Andes Overland

Quito – Bogota Comfort

  • Otavalo 4
  • Otavalo 1
  • Quito 2 (3)
  • Villa Vieja 1
  • Armenia 6
  • 12 12-6 Colombia-Manizaes...Venecia Coffee Farm to Medellin 049
  • Bogota day 2-1
  • 2000-01-01 03.37.23

This Andes Overland journey takes us to the most beautiful cities and villages in the Andes. We learn about the history and the indigenous culture of the two countries. The adventure starts in Quito, where we can admire the colonial architecture of the old center. Then we go up north, to Otavalo to visit the famous handicraft market, before we cross the border to neighboring country Colombia. We travel from South Colombia through the coffee region to Armenia. The route continues passing various small villages, the city of Medellin and eventually we arrive at the great capital Bogota. Here we spend our last days to enjoy the wonderful neighborhoods of this crazy city.

Note: The optional excursions are mentioned  at the end of a day in the itenerary . You can find more information on all optional excursions on the page: Optional Excursions

Itinerary

Arrival Quito / Day 1
We have just arrived in the highest capital city of the world! If you have not arranged your transfer with us you can order a cab to get to the hotel! Once arrived at the hotel you meet your fellow travelers and guide during the briefing at 17:00pm. Except for the briefing we did not plan anything for today, it is important to get a good rest and acclimatize at this high altitude.
Quito City tour! / Day 2
Today we are going to see with our own eyes why Quito was one of the first cities declared as World Cultural Heritage by UNESCO. You can go discover this by yourself or you let us guide you through the ancient streets of the historical centre before we take you to the middle of the world. Optional Excursion: Quito city tour & Mitad del Mundo
Quito - Otavalo / Day 3
The journey is heading further north as we drive early in the morning to the indigenous capital of Otavalo. The city is approximately 2 hours north of Quito on the Panamerican Highway. It has about 50.000 inhabitants and it is the capital of the canton with the same name. Otavalo is world-famous for its indigenous population, the so-called Otavalos. Many of them are travelling around the world to sell their beautifully made handicrafts or they play in Andean Folk music groups. The Otavalos are considered the economically most successful indigenous group of Latin America. In the afternoon we have organized an excursion to the Cuicocha Lake & Cotacachi Village which is included!
Train ride to Salinas / Day 4
Today we go on a beautiful train ride, we pass some incredible Andean landscapes before we get to Salinas where we stop and get off the train to get to know this little village and to watch the local dance show. After, we continue our trip along the mighty Imbabura until we reach the peaceful hosteria Pantavi where we spend the night.
Hello Colombia! / Day 5
This is our last day in this lovely small Latino country. Today we included a nice excursion to the Chota Valley! The city inhabited by the Afro - Ecuadorian community offers visitors the best of their traditions with its lively music and dances. After the excursion we continue our trip to Tulcan, the border town to Ecuador’s big neighboring country Colombia. Unfortunately this is the moment we have to say goodbye to our Ecuadorian guide, but we also welcome a new one from Colombia. Now, our Colombian adventure begins! Together with our new guide and driver we continue our travel to Pasto, where our hotel is located.
Exploring Popayan / Day 6
We wake up on Colombian grounds to continue our travel up north. Early in the morning we travel to Popayan by our private transport. Popayan is also known as the white city. We arrive around midday in Popayan, where first we go to the hotel to leave our luggage. The rest of the day we have free time to discover Popayan and enjoy its colonial architecture. This place is famous for its Easter Week Religious celebrations. Another thing that makes this city special, is the underground wiring, due to the reconstruction that took place after an earthquake which destroyed almost the whole city in the 1980’s. Popayan is the only Colombian city constructed this way.
From Popayan to San Agustin / Day 7
Do you get car sick easily? Then we advise you to take your medicine before we hit the road! Today we drive on some of the most uncomfortable roads of the country. The highway to San Agustin is not paved for most of its parts and riding here is, let’s say, a very special experience. We climb up high into the mountains finding our way down over rivers and up again until we see the first coffee fields close to our destination. Upon arrival in San Agustin we drive to hotel Yuma, where our overnight stay takes place. San Agustin’s heritage and its foremost point of interest are the archaeological sites that are scattered around the unpaved mountain streets. The more recent history of the area is coined by the citizens that are in close contact to Colombia’s cocaine industry. Our guide probably knows some stories from this epoch. It is not forbidden to ask him, it might bring up some outdated images.
