Quilotoa Crater

Quilotoa Travel Blog

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Nicole wanted to stay at the hotel so I went to Quilotoa Crater by myself. I thought I got up quite early but after I showered and had breakfast it was already 9:30 and the best bus to Quilotoa from Latacunga had left at 9am. There was another bus at 11am but the problem would be that it would take 2 to 3 hours to get to Quilotoa and the last bus from Quilotoa leaves at 13h30 so I wouldn't be able to get back, or get back cheaply at least. There was the option of hiring a bakkie (pickup truck) to take me to Zumbuhaua (sp?) but they might charge me as much as 10USD. I decided that the worst that might happen is that I might to stay over for a night so I packed my sleeping bag and headed out on the 11am bus anyway.

When I arrived in Quilotoa the weather had obviously deteriorated and it was cloudy and raining a little bit. The crater rim is right next to the bus stop so I walked up to it and only saw clouds. I then started looking around for a place to stay as I expected to have to wait until morning to get a decent view of the crater and the lagune (sp?). The first hostel right opposite the crater is decent and offered me a room for 10 USD including dinner and breakfast. I walked around a bit more and found another hostal where the owner Manuel initially quoted me 8 USd and then came down to 6 USD for the same deal. His lodgings were a lot more simple though, basically consisting of a large room with 5 or more double beds crammed in. I got the impression that I would be sleeping in the same room as him and his family as well. Initially I was a bit taken a back but he didn't let me leave and accompanied me back to the crater rim. After a while the idea actually grew on me because I thought it might be a nice way to get to know a local family and practice my spanish a bit as well.

As we got to the crater though the clouds had cleared up somewhat and I managed to get a decent view of the lake and take some pictures. I still wanted to stay to hike down to the lake in the morning which I think would have been awesome but in the end I decided that I better get back to Nicole. I had also found a truck that would take me to Zumbuhaua for 2 USD instead of 10 USD and from there I could catch a bus to Latacunga which runs every hour. Thus it was decided and I was on my way back to Latacunga.
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photo by: xander_van_hoof