Skip link for screen readers

It is well worth travelling north for an extended stay in the Otavalo region, with the famous market, stunning scenery and the colonial town on Ibarra to explore.

Travel northeast from Quito on the Panamericana and discover lesser-visited Northern Sierra. Staying in the area will allow you more time to visit the famous arts and craft market at Otavalo as well as exploring the stunning countryside, volcanoes and colonial Ibarra. There are several accommodation options, the best being Hacienda Zuleta - one of Ecuador's most authentic haciendas.

Cayambe sits at the foot of Volcan Cayambe, Ecuador's third largest volcano. From here you can explore the Reserva Ecologica Cayambe-Coca, a protected area of over 4000 square kilometres with much birdlife to observe. Nearby is the pre-Inca ruins of Cochasqui and hot springs at Oyacachi an idyllic village nestled in the hills.

The big draw of the region is Otavalo, where the authentic market offering weavings, textiles, jewellery, carvings and other handicrafts is a joy to experience. However, you will need to use all your negotiating skills to the full. The market is open daily, with Wednesdays and Saturdays being the biggest in terms of numbers of vendors and hence choice of items to purchase. 

North of Otavalo is the charming colonial city of Ibarra, with elegant, whitewashed buildings, churches, cathedral, several museums and parks. Well worth visiting. 


Image for: Nick Goodchild - AITO.jpg

Need some help with your trip? Our advisors have travelled extensively and using their firsthand knowledge & experience can help craft your perfect holiday.

AITO Widget

The Northern Sierra


Hacienda Zuleta

Located just 2 hours from Quito, the perfect base to explore the stunning mountain scenery and nearby Otavalo.




SUMMER IN SOUTH AMERICA - As we move into the Winter, South America moves into the Summer. The dry season in Central America and best time to visit

NEW HOLIDAYS - Whichever departure date you may consider, now is the time to plan your next trip. Check the tour itineraries and download from our website, request our brochures or contact our travel agents.

BROCHURE - New Latin America brochure is out now to inspire you. View and request a copy in Brochures

FREE TRAVEL INSURANCE WITH COVID-19 COVER - We will cover the cost of your travel insurance.