San Agustin / Day 8
Today we are going to visit the archaeological park of San Agustin.The park is one of the Unesco´s World Heritage Sites in Colombia and the main Archeological site in the country. After our visit you have the rest of the day off to explore the surroundings. Tonight we stay another night in hotel Yuma.
San Augustin / Day 9
Today you have another free day to spend unless you choose to participate in the awesome horseback riding tour that we offer as optional excursion. Tonight is our last night in Hotel Yuma. Optional Excursion: Horseback riding tour to the Rio Magdalena Canyon.
Off to Villa Vieja / Day 10
Today we are leaving San Agustin to continue the trip to Villa Vieja, a little desert town. We drive directly to our hotel to leave our luggage and maybe take some rest. Today you will have free time to explore the village and its surroundings.
Villa Vieja / Day 11
We wake up in the small desert town of Villa Vieja, known for its high temperatures. Today we organized an excursion to the Tatacoa desert known as one of Colombia's most attractive natural landscapes. Tonight we will stay on more night at Villa Vieja!
Villa Vieja - Armenia / Day 12
Today we travel to Armenia, where we arrive in the afternoon. We spend the night in Finca La Tata which is surrounded by forest and beautiful plants. In this peaceful place we rest and enjoy the last sunbeams of the day.
Armenia / Day 13
On our first free day in Armenia we get to chance to visit the gorgeous surroundings of this town. The excursion of today takes us to Salento & Cocora Valley. Cocora, on Salento's doorstep is is a majestic valley and the perfect place to "lose yourself" for a few hours. The valley is home to the wax palm, the national tree of Colombia and the worlds tallest variety of palm tree, measuring up to 60m.
Visiting coffee plantations! / Day 14
Today we have a guided tour through the famous Colombian coffee plantations. Here, we learn all about the famous Colombian coffee. What makes Colombian coffee so famous and tasteful? Let’s find out! At night we stay in the same finca as the night before.
Armenia - Manizales / Day 15
In the morning we drive to Manizales which is located close to Armenia. Here, we can wander around in the mountainous and vibrant city of Manizales which is located in the north of the coffee delta.
Manzales - Medellin / Day 16
Today we travel to Medellin. The name of the city might remind you of the drug wars in the 80’s and the head of the drug cartels, Pablo Escobar, but no worries that is all in the past! A lot has changed and now Medellin is a huge melting pot of multicultural influences from all over the world reflecting a super-diverse portfolio of events, activities, foods and culture. At Parque Lleras we find the craziest, yet most creative people. Since Medellin is a gateway to the remote pacific coast, we also get in touch with the interesting afro-south American and indigenous cultures.
Medellin / Day 17
Today you have a free day to discover Medellin. You can join us on the optional city tour or you can discover the city by yourself. Afterwards we spend another night in the bustling city of Medellin. Optional excursion: City tour Medellin.
Flight to Bogota! / Day 18
After breakfast we continue our trip by taking a taxi to the airport to catch our flight to the crazy capital city of Colombia, Bogota. Bogotá is the biggest Metropolis and capital of Colombia right in the middle of the Andean plateau. For tourists the city can be separated in two important areas: there is the old Candelaria Historic District with colonial houses and the government buildings and then there is the modern Bogotá more up to the north where we find all sort of shops, restaurant and bars surroundend by brick constructions. In this marvellous city we spend our night.
City tour Bogota / Day 19
We got the chance to get used to the altitude again which means we are totally ready to learn all about this beautiful busy capital. Our local guide picks us up after breakfast for our city tour afoot through the center of Bogota. Optional excursion: City tour Bogota.
The end? / Day 20
Today is already the last day of our Andean adventure through Ecuador and Colombia and it is time to say goodbye. We hope you enjoyed it! Though, we hope even more you continue the journey with us heading to the north of Colombia.

Included

  • 1. English Speaking local guide throughout the journey
  • 2. Accommodation based on Double rooms including breakfast
  • 3. Private transport throughout the journey
  • 4. National flight Medellin - Bogota
  • 5. Excursion to archaeological park of San Agustin, Tatacoa desert, Salento, Cocora Valley, Chota Valley, Coffee experience & Cuichocha lake and Cotacachi Village

Not Included

  • 1. Not mentioned meals, personal expenses, extras and tips
  • 2. Additional services or optional excursions
  • 3. International flight tickets

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  • Andes Overland will depart from 1 July 2015 onwards.
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