Recognized as the “Leading Luxury Train in South America” in 2017, you can experience the wonders of Ecuador on board the Tren Crucero (“Cruise Train”). The outcome of a quarter of a billion-dollar national railroad investment, upscale Ecuadorian trains carry passengers across the country between various destinations in the Andes and as far as the coast (traveling between Quito and Guayaquil). The most stunning in vintage transportation, some of the legs of this journey use restored wagons from 20th-century steam locomotives. The classic train will take you on an exceptional voyage snaking through various locales and ages of the Ecuadorian past and present. All of these convoys feature four different coaches, each with its own thematic style reflecting Ecuador’s history and culture. Upon your arrival at the first train station, a professional crew will await you with the warmest welcome and will accompany you throughout the journey, offering unmatched service to you and the other 53 guests aboard. Top hotels at every stop have been carefully chosen to provide you with the comfort, attention and service you require on this exquisite journey. All meals are served in local restaurants or in the hotels where you will spend the night, though two of the train’s wagons have tables and chairs, like a dining car, where light snacks and drinks are served.

Highlights

Otavalo, San Roque, Andrade Marin, San Antonio, Ibarra, Urbina, Riobamba, The Devil’s Nose, Bucay, Guayaquil

Itinerary Details

Quito – Otavalo – San Roque – Andrade Marin – San Antonio – Ibarra – Quito

AM: 6:30 am: Departure from Hotel in Quito (Quito-Otavalo/Ibarra-Quito by tourist bus, Otavalo-Ibarra by steam engine) San Roque: Music and textile weaving encounter Andrade Marin: Visit to the Imbabura Textiles Museum San Antonio: Woodcarvers Cayambe: Rose nursery and lunch Return trip to Quito, dinner and night We depart Quito early in the morning for a 1-1/2 hour drive north to the town of Otavalo (the home of a millenary market), where a carefully restored steam engine awaits us. As the locomotive makes several stops along the way, you can discover the many wonders hidden in this part of the country, including the musicians, painters, weavers and the skillful woodcarvers who keep the renowned “Quito School” art style alive. After tasting traditional Andean cuisine and visiting a very special export-class rose plantation, we will return to Quito.

PM:

AM: 6:30 am: Departure from Hotel to Quito’s Chimbacalle Train Station Andean forest trail in El Boliche natural recreational area Lunch on board your train Urbina: Artisans’ Square and meeting with the “Last ice merchant of Chimborazo” Dinner and spend the night in Riobamba We will board our train at Quito’s Chimbacalle Station and begin our journey south along the “Avenue of Volcanoes,” where (if the weather permits) you can spot up to twenty volcanoes from the train. Along the way, the Andes range splits into two arms that run parallel towards the south. The fertile valley trapped between these mountainous walls hosts a treasure trove of biodiversity. From the comfort of our panoramic wagons, you can witness the changes in vegetation and landscape as we slowly climb the Andean highlands to reach the town of Urbina, the highest point in our itinerary, at 11,800 feet above sea level. At the foot of Mount Chimborazo, we will meet the last ice-merchant and learn the story of his ancestral trade.

PM:

AM: Travel from Riobamba to Colta by steam engine Stop in Guamote: Visit an ancestral Andean market Lunch on board your train Alausi: Devil’s Nose descent and Pistishi Lookout Bucay: Dinner and spend the night This morning we will head out for the city of Riobamba and then Colta, where the Spanish conquistadors built their first settlement in Ecuador. We will cross colorful quinoa fields painted in purples, yellows and reds, alternating with endemic species of plant and wildlife, indigenous settlements and the remains of ancient cultures. We will also visit the Guamote market (one of the last indigenous markets in the Andes), before continuing south towards the legendary “Devil’s Nose” pass. A vertiginous descent of 450 meters zigzags to takes us from the Andean highlands down to the coastal plains. We will continue our descent along the narrow Chancchan River gorge and cross an impressive cloud forest towards the temperate city of Bucay.

