An all-day train excursion takes you from Durán to Yaguachi and on to Bucay, 88km east of Guayaquil, through banana, sugar cane and pineapple plantations (hence its name, the 'sweetness train'). Once in Bucay, you'll have about four hours of free time, which you can spend on a range of outdoor activities.
Tour operators meet the train in Bucay and provide you with options for horse riding, mountain biking and visiting waterfalls (you can even rappel down them) – all of which cost extra. The return journey happens by bus, and you'll arrive back in Guayaquil around 5:30pm. It's a bit touristy (a dance troupe puts on a show at Bucay station), but still an enjoyable outing that's popular with Ecuadorian travelers. A taxi to the start of the trip in Durán should cost around $8 from the city center. Tickets are sold from the vintage train car on the malecón.