Avenue of the Volcanoes Trail

10 Daysย  |ย  From ยฃ2296pp

Ecuador ( Best airport: Quito, Ecuador)

A unique adventure in the spectacular Ecuadorian high Andes. This trail takes you through the heart of Ecuadorโ€™s Avenue of the Volcanoes, just 45 minutes south of the historic colonial city of Quito. The perfect trail for riders looking for an adventure in comfort, the traditional hospitality with a touch of luxury at this hacienda is second to none. Running for over a decade, this trail was understandably voted one of the top horse treks in the world by CNN.

The Riding

Ecuador is a riders paradise with a dizzying variety of landscapes and scenery. The first few days of the trail are dedicated to acclimatizing to the altitude; youโ€™ll ride through farmland, thickly forested valleys and alpine terrain before reaching the rare cloud forest; an area of lush native, subtropical vegetation. As the trail continues you will ascend up to the highland plateaus of the Andes.

The region is flanked by eight dizzyingly-high snow-mantled mountains, known as the Avenue of Volcanoes and the valleys are rich with a landscape of dense forest and tiny fields plastering impossibly steep slopes. Dotted around is a mix of deeply traditional indigenous and colonial settlements. This is supreme riding country, with trails leading to craters harbouring turquoise volcanic lakes, with views of one the biggest peaks; Cotopaxi. The pace is tailored to the needs of the group although all riders will be at least intermediate level. For those who are happy to go faster there are opportunities for longer canters and gallops.

Level of Riding and Fitness

This trail is for intermediate riders confident at walk, trot and canter on varied and sometimes very steep terrain. There are also some long days in the saddle (7+ hours) so all participants will need to be riding fit and we advise riding regularly prior to coming on the trail. You will need to be able to mount and dismount independently, be capable in the saddle and ready for the long days at high altitude. The weight limit is 95kg.

Guides and Group Size

Youโ€™ll be guided by the host and owner of Hacienda Alegria: Gabriel Espinosa. A natural horseman he has been welcoming guests and guiding trails for decades.

The group size is between 2-12.

The Horses

The horses used at this destination are excellent, most have been bred on the farm from mixed Criollo (native South American), English Thoroughbred and Arabian stock, resulting in a near perfect combination of toughness, agility, calm temperament and mountain sense. Beginners and experienced riders alike have found them easy to ride, willing and good mannered.
A range of tack is used including North American style, English style, Mcclellan cavalry saddles, and traditional Ecuadorian โ€œChagraโ€ style with its intricate leather-work and saddle horn.

Avenue of the Volcanoes Trail - Horse Riding Holidays in Ecuador

Accommodation and Dining

You will stay in Hacienda La Alegria for the first two nights before heading out on the ride as well as your final night. Set in a 135-hectare organic dairy farm and ranch and nestled into a lush valley less than an hour from Ecuador’s capital. The Hacienda’s large rooms feature high ceilings, original hardwood floors, private bathrooms, Wifi and spectacular views over the surrounding countryside. While on the trail local haciendas and mountain hostels are used for dinner and overnight stays.

All meals are included and feature delicious, gourmet international and Ecuadorian foods. Wine and beer is also included.

Get a free Avenue of the Volcanoes Trail mini-brochure in PDF format.


Avenue of the Volcanoes Trail

10 days / 9 nights / 8 days riding

Single supplement ยฃ110

Flights & Airport transfers

Do not book flights until you have received the Booking confirmation email from saddletravel.com.

Please plan your flights to/from Quito as follows:

Please book a flight which arrives between 8am-7pm on the first day. Your departure flight should leave after midday. Return airport transfers cost ยฃ75 and the journey takes around 45 minutes.

Price Includes
  • 9 nights accommodation in shared rooms
  • Breakfasts
  • Picnic lunches during the trail
  • Dinners
  • Drinks with meals including wine and beer
  • 8 days of horse riding
  • Riding equipment including wool ponchos, rain ponchos, chaps, helmets and saddlebags
  • Bilingual Spanish/English guide
  • Luggage transfer
Price Excludes
  • International flights
  • Airport transfers
  • Tips