Want to travel your own way? We get it. With the Wanderbus, you’re free to choose where you sleep (dorm room or private suite), where you eat (street food or fancy dinner), which of our free experiences you’d prefer to enjoy, and whether you’d like to stay longer at any stop along our route. It’s up to you — and it’s valid for a year!
To make the most of your journey to highlights and remote locations, you are accompanied by excellent and passionate English/Spanish-speaking guides aboard comfortable private vehicles with safe drivers.
Day 1: Baños to Alausí — Deep dive into Andean life & culture
- Experience traditional markets in Guamote or Riobamba, and learn about the limpia treatment at the Cacha ceremonial center.
- Get off the beaten track with a walk to the Lakes of Ozogoche in Sangay National Park in a remote indigenous community.
Day 2: Alausí to Cuenca — Explore two must-sees in one day
- Ride the most exciting section of the world’s most difficult railway: the famous zig-zag Devil’s Nose Train.
- Step back in time by wandering Ecuador’s largest and most impressive Inca ruins at Ingapirca.
- See the sights and sounds of Cuenca
Day 3: Free Day in Cuenca, or Tours around Cuenca
- Option A) Explore on your own: wander around Cuenca’s streets, plazas, and rivers on your own.
- Option B) Tour: In the morning visit the villages of Gualaceo and Chordeleg, or in the afternoon travel to the Pumapungo ruins and the Turi viewpoint.
Day 4: Cuenca to Montañita — A day of new experiences
- Stroll through El Cajas National Park and learn about its wildlife.
- Meet the farmers of a cacao plantation to make your own home-made chocolate.
- Learn about paja toquilla Panama Hats at a local community famed for its women weavers.
ADD ON – Day 5: Free Day in Montañita or Puerto Lopez, or Los Frailes Beach Tour
- Option A) Explore on your own: surf and hang out in Montañita.
- Option B) Tour: Visit the most beautiful beach in the country (Los Frailes) while enjoying the scenic coast’s seafood and wildlife.
Add-on Activities and Tours
At Wanderbus, we’re flexible: we want you to design your perfect journey. So, in Cuenca and on the Coast, we’ve given you the option to explore on your own (Option A) or join an experience we’ve designed especially for our wanderers (Option B). We created these experiences so that you can explore more of Ecuador, wander further off the beaten track, and get closer to the country’s fascinating natural and cultural worlds — all in the company of our brilliant team of passionate guides. Add three of these experiences at these locations to your pass for just $80 — saving up to $40!
Tucan Pass Day-by-Day Experience
Departure Days from Baños
- Monday & Thursday: 4 days
Day 1: Baños to Alausi
|06:30||Pick up in Baños at the Basilica|
|08:00 – 09:00||Experience a traditional breakfast of the Puruhá culture|
|09:00 – 10:30||Visit an indigenous ceremonial temple in Ecuador and learn about the limpia ceremony|
|11:30 – 12:45||Visit Guamote or Riobamba to explore one of the most authentic markets in the country|
|14:00 – 16:00||Guidance at Ozogoche, explore more than 45 lagoons and spotting highland wildlife amid landscapes|
|18:30||Drop off at the train station in Alausí|
Day 2: Alausi to Cuenca
|08:30 – 10:30||Ride the famous Devil’s Nose Train and zig-zag through the mountains|
|13:00||Stop for lunch|
|14:00 – 15:00||Venture to the Ecuadorian Inca ruins of Ingapirca for a tour of this site|
|17:00 – 18:30||Afternoon city tour of Cuenca|
Day 3: Full Day Cuenca
Free day to explore Cuenca’s streets, plazas, and rivers on your own OR join our tours to the traditional villages of Gualaceo and Chordeleg in the morning and the Pumapungo ruins and the Turi lookout in the afternoon, details below:
|08:00||Pick up in Cuenca Parque Calderon|
|08:30 – 11:00||Visits to the small traditional villages of Gualaceo and Chordeleg|
|13:00||Pick up in Cuenca Parque Calderon|
|13:30 – 15:00||Visit the enchanting Pumapungo ruins|
|16:00 – 17:20||Get the best views of Cuenca from the Turi viewpoint|
Day 4: Cuenca to Montañita
|07:00||Pick up in Cuenca Parque Calderon|
|07:45 – 08:20||Stop for breakfast|
|08:30 – 09:30||Guidance at El Cajas National Park for a wet and wild adventure among 200 lakes.|
|12:15 – 14:00||Experience how to create your own chocolate at a local cacao hacienda and stop for lunch|
|15:15 – 15:30||Arrive in Guayaquil to drop off/pick up those who wish to stay here.|
|17:40 – 18:10||Stop in a local community to learn how to make the famous Panama Hats with paja toquilla|
|19:00||Drop off in Montañita at Los Caminantes|
Day 5: Day in Montañita, or Los Frailes Beach & Puerto López
Free day to surf and hang out in Montañita OR join our tour to Los Frailes beach, details below:
|08:45||Pick up in Montañita at Los Caminantes|
|08:00 – 09:00||Visit to the small artistic town of La Entrada to explore and take some pictures|
|09:15 – 10:00||Stop for a traditional coastal breakfast at beautiful Ayampe Beach|
|10:30||Drop off in Puerto Lopez for those who want to stay here and not go to Los Frailes|
|11:00 – 11:45||Light hike to Los Frailes, the most beautiful beach in the country|
|11:45 – 14:30||Time to enjoy the white sands and the clear ocean water of Los Frailes beach|
|15:15||Drop off in Puerto Lopez at Hotel Piedra del Mar|
Since we want you to travel your way, you can choose to book your own accommodation, or you can take advantage of the great deals we have with local partners at locations around the country.
Add $45 for 3 nights in a shared dorm for single travelers in hostels.
Add $75 for 3 nights in mid-range hotels.
Prices are subject to change due to high demand.
- All our Wanderpasses are valid for 12 months so you can stay as long as you want wherever you want.
- You can always change your itinerary — even while you’re traveling — as many times as you like, free of charge.
- You can easily add three or four days (depending on the day of the week) anywhere along our route.
- Baños: Add more days to our tour if you want more adventure, or a 3/4-day tour to the Amazon.
- Riobamba: Explore local Andean culture and climb the Chimborazo Volcano.
- Cuenca: Add days if you’d like to spend more time in this great city, or why not sign up for Spanish classes for a week or three?
- Guayaquil: Discover this bustling city, stroll the Malecon, and fly to the Galapagos Islands.
- Montañita: Want to surf, party and chill at the beach for longer? Just add more days according to our timetables.
Monday & Thursdays: 4 days