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Termas de Papallacta

Eastern Andes – Cloud forest – Paramo

Overview

Nestled in a high Andean valley, 67 km east of Quito, Termas de Papallacta offers fantastic birding in the Rancho del Canon and the Cayambe-Coca Ecological Reserve, with spectacular scenery, comfortable cabins and thermal baths. At 3,300 meters above sea level, it is probably the highest most of you will stay during your time in Ecuador. Its altitude and location in humid upper-montane forest makes it usually cool and wet, which is beautifully contrasted by the steaming hot thermal baths at the end of a days exploring or bird watching.  On a clear day visitors can enjoy some spectacular views of glacier landscape, including the now extinct Antisana volcano (5704 m).

Coming from Quito you drive up to the Papallacta Pass, an area over 3600 metres, through areas of paramo (wet grasslands) famous for birdwatching. Next to the Termas de Papallacta you can visit the Rancho del Cañón, a protected area extending 250 hectares which borders with the Cayambe-Coca Ecological Reserve, a 400,000 hectare reserve managed by the Ministry of the Environment.

 

If you would like any more information or to chat over the details of the trip we would be delighted to help. Telephone Telephone01964 552292 for more information or emailemail us today.

Facilities

Accommodation

  • 32 rooms, each with heating and a private bathroom. Amongst these are 13 one and two storey cabins, located 100 meters from the main hotel, these are warm and cosy with a fireplace and living room. The cabins are located next to the thermal pools for the exclusive use of hotel guests.
  • The restaurant offers Ecuadorean and international cuisine, trout is particularly recommended, as a speciality from the area.

Activities

  • Birdwatching in the surrounding Rancho del Canon and Cayambe-Coca Ecological Reserve.
  • Thermal Springs:  The hydrothermal value of the hot springs here is a result of Papallacta's location between two volcanoes, the Cayambe Volcano and Antisana Volcano. Temperature at the pools ranges between 36°C and 40°C (97°F to 104°F). The hydrotherapy area consists of five hot thermal pools and one cold pool, with a Thermoludic Area which offers a range of hydro massages using either water jets or air bubbles. Also on offer for those who feel like a pamper are a variety of massages and face and body treatments at the Spa.

 

If you would like any more information or to chat over the details of the trip we would be delighted to help. Telephone Telephone01964 552292 for more information or emailemail us today.

Birding

The Papallacta Pass provides a great experience of high Andean birding –the high pass brings you above the tree line. This is the only place near Quito to look for the very rare Masked Mountain Tanager.  You can search for high-elevation species such as Ecuadorian Hillstar, Blue-mantled Thornbill, Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe, Bar-winged and Stout-billed Cinclodes and Red-rumped Bush-Tyrant.

On the eastern side of the pass there are some intact areas of of Polylepis woodland (a genus of trees and shrubs restricted to the high Andes of South America, which frequently grows above the natural tree line). Here there is a chance to see Giant Conebill and Black-backed Bush-Tanager while scanning the skies for Andean Condor.

This area around Papallacta has approximately160 species of birds.

 

If you would like any more information or to chat over the details of the trip we would be delighted to help. Telephone Telephone01964 552292 for more information or emailemail us today.

Think Galapagos

Rachel DexCall Rachel,
Ecuador Specialist
on 01964 552292
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