The Quilotoa is a beautiful lagoon that has formed in a volcano crater. From the top rim, you have a beautiful view on the surrounding mountain tops and the colorful lake. Its water even changes its color depending on the light, from bright blue to green.
At the Quilotoa, there are a few different hikes offered, from just an hour to a multiple-days trip. Every single one of them offers incredible sights and nature in its own way. But remember to bring warm, water and wind resistant clothing as it is often quite windy and cold up in the mountains.
The easiest and shortest hike is the descent and ascent to and from the lake. The descent takes about 30 minutes, but the ascent takes at least twice the time because of the very steep path. Once you reach the bottom, you can just enjoy the beauty from close up, or rent a kayak and paddle into the quiet, colorful water. If you want to take it easy, you can rent horses for the way back up.
Another great hike is a path that leads around the rim of the crater. I offer the maybe best view, as you can see the whole lake but also the complete landscape surrounding the volcano. This hike takes, give or take, 7 hours, but it isn’t a continuous ascent as you already are at the top.
The Quilotoa Loop
This is the longest hike in the area, as it takes three to five days to complete. All around the Quilotoa, there are other smaller volcanoes, rivers, beautiful valleys and small indigenous communities that are very interesting to visit. You can do so by following the trail that connects them, spending your nights in the villages you visit, either with a tour or self-guided. The hike is recommended by many hikers and we assure you that it will be a great experience of the culture and nature that Ecuador has to offer!