Tour Itinerary & Costs
Day O: Arrival and transport to our hotel/ eco lodge in the Tumbaco valley just 20 minutes from the airport.
Day 1: After breakfast and introductions, the adventure begins as we travel to the area of Tandayapa, Mindo and the Choco Andino Biosphere, home to some of the most beautiful birds on the planet. On the way, we will stop at the Ecuator line for photos and to learn a bit about Ecuador at the Intinan museum. From there, we have three amazing birding stops along the way, each at a different altitude and each with unique species: Maraksacha, Armadillo ( where we will have lunch in the company of hummers) and Alambi reserve. We end the day at a lovely Birding Lodge in Tandayapa.
Day 2: Early morning birding on the trails or at the feeders, after which we will depart to see the unique species of the privately owned Amaguza Mashpi reserve and the last foothill forest, connecting to the subtropical western forests of the region. After lunch we will be on our way to Ecuador’s birding capital, Mindo, where we will stay 3 nights.
Day 3: Early morning departure to the famous Paz de las Aves Reserve, where Angel and Rodrigo Paz will show us elusive antipittas, cock of the rock and many other species. We will return to Mindo for lunch and in the afternoon, relax and watch birds at the birding garden of El Descano or….. for those who want a change of pace, a chocolate tour to see the process of chocolate making or a visit to the butterfly farm. Optional evening tours to see the nighttime life of the forest and with luck to spot an owl.
Day 4: A full day of birding at the MCF reserves of Milpe and Silanche. We begin at Rio Silanche a lower elevation protected forest , with a great trail system and observation tower. Lunch at El Mirador, with amazing views of the river and many birds. We will continue to Milpe, spending the afternoon at this slightly higher elevation reserve, considered one of the finest birding sites in all of Ecuador.
Day 5: An easy morning hike to see the birds of the Mindo Yellow House Trails. We then will travel via the old road to Quito also known as the paseo del quinde (or hummingbird route), stopping along the way to bird at several locations. We overnight in the charming village of Nono.
Day 6: After breakfast we will head high above the Nono valley, to the Zuroloma reserve, looking for high altitude species, including some additional antpittas. We then head to Quito for lunch in the botanical gardens where we will seek out iconic bird species that live in the capital. In the afternoon we will continue on to Antisana, where we will stay on the Secas lagoon, in a beautiful hotel where you can watch condors fly outside your room.
Day 7: A morning of birding in the Antisana area, visiting the Jocotoco Antisanilla reserve to sight condors and continuing to La Mica lake area. After lunch we will cross the continental divide, continuing on via the Papallacta pass and the western slope of the Andes, birding along the way. Late afternoon arrival to the Rio Quijos Ecolodge, where we will spend the next 2 nights.
Day 8: Birding in the transitional zone of Quijos, Baeza, Cosanga and the Guacamayos pass. Afternoon visit to a cock of the rock lek. Hotel: Rio Quijos
Day 9: Today we descend to the amazon, spending a full day looking for the lower elevation and amazon species. We will bird on the Loreto road and visit the Paikawe lake to see the famous Houtzins. Hotel: Archidona
Day 10: We ascend the Andes to Quito, stopping in the area of Papallacta, where there will be the option of either soaking in the Papallacta hot springs or birding in the adjacent Cayambe Coca reserve. Hotel: Quito
Day 11: Our last day, we will tour Quito’s Old town, its famous churches and historic center. We will also make a visit to the Artisan market to buy last minute gifts. Tour ends.
Our 2023 Tour Pricing:
$2200 p.p. based on double occupancy.
Add $300 for single supplement
January 8-18, 2023
June 7-17, 2023
October 4-14, 2023
What is included:
Airport pick up and transport to hotel.
11 nights of lodging in our comfortable hotels and lodges
Breakfast and lunch
Transportation in a comfortable roomy bus
Expert birding guide on the tour, with additional birding guides at certain spots.
Additional Bilingual guide and tour facilitator
Entrance fees to all the reserves
Entrance to Intinan museum, hotsprings.
Birding checklist to help you with identification.
Post trip list of birds sighted and photos.
What is not included:
Airfare to and from Ecuador
Tips for guide and driver
Dinner and snacks.We have left dinner open in order to provide flexibility and options for travelers.
Itinerary may vary due to weather, group input and factors outside of our control.