Planning for Ecuador was easier than Alaska for sure, but also more challenging due to conflicting information online & lack of information. The bike rental was easy from Ecuador Freedom Bike Rental. They will provide us with a bike, GPS, hotel arrangements each night & a couple of activities along the way. They will also suggest other things to see and do once we arrive at the rental shop.
We are taking their 12 day self guided tour which is Introduction to Ecuador. Below is the basic trip schedule:
Dec. 30, 2017 Depart KC for Ecuador on Delta. (Flights are expensive to Ecuador.)
Dec. 31, 2017 Morning private guided tour of Quito. Afternoon walk the Ave. Rio Amazones & then a roof top dinner.
Jan.1, 2018 Private day tour to Cotopaxi National Park
Jan. 2, 2018 Pick up our bikes for day 1 of riding! We will be out on the bikes for 12 days. We will ride 10 days & have 2 days to explore locally. We’ll only cover about 1,600 miles so most days are less than 200 mile rides. Typically we have some pretty long ride days to get out of the Midwest, this time we just spent 12 hours traveling via car & plane. You can check out the link above for our riding schedule. We will learn more details when we arrive at Freedom!
Jan. 15, 2018 Arrive home.
The challenging part of planning this trip is that some places do not seem to have websites. I have purchased a couple of books and have found conflicting information online & in the books about nearly every topic I have researched. I ended up calling the hotel in Banos to try and schedule excursions about 6 weeks ago & he said to just call back around Jan. 1. No worries!
We have found a bunch of cool things to do, so although we haven’t bought any tickets for things outside of Quito, we will be bungee jumping between bridges, paragliding, surfing, taking a trip up the Amazon river, visiting a city full of monkeys, visiting the Ecuador Swing, and heading through Avenue of the Volcanoes & experiencing heights of up to 16,000 feet!
Packing has been a bit challenging because we will be high in the mountains where it is cool & probably rainy some of the time, but we will also have quite a few days on the beach before moving into the jungle.
I used Viator to book our private tours in Quito. For the cost difference we decided against taking a group tour.
After quite a bit of research we decided to rent an apartment from Southwest.com. It’s 2 bedroom, 2 bath and within walking distance to Plaza Foch, which seemed to be where some of the new years festivities would be. We have a single night hotel near the bike rental shop the evening we return. Rent is inexpensive here compared to other places we have traveled.