Avenue of Volcanoes and Trains
The Avenue of Volcanoes runs between eight snow-covered mountains south of Quito. Landscapes range from dense forest to cultivated fields clinging to steep slopes with sparse traditional villages, colonial settlements and estates, whose mansions have been converted into country house hotels.
This area is excellent for hiking, with good trails and awe-inspiring vistas of volcanoes and craters with turquoise blue lakes.
This memorable train journey takes you through the Avenue of the Volcanoes and other highlights of Ecuador.
The Tren Crucero is pulled by modern, electric-diesel and restored steam locomotives. It consists of two luxury, Colonial and Republican-style themed carriages, with a bar, gift shop, two comfortable observation lounges and an open-air terrace. Just fifty passengers are carried on this boutique train.
The four-day journey runs from Otavalo in the north via Quito to Guayaquil and vice versa. Setting off from Otavalo, the train passes traditional villages en route to Quito. From there, the train climbs to the Avenue of Volcanoes, and the mythical ‘Devil’s Nose’ pass, with its vertiginous switchbacks.
Thereafter it descends along the Chanchan River canyon, passing through cloud forest, before reaching tropical plantations and Guayaquil. The journey covers some 300 miles and descends 12,000 feet.
A magical journey.