Cartagena to Quito on a Shoestring

Colombia is an underrated country for travellers, but with our safe, social, and budget-friendly group trips, we want to change that. After all, theres so much culture and beauty to this region that it would be a shame to let it go unexplored plus you can say you got here before everyone else. Over two and a half weeks, youll go from Colombia to Ecuador, hiking to the Lost City of Teyuna, relaxing on warm beaches, and checking out Medelln and Bogot. With two flights included, youre sure to find something you love in this hidden gem of a country.

Latin America

Duration: 19 Days Guaranteed Departure: Yes
For lovers of: Physical rating: Demanding
Accommodation standard:   Not Rated% Traveller Tour Rating: 0%  
Your Guide: English speaking Tour code: 145609
Starts: Cartagena, Colombia Finishes: Quito, Ecuador
You will visit
  • Cartagena
  • Quito



Day 1: Cartagena

Arrive at any time.

Included Activities:
Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting


Day 2: Cartagena (1B)

Free day to explore this coastal colonial city. Explore the historic old town, check out the San Felipe fortress, or get dirty with a mud bath and massage at Totumo Volcano.


Day 3: Cartagena/Santa Marta (1B)

Travel by public bus to this coastal port town. Free time to visit the Gold Museum with its collection of Lost City artifacts, chill out on the beach and pick up any last minute necessities for the upcoming trek.

Additional Notes:
Please note hot water is uncommon in the Caribbean region of Colombia. Showers are likely to only have cold water while visiting this area.

Local bus (4.00 hour(s))


Day 4: Santa Marta/Adán Camp (1L, 1D)

Transfer to Machete Pelao, where the trek to the Lost City of Teyuna begins. Trek for 4-5 hrs each day through farmland, steamy jungle, and rural Kogi communities. Get a glimpse into the local way of life in the remote river valleys of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

Included Activities:
Lost City Trek Day 1



Day 5: Adán Camp/ Wiwa Camp (1B, 1L, 1D)

The route starts along the Buritaca River, taking you further into the vivid green jungle past small villages en route to the camp for the evening. After a long day of trekking, enjoy a refreshing dip in one of the natural swimming pools.

Included Activities:
Lost City Trek Day 2


Day 6: Wiwa Camp /Teyuna Paraiso Camp (1B, 1L, 1D)

Continue trekking along the route to Ciudad Perdida. Today is a tough portion of the trek with a lot of steep inclines, make sure to rest and take in the beautiful views.

Included Activities:
Lost City Trek Day 3


Day 7: Teyuna Paraiso Camp/ Wiwa Camp (1B, 1L, 1D)

Get started early to climb the 1,200 steps up to the Lost City. The view of the surrounding Sierra Nevada Mountains makes it well worth the hike. Explore the Lost City and learn what is known of its origins from your guide, before making the descent back to Wiwa Camp for the night.

Included Activities:
Lost City Trek Day 4


Day 8: Ciudad Perdida/Taganga (1B, 1L)

After a final morning trek back to Machete Pelao, transfer to the fishing village of Taganga for an afternoon of rest and relaxation.

Included Activities:
Lost City Trek Day 5



Day 9: Taganga/Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona (1B, 1D)

Enjoy an overnight excursion to beautiful Tayrona NP. Explore the park's lush greenery, extended beaches and turquoise Caribbean waters.

Private Vehicle (0.75 hour(s))


Day 10: Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona/Taganga (1B)

Enjoy a half-day in the park, then return to Taganga for one more night on the Caribbean.

Private Vehicle


Day 11: Taganga/Medellín (1B)

Fly inland to infamous Medellín, now one of Latin America's safest cities. Enjoy an orientation walk upon arrival and an optional night out with the group.

Included Activities:
Orientation Walk



Day 12: Medellín/Bogotá

Opt to go paragliding over the city or catch a ride on the cable car. Board a night bus to Bogotá.

Overnight bus (9.00-10.00 hours)


Day 13: Bogotá

Orientation walk around the vibrant La Candelaria area. Free time to explore Colombia's capital city; check out the riches at the Gold Museum, take a funicular car up Monserrate Hill for sweeping views of the city, or catch a fútbol (soccer) match if it's game day.

Included Activities:
Orientation Walk


Day 14: Bogotá (1B)

Enjoy a second day to explore Colombia's capital.


Day 15: Bogotá/Otavalo (1B, 1D)

Fly to Quito and transfer to Otavalo and spend one night at an indigenous community. Interact with the locals and learn about their traditional ways during a homestay. Opt to enjoy a cultural evening and show with typical food.

Included Activities:
Indigenous Community Homestay

Plane (4.00 hour(s))
Private Vehicle (2.00 hour(s))


Day 16: Otavalo/Cotopaxi

Visit the famous Otavalo artisan market for a morning perusing colourful textiles, art, carvings and jewelry made by people from nearby communities. Afternoon bus to Cotopaxi to enjoy a couple of nights in Andean beauty.

Included Activities:
Otavalo Handicrafts Market Visit

Local bus (2.00 hour(s))
Private Vehicle (2.00 hour(s))


Day 17: Cotopaxi (1B)

Opt to visit a lagoon at elevation, hike national park trails or go down Cotopaxi Volcano by mountain bike.

Included Activities:
Cotopaxi National Park Visit


Day 18: Cotopaxi/Quito (1B)

Enjoy the morning in Cotopaxi before travelling back to Quito for an orientation walk and optional night out.

Included Activities:
Orientation Walk

Private Vehicle (2.00 hour(s))


Day 19: Quito (1B)

Depart at any time.

Additional Notes:
Consider booking additional nights in Quito for further exploration of Ecuador's capital city.

Included Activities:
Departure Day

    • 5-day Lost City of Teyuna trek
    • Overnight excursion to Tayrona NP (excluding November departures)
    • Beach time in Taganga
    • Visit to Otavalo Market
    • Orientation walks in Medellin, Bogotá, and Quito
    • Internal flights
    • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities
    • Simple hotels (11 nts), camping (5 nts, hammocks or rustic bunks), overnight bus (1 nt), homestay (1 nt)
    Meals Included
    • 14 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 6 dinners
    • Local bus, 4x4, boat, hiking, plane, minibus
    Group Leader
    • Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides
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Tour Highlights:
  • Trek to the Lost City of Teyuna
  • Party in Colombian cities
  • Get active in Cotopaxi
  • Experience local life in an Ecuadorian homestay.