From vast historic cities to giant volcanoes, deep jungles, and far-off islands filled with endemic wildlife, Ecuador is a bucket-list destination. Few other places on planet Earth can give you as good an insight into our natural world, not to mention the history of civilization. Although you have to travel far and wide to reach these mind-blowing destinations, they are not reserved for only the fittest among us, they are accessible to all. In fact, there are exceptional Ecuador tours for seniors across the country.
In this article, we highlight some of the top luxury Ecuador tours for seniors to show you exactly how you could explore the country to the full as a senior traveler. You’ll find out the best ways to see the world’s highest volcano at Cotopaxi National Park, go bird-watching in the Amazon Jungle, and visit Quito in luxury. By opting for these Ecuador tours for seniors, your trip will not only be more relaxed and slow-paced, but it will also be that bit more comfortable and luxurious than the average vacation.
Exploring any city as a senior traveler can sometimes feel tiring and overwhelming before you’ve even begun, especially in a city as big as Quito. However, as South America’s most well-preserved colonial Spanish city, it’s well worth the effort. By touring the city with a private car rather than on foot or public transport, you’ll minimize the amount of walking and waiting. Instead, you’ll be able to dictate where you go and how long you stay. While many of the city’s top sights are concentrated in the Historic Center, including the Basilica del Voto Nacional and Independence Square, there are exciting things to see and do across the city. With a private car, you can also visit the Middle of the World City in northern Quito to see the equatorial line.
Where to Stay: Casa Gangotena
To make your stay in Quito even more comfortable, stay in one of the city’s top luxury hotels like Casa Gangotena. This sumptuous boutique Relais & Chateaux hotel provides guests with palatial suites, indulgent dining and wellbeing facilities, and exclusive excursions accompanied by a hotel host. You’ll get to cook Ecuadorian cuisine, go chocolate tasting, and unlock the Secrets of Quito on a private city tour. With no more than four guests per host on each excursion, you’ll get a personalized city experience where all your needs are met and all your questions are answered.
Cotopaxi National Park tours
Home to the world’s highest active volcano, Cotopaxi National Park boasts some of the country’s most impressive natural landscapes. Being located just 30 miles south of Quito, it makes for an excellent day trip from the city. While many tourists visit Cotopaxi to challenge themselves to a steep high-altitude hike up the volcano, it’s not the only way to have a rewarding experience in the park. There are several smaller and flatter hikes in the park including the 1.5-hour Limpiopungo Lagoon hike which provides swooning views of the volcano. The rest of the national park is easy to see by road, so conserve your energy and book a private driving tour which will allow you to cover a lot of ground, see the best landscapes, and hike at your own pace. Alternatively, you can explore the park the traditional way: roaming the plains on horseback. As the horses do the legwork for you, you’ll be able to concentrate on the incredible scenery and still have plenty of energy for an elegant dinner upon your return to Quito.
The Galapagos is a wild and far-off land that is often presumed to require great effort to reach and explore. However, it’s actually one of the best places to find Ecuador tours for seniors. This is because the Galapagos is highly protected and well-conserved, visitors must be accompanied by a guide when exploring the archipelago. There are two ways to see the Galapagos, by land or by sea. While a land-based stay allows you to explore the islands at a slower pace, a Galapagos cruise allows you to see and do more whilst enjoying the luxuries paired with life onboard a luxury yacht. Find out which one is right for you.
A Luxury Galapagos Cruise
Ranging from 3 to 14 nights, a Galapagos cruise takes you on a journey to see and experience the best spots on the archipelago from red-sand beaches to dense mangroves. Since each of the Galapagos islands has its own unique landscapes and endemic species, the cruise enables you to enjoy the archipelago’s full spectrum of beauty. What’s more, you get to live a slice of the high life on board a luxury yacht as it whisks you from one island to the next. The cruise itinerary provides a full range of excursions led by a private guide that can be adapted to your needs. Snorkeling with turtles and sharks, birdwatching, and visiting conservation centers are among the unforgettable things you’ll experience on the cruise.
While a land-based stay doesn’t allow you to see and experience as much of the Galapagos as a cruise, it is better catered to those looking to explore at a slower pace. Since any exploration outside your hotel must be accompanied by a guide, all hotels provide a selection of experiences you can book as part of a package. The benefit of this is that you get to choose your own schedule and excursions rather than being dictated by an itinerary (like you are on a cruise). Despite not providing as great a variety of places to see in the Galapagos, most hotels still offer an exciting selection of rewarding experiences that you would hope to have in the Galapagos including snorkeling, birdwatching, and wildlife-spotting. An elite selection of hotels including Finch Bay and Pikaia Lodge even have their own yacht-based excursions, allowing you to have the best of both worlds.
Ecuadorian Amazon tours
Since the Ecuadorian Amazon is so big and far from civilization, visiting it requires a multi-day tour combined with a lodge stay. Many of the Amazon’s lodges are basic and offer a very back-to-nature approach to your Amazon stay. While they promise an authentic experience, they aren’t ideal for senior travelers, especially if you’ve become accustomed to certain luxuries in life. Therefore, the best Ecuador tours for senior travelers are found in the Amazon’s more luxurious jungle lodges, ones that allow you to explore the region without compromising your modern comforts. In fact, there is one in particular that we believe is perfectly suited to senior travelers in Ecuador.
Where to stay: La Selva Eco Lodge & Retreat
At La Selva, an eco-lodge reserve located in one of the Amazon’s most biodiverse regions, you’ll have the opportunity to get a real taste of the jungle on their personal and enriching private tours. You’ll canoe through the mangroves, birdwatch in the observation tower, walk through the forest trails, visit a local community, and even delve into the deepest parts of the jungle on a motorboat ride along the river. Since all of their excursions are private, you’ll be able to decide what you see and at what pace, reassured by the knowledge you’ll be returning to one of the most sumptuous lodges in the Amazon. On some days, you might get hot and sticky trekking in the jungle, but on others, you’ll be treated to a hot stone massage in the spa followed by five-star food prepared by passionate in-house chefs before retiring to a spacious modern suite.
Cloud Forest tours
The Ecuador Cloud Forest is an excellent destination for senior travelers because it promises to give you insight into the country’s incredible nature and biodiversity without requiring much travel. You can reach the heart of the cloud forest by road from Quito in only 2.5 hours, yet it will feel like civilization is thousands of miles away. Similar to the Amazon, the cloud forest is bursting with a stupefying spectrum of wildlife whilst remaining much more temperate. At protected reserves, visitors are able to join a professional naturalist or conservationist guide to delve deep into the forest and spot rare birds, reptiles, insects, and mammals like the jaguar, sloth, and howler monkey. Like any protected Ecuadorean land, it’s only possible to visit the Cloud Forest on guided tours run by conservation and research centers in the area.
Where to stay: Mashpi Lodge
The Mashpi Lodge is ideal for senior travelers looking for a luxurious and enriching stay in nature. The hotel itself is a beautifully designed retreat perched in the forest canopy with big floor-to-ceiling windows in every room from the suites to the dining room and spa. Meanwhile, the excursions allow you to get an unmatched insight into the biodiversity and topography of the region, as well as insight into the science of their research and conservation work.
Secure your favorite Ecuador tours for seniors
Each of the tours and accommodations in this article can be woven together by our Ecuador travel experts to create that once-in-a-lifetime trip you’ve been dreaming of. Whether you want to visit two destinations or all five, our Ecuador experts will ensure the trip is perfectly suited to your needs as a senior traveler. Speak to us by calling toll-free on 1 855 217 9045 (USA/Canada) or by filling in our online contact form.