PM:

AM: Travel from Yaguachi to Duran by steam engine Cocoa and chocolate tasting at a hacienda Montubio culture exhibition Complimentary transfer to selected hotels in Guayaquil The landscape changes again as the train leaves the tropical forest behind and plantations of rice, sugar cane, pineapple and bananas pass before your eyes. We will have lunch at a traditional hacienda, where we can learn about the growing and harvesting of the world’s best cocoa beans -- you'll even have a chance to taste the homemade chocolate. Later, the steam engine makes its way across the fields

PM:

AM: After breakfast at your hotel (included), your trans-Andean locomotive journey will conclude.

PM:

Prices

Gold Class (Single)

USD$ 2722

Gold Class (Double)

USD$ 2322

Luxury Class (Single)

USD$ 2082

Luxury Class (Double)

USD$ 1735

Included in the price

  • Transportation aboard the Tren Crucero
  • Accommodations based on double occupency
  • All meals during the trip
  • Snacks and soft drinks on board the train
  • Guide services in Spanish and English*
  • Excursions, as indicated in the itinerary
  • Transportation by bus/van during the program for excursions, and accommodations based on double occupancy
  • On the Quito to Guayaquil route, once the train has arrived at Duran station (Guayaquil), transfers are provided on a shared basis to the Wyndham (Santa Ana) hotel.

 

(*) Guide services in languages other than Spanish and English (including Italian, French, German, Portuguese and Japanese) can be sought upon request, though these are subject to the availability of guides and are provided at an additional cost.

Not included in the price

  • Taxes
  • Alcoholic beverages (Tren Crucero offers wine, beer and whiskey)
  • Meals not indicated in the itinerary
  • Excursions not indicated in the itinerary
  • Flights
  • Personal expenses
  • Gratuities
  • Transfers to hotels different from those listed in the itinerary
  • Travel insurance (highly recommended)

Duran – Yaguachi – Naranjito – Bucay

AM: 8:00 a.m. departure from Duran by steam engine Cocoa plantation, chocolate tasting and visit to Hacienda in Naranjito Lunch Presentation of Montubio culture Stop at Bucay for dinner and to spend the night We depart from Duran in the coast (near Guayaquil) early in the morning, as our heritage convoy is pulled by a vintage steam engine. We switch engines in Yaguachi and continue past rice, sugar cane, banana and pineapple plantations to the village of Naranjito. Lunch is served in a traditional hacienda, where we will learn about the finest cocoa beans in the world and taste home-made chocolate. After a demonstration of Montubio culture, we will continue our trip to Bucay. If the day is clear, we will get tour first glimpse of the Andes in the distance.

PM:

AM: Crossing Chanchan River gorge Pistishi lookout and Devil’s Nose pass Lunch on board your train Visit the Palacio Rea indigenous community Dinner and spend the night in Riobamba ​​ As we travel along the Chanchan River canyon, the vegetation and temperature change abruptly. The cloud forest clears and the sparse vegetation of the highlands appear, as the stone mountain walls of the Andes loom in the horizon. The train makes a stop at the Pistishi lookout, where we can get a good glimpse of the impressive feat of engineering ahead of us before we start the daunting climb up the legendary Devil’s Nose pass. After a 450 meter climb in barely 12 kilometers of dizzying zigzagging, the train finally reaches the quaint Andean village of Alausi. We will continue our journey to Riobamba, crossing colorful fields of quinoa. On the way, in Colta we will visit the indigenous community of Palacio Real, where we learn about llama breeding. We will later arrive in Riobamba pulled by a powerful steam engine and with time to visit the Artisans’ Square Train Station before heading to your hotel.

PM:

AM: Urbina: Artisans’ Square, meeting with the last ice-merchant of Chimborazo Breakfast on board your train Boliche recreational area near Cotopaxi National Park and volcano: Andean forest trail Quito: Dinner and spend the night This morning we will head out for Urbina, the highest point in our itinerary, at 3,600 meters above sea level. There, on the eastern flanks of Chimborazo Volcano, the last ice-merchant will be waiting to tell the tale of his ancestral trade. Then, we will ride north along the “Avenue of Volcanoes,” the fertile valley sheltered between the two arms of the Andes mountain range. On clear days, you can spot up to 20 volcanoes from the comfort of your seat. On the outskirts of the Cotopaxi Volcano, we will explore a singular Andean forest trail before continuing our ride to Quito to discover its UNESCO-declared World Heritage historic district.

