Highlights
  • Discover the beauty of the Andes Mountains
  • Ecuador's northern sierra region
  • Visit rural Andean villages
  • Explore Quito

Discover the beauty of the Andes Mountains and rich cultural heritage of Ecuador's northern sierra region on this active cultural exploration. Visit rural Andean villages known for hand made crafts, the world famous market at Otovalo and take a guided hike between rural indigenous villages. Accommodations include luxurious, centuries old haciendas, now converted into comfortable inns and living museums.

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6
AdventureSmith Travel Reviews & Ratings
100% Recommend

5.0 out of 5
Excellent 6 Great 0 Average 0 Disappointing 0 Terrible 0
Value
4.8 Guide
5.0 Activities
5.0 Lodging
5.0 Transportation
4.8 Meals
5.0
Andes Highland Haciendas

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C

Recommends

Watching whales up close, wonderful holiday on such a small vessel June 2018

5.0
  • Value 4.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
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  • Meals 5.0
Adventure Smith arranged this ltrip of a life time to The Sea of Cortez, Baja California aboard Westward..
Far away from people, so close up to wild life. Nothing was too much trouble for the crew of three on a boat holding max 12 people. Swimming with sea lions pups, whale sharks, five types of whales, kayaking, stand up paddle board, hiking in cactus islands, bird watching. This must be one of the smallest most personal cruises . Adventure Smith can tell you all the details and you will stil be surprised and delighted.
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Operator AdventureSmith

M

Recommends

A fun trip! August 2015

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
The folks at Adventuresmith make planning a trip almost as much fun as the trip itself. They enthusiastically and efficiently helped us create two different adventures that I felt they would be thrilled to go on themselves. It is always very satisfying to find people who love what they do and are eager to provide the best possible service for their customers.
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Operator AdventureSmith

LG

Recommends

Incredible trip to the Costa Rican jungle! August 2015

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
My family and I just returned from an incredible trip to the Costa Rican jungle with AdventureSmith. Our trip was well planned, flawless and felt very personalized. We stayed first at the Tortugero Lodge in Tortuguero and had a great experience seeing the jungle there. Our guides were very knowledgable and welcoming. The lodge was beautifully laid out, had amazing food and was situated nestled in the jungle so we could enjoy the sounds of the jungle while we slept in luxurious open air bungalows. We took boat tours of the jungle and got to kayak up small waterways so we had the crocodile eye view! Next we transferred to the Oso peninsula via a thrilling Cessna ride through clouds to stay at Lapa Ríos, another jungle lodge surrounded by monkeys. The guides here were also fun, knowledgable and great with the kids. Best hike was the waterfall hike. So much adventure on this vacation, we all slept great each night! This was our second trip with AdventureSmith and I can't wait to book our next. They really know how to set you up for exactly what you want, even if you don't know exactly what you want. Can't recommend them enough!
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Operator AdventureSmith

D

Recommends

Very happy with AdvetureSmith. August 2015

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
We've booked two trips through AdventureSmith and wouldn't consider any other company for our trips. The service we've received and the ease of the process have been great. I can't recommend the company highly enough.
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Operator AdventureSmith

