If you want to live a luxury experience in a Latin American country, Tren Ecuador will take you from the hightlands of the Andes to the coasts of the Pacific.
In Tren Crucero you can enjoy two luxury cars, decorated in two different styles: one Colonial and the other Republican. In addition to these cars, the convoy consists of a car bar, an open air terrace, two observation lounges and a gift shop car. All of them are guided by two types of machines, depending on the area: modern electric-diesel engines and old steam locomotives exquisitely restored.
In this comfortable train, in addition to enjoying the views and travel, you will get to know the local gastronomy and you will always find soft dinks, fresh-made juices, coffee, tea or snacks, sweet and savory. Some meals will be served on board, while others are part of the tours.
To sleep, we will always have a room in the best hotels or haciendas in the area.
At any time you will be accompanied by guides and waiters who will always be ready to answer any questions that may arise about the area or customs of the country.
We can not forget the excursions, in which you will enjoy the nature, know the ancestral customs of the indigenous communities, and all the heritage of this country, always from environmental and social responsibility.
Durán – Yaguachi – Naranjito – Bucay
We begin our trip to the Andes leaving Duran with a steam locomotive, which will take us to Yaguachi. Today we will travel through the plantations of pineapple, banana, rice and sugar cane of the fertile plains of the Ecuador coast until arriving at Naranjito. For lunch we will visit a typical hacienda of the coast, where we will taste the best cacao in the world and we will know the culture around its culture. After a show of Montubio culture we will continue our journey to Bucay where we will spend the night. If the weather allows, we can guess, in the distance, the high summits to which we will address tomorrow.
Bucay – Nariz del Diablo – Alausi – Colta – Riobamba
Today changing and surprising landscapes will delight us. From Bucay and, along the Chancán canyon, we will see how we leave behind the climate and the landscape of the coast to enter the hightlands. From the cloud forest we will change to the moor. At Pistishi lookout we will make a stop to photograph the Nose of the Devil, an almost vertical wall where the train will climb 450 meters in about 12 kilometers. From Alausí we will cross fields of quinoa sprinkled with native vegetation until arriving at Colta. Here we will visit the indigenous community of Palacio Real and learn about their traditions and way of life. We will finish our trip today in Riobamba where we can visit the Artisans’ Square before going to the hotel for dinner and rest.
Riobamba – Urbina – Boliche – Quito
From Riobamba we will go to Urbina, in the foothills of the Chimborazo volcano. There we will reach the highest point of our trip, we will meet the last ice merchant of this impressive mountain and visit its Artisans’ Square. We will continue north, crossing the Avenue of the Volcanoes. If the day is clear, during our tour we can spot up to 20 volcanoes. We will stop in Boliche, in the foothills of Cotopaxi volcano, to visit the Andean forest through a path. Back to the train, where we will have lunch, we will continue our journey until Quito, the capital of Ecuador. Here is where we will have dinner and spend the night.
Quito – Otavalo – Ibarra – Quito
In our last day in this special train we will make a circular tour to know the culture and traditions of this zone. We will depart at 6:30 am from the Swissôtel Quito to go to Otavalo, where the largest native market in South America is located. With our convoy, headed by a steam engine, we will visit San Roque, where we will enjoy traditional music and watch handloom weavers at work. In Andrade Marín we will visit the Imbabura Factory and taste the traditional cuisine. In San Antonio we will admire the art of wood carving. Today we will lunch at Hacienda La Compañía with its impressive plantation of roses. At the end of the day we will transfer to a hotel in Quito to spend the last night of our trip.
Tren Crucero does not offer accomodation on board, so the nights will always be spent in hotels or haciendas specially selected to maintain the level of comfort and the atmosphere lived in the train.
Hotel beds are standard queen-size.
In some hotels it is possible to stay in suites at an extra cost.
One of the cultural incentivesa per of this trip is to get to know the ancestral cuisine of Ecuador. Despite being a small country, its gastronomy is very varied, due to the existence of four different natural regions - coast, sierra, east and islands - with different customs and traditions.
During the tour you can try the typical dishes of each area that we pass by and enjoy the views of the large plantations of banana, sugar cane, rice, tropical fruits and quinoa crops.
Ecuador is the first exporter of banana, making this fruit a very important element in its gastronomy. It is also the eighth largest cacao producer in the world. You wil learn a lot about both products, its varieties and their use in the kitchen.