PM:

AM: 6:30 Departure from Quito’s Hotel Otavalo Station: departure by steam engine San Roque: Music and loom weavers Andrade Marín: Sampling traditional cuisine and a visit to Imbabura textile factory San Antonio: the art of woodcarving Lunch: Hacienda La Compañía Return trip to Quito and end of our services Duran-Yaguachi, Colta-Riobamba, Otavalo-Ibarra by steam engine Quito-Otavalo/Ibarra-Quito by bus-Quito Swissôtel Our journey for the continues to the northern Andes. In Quito, we will board the train pulled by a lovingly restored steam engine to travel to Otavalo, home to a millenary market. In that town, you will discover the culture, traditions, music, cuisine, paintings and the antique skill of woodcarving, learned from the renowned masters of the "Quito School" of art that dates back to the 17th century. After having lunch in a unique hacienda, we will head back to Quito, where you will spend the night at the hotel.

PM:

AM: After breakfast at your hotel (included), your incredible trans-Andean locomotive journey will conclude.

PM:

Prices

Gold Class (Single)

USD$ 2722

Gold Class (Double)

USD$ 2322

Luxury Class (Single)

USD$ 2082

Luxury Class (Double)

USD$ 1735

Included in the price

  • Transportation on board the Tren Crucero
  • Accommodations on a double occupency basis
  • All meals during the trip, as per the itinerary
  • Snacks and soft drinks on board the train
  • Guide services in Spanish and English*
  • Excursions, as per the itinerary
  • Transportation by bus/van during the program for excursions, and accommodations based on double occupancy.
  • On the Quito to Guayaquil route, once the train has arrived at Duran station (Guayaquil), transfers are provided on a shared basis to the Hilton (airport), Oro Verde (downtown) & Wyndham (Santa Ana) hotels

(*) Guide services in languages other than Spanish and English (including Italian, French, German, Portuguese and Japanese) can be sought upon request, though these are subject to the availability of guides and are provided at an additional cost.

Not included in the price

  • Taxes
  • Alcoholic beverages (Tren Crucero offers wine, beer and whiskey)
  • Meals not indicated in the itinerary
  • Excursions not indicated in the itinerary
  • International and domestic flights
  • Personal expenses
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Transfers to hotels different from the ones listed in the itinerary
  • Travel insurance (highly recommended)

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Trip Advisor Reviews

star rating  Todo solucionado. Gran servicio.  - Muy buen servicio, muy personalizado, atendiendo todos los detalles de nuestras necesidades, tanto programadas como las que aparecían sobre la marcha. Gran amabilidad de todos los representantes de la organización con quien tuvimos contacto. Definitivamente muy recomendable.

avatar thumb Agirbal
April 5, 2023

star rating  Desde el primer contacto respondieron con solvencia y responsabilidad. A la hora de prestar el servicio se añadio puntualidad y cordialidad... Siempre acompañando de muy buena manera. Muchas gracias, en especial Gabriela y Luis. Saludos cordiales

Pablo V
January 9, 2018

star rating  De inicio a fin, una experiencia única! La agente de ventas muy amable, respondió todas mis inquietudes previas al viaje y se aseguró de que todos mis requerimientos fueran atendidos durante el crucero. El guía asignado nos dio toda la información acerca de cada lugar visitado y se encargó de complacer con distintas actividades para que cada miembro de su variado grupo se sintiera atendido. En el crucero la tripulación muy atenta, sobre todo Carlitos que cuidó muy bien a nuestros niños durante la actividad de snorkeling. La comida variada y deliciosa. Y qué decir de esos paisajes maravillosos, quedarán grabados en nuestra memoria.
Conocer las islas encantadas de la mano de Surtrek es la mejor decisión. Les recomiendo!!

Scenic434694
December 16, 2020