SF

Recommends

HIGHLY, HIGHLY RECOMMEND! August 2015

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
I just got back from one of the easiest hassle-free vacations I’ve ever taken and it all started with a single call to Adventuresmith. They exceeded all of my expectations and a would use them again in a heartbeat. I had only a few weeks to plan a trip to the Galapagos that I’d promised my wife. I was pretty certain I’d procrastinated to the point that a trip – especially during Spring Break/Easter week wouldn’t even be possible without settling on quality or paying through the nose. I searched on line for “Galapagos tours” and came up with three companies that seemed to be able to do what I needed. It was after business hours but I needed to get things going so I called anyway, planning to leave a voicemail messages to start the process. One company never did call me back. Another called me back the next day and said “I don’t know if we can find anything for you but we’ll see what’s available and get back to you in a few days.” The third was Adventuresmith. About 10 minutes later, again, after business hours, I got a call from Andrew, one of Adventuresmith’s travel specialists. He asked me for the dates I could travel, the type of boat (luxury, moderate or economy) I was looking for and my budget. The next morning, which was a Saturday, I got an e-mail with a detailed list of available cruises. I used the Adventuresmith website to research the details of each ship – including deck plans and detailed photographs, itineraries and reviews. I didn’t find any other website that was as comprehensive or as easy to use. The following Monday, Andrew and I spoke by phone and he answered all of my questions about the different boats, the different itineraries, the anticipated weather and sea conditions, and much more. We narrowed the list to a couple of cruises and he went to work – callin g each company directly to check on availability rather than relying on e-mail or web-based reservation systems due to the last-minute nature of the trip. On Tuesday morning, he’d found an available cabin that met all of our expectations – the last available cabin – so he booked it for me and negotiated a 24-hour hold to be sure the price was okay with me and that I could get air reservations. He told me exactly how to arrange the travel days and times so I would have virtually no risk of problems from delayed or cancelled flights. On Wednesday, I e-mailed him that I’d found suitable air reservations and he had my trip confirmed within an hour or so. He reassured me that I’d chosen one of the few boats he could enthusiastically recommend which I found very comforting, given the expense of the trip. He told me he’d be the one coordinating all of my trip details from that point forward and that he would be available to me for any questions or problems, by phone or e-mail throughout the entire trip, right up to my return. He e-mailed me a bunch of articles about the Galapagos and how to get the most out of a trip there, and he sent very clearly and well-organized information about what to pack, what to expect, how to tip, and much more. He offered a very well priced land package that included hotel rooms for all over-night stop overs, transfers to and from hotels and airports with a private Spanish-speaking guide who would help us navigate immigration services, the airport, and hotel check-in, a guided tour of our stop-over city, buffet breakfasts, and round-trip airfare to and from the Galapagos islands from mainland Ecuador. He explained in detail the relative advantages and disadvantages of using Guayaquil vs. Quito as our stopover city in Ecuador. I could not possibly have matched the price of that package by arranging everything myself and I expended exactly zero effort to make it all happen. The trip ran like clockwork. We were perfectly prepared based on Adventuresmith’s expert write-ups for pre-trip planning, and had an extraordinary trip. It was, by far, the easiest trip I’ve ever arranged – basically two phone calls and an e-mail or two to Adventuresmith and the rest was done. We didn’t have a single issue or problem but it was very nice to know Adventuresmith provided 24/7 support if we did. I’ve never had a travel company offer that before.
After that very first contact I had with Adventuresmith, I started researching them online to be sure they were “real.” It all sounded a little too good to be true and I’d never heard of them before. It was surprising to find only a handful of reviews on line but all of them were positive. I assumed they were a pretty new venture but after asking Andrew about it, he told me about their many, many years in the specialty travel business and explained that their marketing presence is still limited on line but that they have always had a significant presence in travel magazines and travel publications. So let me tell you here and now that they are quite real, incredibly knowledgeable and professional, courteous and service-oriented. I will absolutely look to them again to help with travel in the future.
Bottom line: No need to look anywhere else. Just use these guys. I was thrilled to find them and you will be too!
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Operator AdventureSmith

Itinerary

Day 1: Andean Villages

Meals: Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Hacienda Cusin

Depart Quito early to visit the nearby villages of Peguche to observe traditional weaving, Calderon, known for its bread doll art, and Peguche which is known for its weaving and textiles. The relaxing drive allows you to enjoy spectacular Andean scenery. This afternoon visit nearby villages and hike to the Cuicocha Crater Lake. This evening drive to Hacienda Cusin, a restored 17th-century estate, in the nearby village of San Pablo. The hacienda offers a luxurious taste of Ecuador's colonial history among individually decorated rooms, gardens and courtyards.

Day 2: Otovalo Market & Imbabura Hike

Meals: Brerakfast Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Hacienda Zuleta

For hundreds of years indigenous people from over seventy surrounding villages have brought their crafts and produce to the world famous market in Otovalo. Here you can get involved in the excitement of bargaining and buying or merely photograph native textiles, flowers, fruits, vegetables, and pottery arranged in colorful displays. A short drive from Otovalo leads to the outskirts of San Pablo Village and Lake where indigenous Ecuadorian farms adorn the hillsides. Begin a three hour guided hike between villages where you can meet local people working in the fields, see their crafts and learn about traditional Quecha Indian culture. (A road connects the villages so you can hike part way or ride if you wish.) Pass under the shadow of the Imbabura volcano as you descend into a fertile agricultural valley. Conclude the hike at another traditional ranch called the Hacienda Zuleta. Originally built in 1690 the hacienda is the only working hacienda remaining in Ecuador. This evening dine with members of the Plaza-Lasso family, owners and caretakers of the hacienda for over 100 years. Overnight Hacienda Zuleta.

Day 3: Hacienda Zuleta

Meals: Breakfast Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Hacienda Zuleta

Today the history of Zuleta can be experienced throughout the Hacienda. The ranch is a showcase of progressive sustainable agriculture, ranching and industry in harmony with its natural and cultural surroundings. While at Zuleta you can enjoy a wonderful array of activities (at added cost) within the private 1800 hectare property. Miles of meandering mountain roads and trails make Zuleta an oasis for horseback riding, mountain biking, and hiking. Archaeological tours of the Caranqui Pyramids take you back in time to when the Zuleta valley was populated by ancient civilizations. The working farm itself offers a variety of entertaining possibilities with a trout farm, cheese factory, dairy farm and many other activities. Guests are also invited to visit the Gallo Plaza Foundation's projects which include the women's community embroidery project and the condor repopulation project. Dinner and overnight at Hacienda Zuleta.

