Located over 10,000 feet above sea level in a temperate montane forest, Papallacta Thermal Springs Resort is just two hours away from Quito. Nestled high in the Andean Cordillera at the entrance of the Amazonian jungle, Papallacta features several hot thermal spring pools of different sizes and temperatures, with hydro-massage and bubble jets; private pools are used by Metropolitan's guests, but they also have access to the public pools if they wish. The hydrothermal value of Termas de Papallacta's Hot Springs is thanks to Papallacta's location between two volcanoes, Volcano Cayambe and Volcano Antisana. Facilities include a first-class hotel, a full service spa and restaurants offering local and international cuisine with its main specialty: fresh trout.
Depart from Quito in the morning for Papallacta Pass traveling on the Cinnamon Trail, the route the Spanish Conquistador Francisco de Orellana took in 1542, when he crossed the Andean mountain range in search of spices and gold, only to discover the Amazon River. Upon arrival direct access to the Spa (pools) where guests receive towels, bathing caps and an assigned locker. A snack is served at the Cafeteria of the Spa (hot cheese sandwich, coffee or tea) and then relax and soak away life's aches and pains. Revitalize your body and soul in Ecuador's only Spa that offers hydrotherapy using mineral, medicinal thermal water. At Papallacta you will begin to feel the beneficial effects of the life-giving, diaphanous air which originates in a singular meeting of the Amazonian winds with the rocks, forests and water of the high Andean mountains. At the hot thermal spring pools experience the notable, restorative effects of the crystalline thermal waters (sulfate alkaline terreous). Submerge yourself in the warm water and take advantage of its curative properties in rheumatic, arthritic, digestive and respiratory processes. The water is odorless, crystalline and ever changing.
Lunch is served at the Cafeteria of the Spa, featuring fresh trout from their own trout farm. Vegetarian and other options are also available. Lunch menu includes: soup of the day, entrée and dessert. In the afternoon, discover your adventurous spirit through a nature walk on marked paths alongside pristine mountain streams, observing the flora and fauna of the humid montane Andean forest of the Canyon Ranch, one of the entrances to the Cayambe-Coca National Park. After this gratifying hike, return to Quito.
- Round trip land transportation and guide
- Box lunch
- Entrance fees to National Parks, Natural Reserves, community projects, and others are included in the excursions or have no cost. Unless otherwise is specified in each tour section.
- Use of the Resort SPA facilities (other than the pools) have extra cost
- Resort facilities include a first-class Spa that offers hydrotherapy using mineral, medicinal thermal water, therapies, massages, and treatments tailored to your needs. Upon arrival guests can make reservations for individual treatments or massages if desire.
Our recommendations for the best possible experience
- Dress warm in layers (T-shirt, blouse, sweater, and coat).
- Don't forget your bathing suit!
- Take rain protection from February to May.
- Sun protection (SPF 40). Hat or cap even if it is overcast.
- Good walking shoes and an extra pair of socks. (bring sandals)
- Temperature: Day 6° to 18°C/(43° to 65° F)
- This tour includes walking at an approx. altitude of 3100m (10,000 feet).
- If you have any heart condition, please consult your doctor before.
- The water temperature in the hot springs pools fluctuate approx. between 36° to 40° C (97° to 104° F).
- Women in the first or last pregnancy trimester should consult their doctor before using the hot springs.
- People with critical illnesses such as descompensated cardiopathies, serious arterial hypertension, vascular problems, cancer or neoplasias should consult their doctor
- Those who have recently consumed alcohol should not enter the baths, alcohol should not be consumed whilst bathing.
- If dehydrated you should exit the baths and drink plenty of water
- For safety's sake, please consult the medical staff at Termas de Papallacta regarding any doubts or questions you may have or address to your local doctor.
Some Special Highlights
TEMPERATE MONTANE FOREST
Canopy is only about 33-49 feet (10-15 meters). Altitude from 7,544-10,824 feet (2,300-3,300 meters). Cooler area than subtropical montane forest. Precipitation is anywhere between 79"-98" (2,000-2,500 mm). Important bird habitat. Polylepis trees --low, gnarled, flaky-barked trees of the genus Polylepis-- are found here.
THE ISLAND NATURE WALK
This walk is short and for the most part, very easy. It is a round trip of about an hour which gives time for bird watching and resting at the 'paraderos' to admire the beautiful scenery and rushing river. The walk follows the river, crossing it at intervals over small swing bridges, with the opportunity to see birds such as hummingbirds and tanagers. Mosses, ferns, orchids and paramo plants are seen in abundance, and occasionally mammals such as llamas, rabbits and deer and even footprints of the elusive porcupine.
HOT THERMAL SPRING POOLS AT PAPALLACTA
At the hot spring resorts you will experience the wonderfully restorative effects of the crystal clear waters at ten different temperatures. Submerge yourself in the warm water and take advantage of its curative properties for all rheumatic, arthritic, cardiovascular, digestive and respiratory complaints.
The sulfate alkaline terreus thermal waters well out of the earth, and the temperature of the springs at their origins vary from 30 to 70 C (86 and 157 F). The temperature of the pools fluctuates between 36 and 42 C ( 97 and 108F).
Birdwatching on the slopes of the Andean Ranges
Discover Ecuador’s amazing and unrivaled avifauna at our premier birding sites.
Discover Ecuador’s amazing and unrivaled avifauna at our premier birding sites. About the size of the United Kingdom or the State of Colorado in the U.S., Ecuador houses some 1600 species of birds --over half of the species in all of South America; Ecuador is home to the greatest bird diversity, like no other destination in the world.
Ecuador’s fascinating geography and unique landscapes, with easy and comfortable access to all areas, allows for bird watching in the montane and cloud forests surrounding the volcanoes in the high Andes, home to many endemic and stunning birds.
Exploring the Eastern or Western slopes of the Andes you will find different habitats and the greatest biodiversity known in our planet, guided by the most professional, highly experienced bird watching experts.
Departures are flexible, with carefully designed programs and excursions to provide maximum birding and nature experiences. Choose full day, one, two or more night excursions.