All meals are included during the trip, some will be done on board, and others during the tours. Non-alcoholic drinks, and savory and sweet snacks (we recommend the great variety of fresh fruit) are also available in the bar car at any time of the day free of charge. Do not miss our fresh-made juices on board.
nd if you have to follow a diet, we cn handle vegetarian, diabetic and vegan diets, and other restricted diets.
BEFORE THE TRAVEL
Preparing the suitcase
Although Ecuador has a very varied climate due to the diversity of its geography, there are only two marked season because of its equatorial location: a wet one, that goes from mid October until June, and another dry during the rest of the months. This makes the humidity and temperature very variable throughout the year, but temperatures are usually mild, except in mountain area. The altitude ranges from 80 meters to almost 3,610 meters above sea level.
This is why, we recommend that you prepare your suitcase with comfortable and light clothes, but do not forget warm clothes and a light coat for the rain. The best choice would be pack several layers, especially in the tours while travelling in the Andes hightlands, since the mornings and the nights are cold.
Being on the equator, you should not forget a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen (at least SPF 50+).
The footwear for the excursions must be comfortable and must be taken into account that, in some paths, it is possible that we find mud.
One last thing to note is that the train does not have a laundry service. It is available in hotels and haciendas, however, depending on the time of arrival, there may not be enough time to be able to use this service. We recommend taking this into account when preparing the suitcase.
The official currency of Ecuador is the US Dollar, so only this currency is accepted on board. Anyway, all mayor credit cards can be used without any problem.
Traveling with children
Although Tren Crucero admits children from 7 years old, our recommendation is not to travel with children under 10 years old, due to the characteristics of the journey. The most important point is that parents are responsible for their children behaviour, and this should not disturb at any time other travelers.
Travelers with special needs
We do not recommend the trip to people with reduced mobility because some excursions are through uneven terrain and do not have wheelchair accessible areas.
Also keep in mind that the train travels to a considerable altitude in the Andes area, reason why there are places where the levels of oxygen can be low. Keep it in mind if your health condition may become worse by these conditions.
In any case, Tren Ecuador is an inclusive company: passengers with special needs are welcome on board; nevertheless we strongly recommend that they travel accompanied.
It is not mandatory to vaccinate for yellow fever or malaria to go to Ecuador. Regarding Zika, all the confirmed cases have been on the north coast, an area we do not visit. The virus is unable to live over 2000 meters above sea level. In any case we recommend you consult your family doctor before making any trip.
DURING THE TRIP
Electricity and wifi
The voltage on the train is 220V AC 50Hz, with 3-point round-pronged wall plugs on every seat.
As for the wifi and the use of mobiles, as the objective of the trip is to disconnect travelers from the outside world to enjoy the breathtaking scenery, the train does not have radio or television cable or wifi. In addition, the crew may restrict the use of any device that may disturb other travelers during the journey. On the other hand, it should be noted that coverage can be poor or disappear in certain isolated areas.
Anyway, all hotels and haciendas have wifi.
To keep the train in perfect condition, every day it is cleaned when passengers go down to their lodgings, so they should always take their belongings.
For valuables and hand luggage, the train has a locker of 50cm x 40cm.
Smoking on board
Ecuadorian laws prohibit smoking in public areas, so you are not allowed to smoke on board, at stations or near railways.
Prices are based on € / $ change on 18 January. If this change is significantly modified, it will have repercussions, both upwards and downwards.
VAT not included.
I want to spend more time in Ecuador
If you want to stay longer in this fantastic country, there is the possibility of doing extensions in Quito and Guayaquil, before or after the trip by train. We also have programs to visit the incredible Galápagos Islands.
The trip includes transportation aboard Tren Crucero, as well as the meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) throughout the itinerary. Also non-alcoholic drinks and snacks on board unlimited. Guides in Spanish and English throughout the trip. The excursions included in the itinerary and the necessary transferss to realize them or to arrive at the lodging, that can be by bus or van. Accommodation in double rooms. In the hotels there is luggage service. In the route Quito to Guayaquil, when the train arrives to the station of Durán, there will be a transfer to a Hotel in Guayaquil for the last night. In this case, dinner is not included, but breakfast for the next day is included.
Alcoholic beverages on board are not included, but wine, beer and whiskey are available in the bar car. Nor do the meals or excursions not detailed in the program.
Taxes are also not included.
Neither air tickets nor transfers to hotels other than those specified.
Any personal expense are excluded.
Tips are neither included nor mandatory, although we suggest a discretionary daily amount from US$ 5 to US$ 10 per guest per day in recognition of the service offered.
Taxes not included.