Day 4: Mitad del Mundo

Meals: Breakfast

A final morning at the Hacienda before returning to Quito. Along the way stop at the Mitad del Mundo equatorial Monument located on the equator. Arrive Quito early afternoon and transfer to your hotel.

Dates & Pricing

Price From

$ 1,845

Price Per Day:

$ 461 per day
 
  • Deposit Price: $ 500
  • Single Supplement (Single Occupancy): $ 1,350

Pricing Details (2016) :

Triple Occupancy: $1995

Double Occupancy: $2295

Prices may vary due to local taxes and trip seasonality. Click "Request Info" to inquire directly with the tour operator for the final trip price.
Details
Trip Includes
  • Transportation
  • Accommodations
  • Local guides
  • Entrance fees
  • And meals as specified in itinerary
Trip Excludes
  • Airfare to Ecuador
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Taxes and port fees
  • Quito airport international departure tax
  • Gratuities to Naturalist Staff and crew
  • Items of a personal nature such as alcoholic beverages
  • And insurance of any kind
Optional Activities

Grace Galapagos Cruises From: $6100; 8 days

 

The 16-guest yacht Grace was a wedding gift from Aristotle Onassis to Prince Rainier and Princess Grace of Monaco, and it was on board this vessel where they spent their honeymoon getaway. Cruise back in time and lay back in luxury and romance as you enjoy one of the finest cruises available in the Galapagos Islands.

Ecuador Amazon Adventure From: $1155; 4 days

Explore the incredible diversity and wildlife of the Amazon from one of our exceptional wilderness lodges. Daily hikes and paddles, led by expert resident guides, explore canopy platforms, parrot licks and rainforest wildlife.

Mashpi - Rainforest Tour From: $1,523; 3 days

Mashpi Biodiversity Reserve is located in one of the most important global “hot spots” of biodiversity: the Tumbez-Chocó-Darién. Considered one of the richest on Earth, it features an exceptionally high level of endemism, which the Mashpi Lodge features year-round access and activities amongst

Meals Included:

3 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches and 3 Dinners

Flights & Transport
Only ground transport
Start City
Quito
End City
Quito
Cancellation Policy:

Payment & Cancellation

In order to confirm this trip, a deposit of $500 is required at the time of booking. A Reservation Form, which includes a release of liability, must be completed and signed by all travelers. The balance of the trip price is due 90 days before the departure date. Guests who must cancel their trip for any reason must do so in writing. Cancellations are subject to the following fees, based on number of days prior to departure:

Up to 91 days - 50% of deposit

90 to 31 days - 50% of total trip cost

30 to 0 days - 100% of total trip cost

Age Notes

Families & Children

The Amazon rainforest is a wonderful place for family travel. Minimum age for the Ecuador Amazon Adventure is 5 years old. Children 5-12 years old receive a 30% discount when sharing with parents.

Min. Age: 5

Additional Information:

Travel Insurance

Protect your travel investment with insurance. Our partners at Travelex Insurance offer a variety of plans and policies to fit every trip and budget. You must purchase your travel insurance policy within 21 days of booking your trip for it to cover pre-existing medical conditions.

Families & Children

The Amazon rainforest is a wonderful place for family travel. Minimum age for the Ecuador Amazon Adventure is 5 years old. Children 5-12 years old receive a 30% discount when sharing with parents.

Reservations

All persons wishing to make a reservation, and all persons who will be traveling, must complete and sign the Traveller Information Form. All reservations are made with Adventure Smith Travel Services Inc., d/b/a Adventure Smith Explorations. No person has any authority on Adventure Smith Explorations’ behalf to vary these terms and conditions.

Travel Documents

The client must obtain and have possession of a valid passport, all visas, permits and certificates, and vaccination certificates, required for the entire tour. The client accepts responsibility for obtaining these documents and any other necessary documents. It is the client’s responsibility to assure that the name on your airline ticket, cruise tickets, or any other travel documents matches your name as printed in your passport (or domestic identification, where applicable) by providing the exact name as it appears on your passport (or domestic identification, where applicable) to AdventureSmith Explorations before tickets are issued.

 

Trip level I

Our level one trips are designed for travellers interested in lodge and hotel accommodations combined with mild activities, plenty of flexibility and options for more rigorous activity. Expect two to four hours of activity each day over straightforward terrain. Travellers should be comfortable hiking or walking 3-5 miles per day. Other level one activities include snorkelling or sea kayaking sheltered waters and river rafting class I-II water. Expedition Cruising aboard small ships and yachts is level one and may include fun and easy activities such as hiking, snorkelling and kayaking. Enjoying a relaxed pace with a focus on nature, culture and history is often a priority for those who choose this trip level.

Trip ID#: andhigadv

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