Here we will do a half a hour hike to enjoy the unique landscape.DAY 2: Devil's Nose Train – Chimborazo – Riobamba: Experience two of the most interesting attractions in Ecuador. At 8:00am you'll board "The Devil’s Nose". In its day it was considered one of the greatest feats of railroad engineering that the world had seen. Then we will visit Chimborazo refuge, from where you can take a one-hour hour hike up to the second refuge nearly 16,000 feet (4,875 m.a.s.l) . It's also a great opportunity to do mountain bike activities down the slopes of Chimborazo to outings around rural villages along backroads, ranging from beginners to advance bikers (Optional activity with extra cost)DAY 3: Baños – Waterfalls Route - Tree house: After a half an hour drive, we will take a short hike to visit the "Treehouse" where the National Geographic photo contest winner was taken.Then we will continue our drive for about 45 min, making several stops along the waterfalls route, before reaching “Pailon del Diablo” waterfall. After a two km hike we will reach this magical place, one of the top ten largest waterfalls found in Ecuador.DAY 4: Baños - Quilotoa Lake - Latacunga area: In the morning we leave Baños and drive to Quilotoa, we will have the opportunity to enjoy the spectacular views of the Andes, Quilotoa lake and the colorful landscape of the moors that surround it. Upon arrival you can descend to the edge of the Crater Lake and return on horseback, or simply take a walk around the rim, and then get to know the lively local communities. In order to get in touch with local communities, a visit to a local indigenous market will be included depending on the week day. Contact us for more details about market days.DAY 5:  Cotopaxi - Drop off in Quito: Cotopaxi Volcano it's second highest peak in the country and adorns the Cordillera Real of the Ecuadorian Andes. We will enter the Cotopaxi National Park for a close encounter with the Paramo biodiversity and an ecological explanation of its importance. After a short hike around Limpiapungo lake, we let the adventure begin! We will continue to the parking lot (4500 m.a.s.l) in order to ascend  the First Refugee of the volcano (4810 m.a.s.l). You can rest and eat some hot soup at the refugee or continue the ascent to the Glaciers (depending on weather conditions). After a long day, we head to Quito.