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Haciendas of Ecuador: Zuleta

3 Days
Prices From:
US$ 1,684

Venture north of Quito to spend a couple nights at Zuleta, a gorgeous 17th-century hacienda that’s among Ecuador’s finest properties. You’ll also visit the Indigenous market town of Otavalo, hike alongside a crater lake, and have the freedom of the working farm to meet vaqueros and enjoy the natural surroundings.

This 3-day Ecuadorian vacation takes you to a beautiful hacienda to the north of Quito. It features first-class accommodations, active tours, and is a great add-on to a longer trip to Ecuador.

Your journey begins in Quito, the Ecuadorian capital, where you’ll join your tour and head north to the Quitsato Sundial, located on the equator. Continue to Otavalo, either by hiking along a back road or on a short drive, where you’ll see the ascendant community of the Kichwa Indigenous people. After touring the world-famous craft market, where you can admire their traditional weaving, you’ll visit the workshop of master weaver Miguel Andrango in nearby Agato. In the afternoon, continue to the Cotacachi-Cayapas Ecological Reserve to admire views of the deep-blue Cuicocha Lagoon before hiking to the colonial town of Cotacahi and connecting to nearby Hacienda Zuleta, your home for the next two nights.

Hacienda Zuleta is a 4-star hacienda from the late 17th century that’s among the most gorgeous accommodations in Ecuador. Owned by the family of Galo Plaza Lasso, the former president of Ecuador, this 4,000ac property is a working farm with comfortable rooms and classical charm. During a full day at the hacienda, you’ll hike to a nearby cheese factory, visit an embroidery workshop, and see purebred horses on the farm. You’ll be at leisure to take advantage of the grounds. Feed baby calves, stroll through the garden, and talk to the vaqueros to learn about life on the hacienda.

The following day, hike to the condor reintroduction project, which rehabilitates Andean Condors, and see some pre-Inca mounds before returning to Quito to continue your onward journey.


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3 Days
Prices From:
US$ 1,684

Itinerary View Trip Map

Day 1

Quito to Otavalo

Depart Quito and visit the Quitsato Sundial, a cultural-tourist area located on the equatorial line near the Cayambe Volcano, where you will learn about the astronomical knowledge of the region's pre-hispanic cultures.

Then head to the town of Otavalo, either on foot (a recommended one hour hike on a back road or a ten minute drive). This is truly one of the most interesting towns in Ecuador, where the local Kichwa indigenous culture is not only plainly visible, but in the ascendancy.

The town's famous craft market is one of the most visited sites in Ecuador, and with good reason. The market is filled with interesting colorful and sometimes rare objects and crafts. Do remember to bargain, but only if you're interested! The market is held every day on one of the town squares at the foot of the majestic Mt. Imbabura. And to help you navigate the market, you will be given a short explanation of the market and provided with a map of the area.

As part of your day at the market you will visit the workshop of Master weaver Miguel Andrango, in the village of Agato. Miguel's art has taken him abroad, mainly to exhibitions and fairs in the United States where the quality of his work is widely acknowledged. In the small store in the courtyard of his Tawantinsuyo workshop, the walls are covered with bright designs, most with an indigenous motif; the designs are based on Inca patterns but are the work of Miguel and his family. The workshop uses only pure wool and Alpaca; the weavers card and spin it themselves and then dye it with natural inks made from mosses (for yellow) or seeds such as 'Achiote'(for red).

In the afternoon, drive to the Cotacachi-Cayapas Ecological Reserve for a visit to the interpretation center and an outstanding view of the Cuicocha lagoon, a deep-blue crater lake on the lower southern flanks of Mount Cotacachi. After our hike we will stop at the picturesque colonial town of Cotacachi, famous for its leatherwork. It is then onto your hacienda for the night.

Meal Plan Lunch and Dinner

Hacienda Zuleta

More Info

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    Hacienda Zuleta

    Dating from the late XVI century, our Ecuadorian Hotel lies in the spectacular Andean mountain range of Ecuador at 9,600 feet (2,800 meters) above the sea level, and only two hours north of Quito, the capital of Ecuador. Zuleta is a colonial working farm of …

    Dating from the late XVI century, our Ecuadorian Hotel lies in the spectacular Andean mountain range of Ecuador at 9,600 feet (2,800 meters) above the sea level, and only two hours north of Quito, the capital of Ecuador.

    Zuleta is a colonial working farm of 4,000 acres (2,000 hectares) that belongs to the family of Mr. Galo Plaza lasso, a former president of Ecuador, for more than 100 years. It was chosen as one of the world's "Top Ten Finds" by Outside magazine and named as one of the best Ecuador Hotel by National Geographic Traveler. Hacienda Zuleta offers a great variety of activities and places to visit to its guests. With horseback riding in Ecuador being our specialty, we also offer mountain bikes and a horse drawn carriage for trips on hacienda grounds to observe the milking, the agriculture, mountain views and the tranquil life of the community. Guest can also visit our Condor Andes rehabilitation program "Condor Huasi Project" that works for the rehabilitation of the majestic Andean Condor.

    The Plaza family with his natural warmth and hospitality welcomes you to their country house and invites you to share life at an authentic hacienda in the Andes of Ecuador.


    • Bar
    • Child Friendly
    • Laundry Service
    • Restaurant

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Day 2


Hike for an hour returning back to the hacienda to visit the cheese factory and embroidery workshop and learn all about the farm's purebred horses, the general agriculture, forestation and dairy farming operations. Chose to visit the organic garden, feed baby calves, count sheep, talk to the vaqueros, enjoy the embroidery museum, or relax in the garden and visit the hacienda surroundings. The remainder of the day is free to relax or visit the beautiful grounds of the hacienda.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 3

Otavalo to Quito

Enjoy a morning hike to the hacienda's condor reintroduction project, stopping along the way to see some pre-Inca mounds. Early afternoon you are transferred back to Quito.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Lunch

Other Information




  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • 2 nights' first class accommodations
  • Meals as indicated
  • English speaking guide
  • Visit to the equator
  • Daily trekking


  • Travel insurance
  • International and domestic airfare & airfare taxes
  • Visa fees if applicable
  • Meals and beverages not mentioned
  • Gratuities
  • Items of a personal nature


Prices are "from" per person based on twin/double share accommodation and for travel in low season. Seasonal surcharges and blackout dates may apply. Limited seat/spaces and all pricing is subject to change and availability. Rates for single or triple travellers are available on request - please inquire.

29 Dec 2023

Excursion Suggestions

As there is so much to see and do in many of our City Breaks/Stopover Ideas, you should consider staying longer. Below is a list of suggestions that can be added to your stay.

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