Thursday 15 August 2013

Adventures in Banos, Ecuador

Banos, Ecuador, nicknamed "Gateway to the Amazon" is a town full of adventures.  Home to more than 60 natural waterfalls, it's no wonder the natural beauty of the city attracts tourists from around the world.

While in Quito, we booked two tours in advance with Imagine Ecuador: Rock climbing and Canyoning.  With fun and humerous guides, safe equipment, and restaurant lunches, they provided great memories for us.

Note: Buses from Quito to Banos take a bit over 3.5 hours, so plan your trip accordingly!

On arrival on Day 1, we did a half day 2pm tour to climb the Andes Mountains! At the Natural Lava Rock, we spent an hour and a half climbing, but that was more than enough to give us enough bumps and bruises.

On Day 2, we headed off to Rio Blanco for a few hours of repelling down 6 waterfalls!  Imagine Ecuador describes the canyoning tour as "Negotiate your way down steep canyons by abseiling and jumping waterfalls and cliffs, cascading down natural chutes and swimming through crystal clear pools. 80% of the time is spent in the water." Yes!

The beauty was that the waterfalls were so remote, there was no way to hike or drive to them - the only way to see them was to jump off one leading to the other!  Amazingly captivating, this was my favorite activity on the trip (albeit it was freezing and scary!). 

Having a blast rocking climbing the Natural Lava Rock of the Andes Mountains

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