Jessica N., Oct. 17, 2023
The views at Quilotoa, riding in the cloud forest, visiting a local blueberry winery, dancing in the kitchen with the owners of Bombili, finding a surprise waterfall, playing futbol with school children, and experiencing the variety of bright and warm mornings but rainy and cool afternoons were all highlights of the trip. However, what was truly special was all of the hours we were able to spend riding incredible horses each day, enjoying the vast and gorgeous landscape of Ecuador, and getting to know our hosts, Gabriel and Patty, as well as all of the members of their special team. By the end of the trip I felt like I was part of the family.
Mia K., June 13, 2023
It was over my expectations. The main host (where we started and ended the holiday): hacienda, food, horses and general
hospitality was excellent. The 2-day ride out and overnighter to the Cloud Forest was beautiful and although the
accommodation was basic (no electricity etc.) it was a delight as it was situated in the forest and the hosts were delightful, it felt like a home stay which added lots of charm. The 4-day ride with 3 overnighters to the volcanoes was a totally different experience being higher up and with that the scenery changed. It was simply spectacular. It was super nice to have these holidays within the holidays and after each ride the return to the Hacienda La Alegria felt like coming home. The horses were excellent, safe, sure footed, but not in the least boring.
Dianne M., Feb. 2, 2023
The holiday was fabulous. Our hosts were wonderful, the hacienda was gorgeous and the horses were amazing. The horses were in good health, incredible shape, nice looking, very responsive and non-spooky. The saddles were very comfortable with the sheepskins. Both the owner, his cousin and the guide were fabulous guides. We felt very safe and well taken care of... and they were all gracious hosts. Favourite memory? Waking up in the morning to discover that we had ridden to the base of Cotopaxi, and there she was! It was cloudy when we rode in the previous night so we had no idea she was right there!
Katie R., Dec. 12, 2022
This riding holiday was adventurous while remaining comfortable and very well-fed. Even though I ended up seeing only a small part of Ecuador I felt like I had a good feeling for the culture and country as a whole. I most enjoyed the first and second days of the Quilotoa trail where we climbed to a high altitude and saw distant snowy peaks and had a few long canters. The second day I enjoyed the small trails to the top of the crater through pine forests and canyons where we were able to see an owl. The guides were excellent and always happy to help with questions or issues.
Noelle R., Dec. 12, 2022
Awesome horses, hosts, food and accommodations. We were continuously riding into a new landscape and being awed by the beauty with a fantastic group of horses and friends. We were very well fed. I loved trying all the Ecuadorian soups and couldn't get enough of the sale de aji. The hacienda is gorgeous and we stayed in some very cool hostels. I LOVED every horse! I was able to ride 5 over the week and got to be paired with my favourite handsome buckskin Desafio the most. But it was fun to dance with other partners include a few paso finos for the first time and to gait smoothly instead of trot on day 8 - wow!
Martin W., Aug. 16, 2022
A unique adventure! Excellent horses, excellent hosts and excellent accommodation in the spectacular high Andes mountains. The holiday enabled breath-taking experiences - riding quality horses through orchid-laden cloud forests, climbing high volcanoes and experiencing rural life in Ecuador.
T and C, July 11, 2022
The ride was wonderful. It was challenging, even for my wife, let along a beginner like me and the views spectacular. The mountain flowers were beautiful and we were lucky with the weather with cloud broken with sunshine. We got to see Cotopaxi, but it teased us with the summit being covered in cloud until late in the day. Over the previous days I had learnt a new way to canter and what fun we all had as we whizzed over the grasslands at 3,500m surrounded by volcanoes. Tambopaxi was a great place to spend the night and I was up at dawn walking the high plains catching the changing light on the volcano - it was beautiful.
Janice and Larry, Jan. 4, 2022
It was a great trip – excellent hosts, food, horses, tack, and additional riding gear. Gabriel and his assistant Jose Luis were warm and incredibly helpful, ensuring we were safe and comfortable throughout our adventure. The horses were more than up for the challenge and seemed to enjoy the journey as much as we did. Gabriel is a true horseman and clearly loves his horses. He takes great pride in having bred, raised, and trained most of them himself. He can tell you each one’s parents or origin, and paired Larry and I with horses befitting our abilities and preferences.
Sara, Jan. 8, 2020
The holiday was great. It surpassed my expectations, the ride to Quilitoa was beautiful. The horses were amazing and the scenery was fantastic. I had a couple of days at the Hacienda before the ride and those were also wonderful, I’d highly recommend this ride. My favourite memory was travelling as a group with several free horses was really nice each day moving through the beautiful countryside and small villages. Everyday had amazing scenery and varied terrain.
Melinda C. (Volcano Ride), Nov. 17, 2016
I loved my trip. it was amazing. A very enriching experience with views of the landscape that varied in great detail. The lodges were really awesome - Fireplaces everywhere! The food was so good! Gabriel (host) was awesome and his wife Patty, so gracious. Overall a wonderful place to stay and the ride... it was a real adventure, never to be forgotten. No rushing to meet deadlines, and it was just a very enriching experience, all the way around. So glad I went there!!!! Loved it!