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Getting To and Away from Quilotoa

Buses to Quilotoa originate from Latacunga, leaving Latacunga's bus terminal once a day (note that this bus stops in Quilotoa on its way to Chugchilán. There is also a daily bus from Latacunga to Chugchilán via Sigchos-do not get this bus, as it won't take you anywhere near Quilotoa!). The buses that run between Latacunga and Quilotoa are operated by Transporte Illiniza, who have a stand in the bus terminal.

There are also buses between Quilotoa and the nearby town of Zumbahua.

In Quilotoa, all buses leave from or close to the checkpoint at the entrance to the village.

Latacunga to Quilotoa (2.5 hr, $2.50): The Chugchilán-bound bus leaves Latacunga's bus terminal Monday to Saturday at 12 p.m., stopping in Quilotoa at 2.30 p.m. On Sunday, buses leave Latacunga at 7 a.m., 9 a.m. and 2 p.m., stopping in Quilotoa at 9.30 a.m., 11.30 a.m., and 4.30 p.m.

Quilotoa to Latacunga (2.5 hr, $2.50): The bus from Chugchilán stops in Quilotoa at 5 a.m. daily. On Wednesdays and Fridays, there is an additional bus that stops in Quilotoa on the way to Latacunga at 7 a.m. Note that buses are often delayed in Chugchilán, leaving up to an hour late; they also sometimes leave on time however, so it is best to assume that they will leave on time rather than miss the bus!

Quilotoa to Zumbahua (20 min, $0.50): Buses leave daily at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m.

Zumbahua to Quilotoa (20 min, $0.50): If you're in Zambahua, hop on the Quilotoa-bound bus from Latacunga which stops in the center of Zumbahua daily at 2 p.m. Otherwise, you can hire a camioneta (truck) for around $5.

If you need to get from Quilotoa to Latacunga but can't face the 5 a.m. start, take the bus to Zumbahua in the afternoon (or catch a ride in a camioneta from Quilotoa to Zumbahua for between $2-5), then from the center of Zambahua walk 10 minutes uphill to the highway, where you can hop on the Latacunga-bound bus that passes by every hour (2 hr, $2).

Alternatively, hiring a truck/taxi to take you between Quilotoa and Zumbahua costs between $10-15 one-way and to Chugchilán $25 one-way (with up to five passengers; each additional passenger incurs an extra $5). A private truck/taxi between Quilotoa and Latacunga will set you back around $40-50.

11 Sep 2012

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