“You can’t be at the pole and the equator at the same time. You have to choose. And I have high hopes of doing that, too, and it will probably be colour.” – Vincent van Gogh –

About Ecuador

Discover the secret of Latin America. Choosing a journey here at the equator is equal to choosing colour in your life. Colour in cultures and landscapes. All aspects of Latin America unite in Ecuador. Ecuador is home to close to 17 million inhabitants; a very diverse population with many different ethnic groups, each with its own culture and history. The country also has an important creative tradition and has greatly influenced art in Latin America. Traditional artisan crafts in the field of weaving, leather, carvings, hats and jewellery are still very much alive in the streets and local markets today.

A country full of vibrant sensations and flavours

For nature lovers and bird watchers, Ecuador is without a doubt one of the most beautiful destinations in the world. In this relatively small country, comparable to the size of Italy, you will find the largest biodiversity on the planet. It is no surprise Ecuador lives by its motto: “Ama la Vida – love life!” It was the first country to recognise Rights of Nature in its Constitution.

Discover Ecuador, discover life!


With landscapes that stretch from a warm coast with a dry desert climate via the volcanic highlands in the Andes through to the tropical Amazon, you can experience an unprecedented variety of nature in just a few days. Ecuador divides its mainland into three very distinct zones: La Costa, La Sierra and La Selva. And of course, the amazing Galápagos Islands as a fourth region. All these areas combined provide a wide range of impressions, a diversity that cannot be found elsewhere on the planet!

The Andes has an awe-inspiring beauty in contrasts. The hardness of the rocks under the deep blue sky, the silky appearance of snow and glaciers against the reddish hues of the hills,

Flora & Fauna

Ecuador is blessed with beautiful and versatile arrays of landscapes, habitats and species due to its variety of climate zones. It is even the fourth richest country in bird biodiversity worldwide and new species are still being discovered to this day. Read our article “The Ecuadorian treasure” to learn more about the nature that will enchant your journey.


Communities in the Amazon rainforest, colonial cities in the Andes Mountains, fishing villages on the coast, old haciendas and busy markets; this is the backdrop where the cultures of Ecuador come together. By merely driving a few hours by car you can arrive in an entirely new community with its own customs, traditional dress and cuisine. From the rich and varied culinary traditions to customs for celebrating holidays and religious festivities, the colourful culture of Ecuador is a pleasure to discover.

“The various groups of people who have come to settle in Ecuador and the country’s many indigenous groups have all contributed to Ecuadorian culture as it is today”

The Ecuadorian People

Contemporary Ecuadorian culture has its roots in a rich and multi-ethnic history. The population of Ecuador is similar to the size of the Netherlands and very mixed in ethnic terms. The different people who have settled in Ecuador and the country’s many indigenous groups have all contributed to today’s Ecuadorian culture.

With a population reaching over 2 million, the Andes Quichua are by far the largest group. However, the Andes has many smaller groups such as the Caranqui, the Otavaleños and the Cayambi, to name just a few. The Amazon region is as rich in indigenous cultures as the highlands. In the rainforest Shamanic traditions are respected by the Huaorani and Zaparo, among many others.

In addition to the varied indigenous cultures, Ecuador has a flourishing Mestizo culture and a large Afro-Ecuadorian culture, descendants of African slaves who worked on the sugar plantations on the coast in the sixteenth century. They are known for their marimba music and dance festivals.


Ecuador has a dazzling number of 51 national parks and protected nature reserves that cover almost 20% of its territory. An absolute dream destination for nature lovers. In addition, Ecuador is one of the best destinations for outdoor activities in Latin America. The coast has great surfing spots, in the Andes you can go hiking, mountain climbing, mountain biking, horse riding, rafting, canyoning or zip lining and in the rainforest you will float down the river in a canoe. You can relax in the natural thermal baths and indulge in culinary delights in local restaurants. Colonial cities will complement your trip.

Best time to visit


In the cities of Ecuador you will find wonderful boutique hotels, located in beautifully renovated colonial buildings. When you visit the highlands of Ecuador, staying at a hacienda is an absolute “must”. Haciendas are historic farms, founded by Spanish settlers in the 16th century. While preserving their original architecture, gardens and old trees, these estates have been tastefully renovated with attention to detail and transformed into lodges where you will stay in comfort. Do you want to know which ones are our favourites?

“Imagine what your journey of a lifetime would look like”

Inspiring holidays

The options to choose from in Ecuador are virtually endless. You can stay in luxury or humble accommodations, explore local markets, discover contemporary culture and history, enjoy nature in silence or turn your vacation into an adrenaline infused sporting event. The journeys described below are easily combined with a cruise expedition through the Galápagos Islands.

Be inspired and contact us. We are happy to help you chart your ideas and wishes. By listening to your wants and needs, we will create the journey of your dreams. We curate tailor-made, truly individual travel experiences to your heart’s desire.

Touch the Soul Ecuador (10 days)

This journey takes you to the soul of colourful Ecuador. You will visit colonial Quito, stay in a luxurious lodge in the most beautiful cloud forest of the country and you will go on an adventure at two grandiose haciendas in the Andes mountains.

Unique golf holiday including Galápagos (21 days)

A journey in which you combine your passion for golf with your love for nature and culture. You play beautiful golf courses, explore tropical forests, enjoy historic haciendas in the Andes, active volcanoes and the most beautiful colonial cities in South America: Quito and Cuenca, both declared UNESCO World Heritage Sites. You end your trip with a 4-day expedition cruise in the Galápagos Islands.

Adventurous Ecuador (17 days)

This beautiful, adventurous journey will introduce you to all facets of Ecuador. Nature and an active holiday predominate. You will explore the Amazon, mountain bike among the volcanoes and descend along refreshing waterfalls. The chosen hotels are basic but very good and attractive.

Birding Ecuador (10 days)

Aves Travels is your specialist for birding holidays to Ecuador. We offer both group tours as well as bespoke, individual programs, in which you can explore all the stunning natural areas of this country. This example tour is very suitable for novice birders on a first visit to Ecuador, but also interesting for the more experienced. In addition to trips aimed at spotting unique bird species, we also offer holidays where you combine bird watching with photography. Read about this in our blog “Exclusive birding and photography tours”. Learn more.

New! Explore the Ecuadorian coast aboard a luxury yacht (8 days)

Aves Travels continuously seeks to amaze our guests with unique travel experiences. Aboard your intimate, 16-passenger, luxury yacht you will experience a unique variety of nature ranging from mangroves, cloud forests, pristine beaches to uninhabited islands equal to Galápagos atmosphere, vibrant fishing villages, local culture and exquisite gastronomy. This exclusive journey will take you to places that are extremely difficult to reach overland, making it truly an experience of a lifetime.

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