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Birding Northern Ecuador: Mountains of Magic

Renowned for its abundance of colorful tanagers, hummingbirds, toucans, and antpittas, Ecuador hosts a myriad of diverse habitats and landscapes that will astound you. On this wonderful 11-day expedition, Birding Man Adventures and several local guides will introduce you to Ecuador's central highlands, western and eastern Andean slopes. The perfect tour for the "relaxed birder," we'll provide you every opportunity to find your target birds while also giving you the option to lay back and explore on your own. You can also feel good about supporting community-based organizations on this adventure of a lifetime.  



$2900/person double occupancy

$600 single supplement


Mariscal Sucre Quito International Airport


October 1 - 11, 2024


5 - 7 participants


This tour is designed for intermediate to advanced birders and photographers. We consider the difficulty level to be moderate, with most of the birding being close to roadsides and trails with slight uphills and downhills. Expect early morning starts, but we will allow plenty of time for rest and relaxation at the lodges 


Ten nights accommodation at 4 different eco-lodges, in-country transportation, professional guides, most meals (see not included below), water, and tips


Flights, drinks and alcoholic drinks, three dinners in Mindo, trip insurance, souvenirs, and personal services (laundry, minibar expenses, phone calls, massages, etc.) 


A packing list will be provided for all trip participants


Quito is located at 9,350 ft; 2,850 m above sea level). Highest elevations will be reached at Papallacta Pass (14,700 ft; 5400 m above sea level) on Day 3. Please consult with your doctor if you have medical conditions that may be exacerbated at high elevations. You may experience some minor irritations such as a slight headache and mild dizziness, but symptoms should disappear as we descend to lower elevations. You may consider taking Diamox (Acetazolamide) and/or Acetaminophen before traveling to higher elevations, but please consult your doctor.  Eat a lighter meal before heading to higher altitude, stay well-hydrated, and try to avoid caffeine and alcohol


Ecuador is generally a safe country to visit. However, it has recently been in the news due to increased gang-related activity near Guayaquil and several coastal cities.  The US Department of State currently designates Ecuador as Level 2: Exercise increased caution. We have been actively communicating with Ecuadorian residents and friends currently living in Ecuador are confident that the areas we will visit on this trip remain safe. We continue to be vigilant regarding safety, as it is our utmost priority, and if at any point in time safety conditions change and we deem them to be unsafe in the areas we will travel to, we will cancel the trip immediately. Please read our cancelation policy on our Multi-day Trip Registration Page.     


Day 1

Centro Historico - Quito, Ecuador

Day 2

  • Chakana Condor Reserve

  • Antisana Reserve

  • Return to Puembo Birding Garden

Ecuadorian Hillstar

Day 3

Rufous-bellied Seedsnipe

Day 4

  • Birding Rio Quijos farms and forests

  • Templo del Buho Reserve 

  • Return to Rio Quijos Eco-lodge

Rio Quijos Eco-Lodge

Day 5

  • Birding Rio Quijos farms and forests

  • Vida del Kinde Reserve

  • Return to Rio Quijos Eco-lodge

Wire-crested Thorntail (by Manuel Omar Muñoz Guerrero
Birdwatchers Valle del Quijos

Day 6

Papallacta Hot Springs, Ecuador

Day 7

Ecuador's western cordillera

Day 8

  • Optional rest day in Mindo

  • Birding at Tandayapa Lodge

  • Birding at Bellavista Lodge

  • Return to Casa de Alta Vista

Sword-billed Hummingbird (photo by Omar Muñoz)

Day 9

  • Optional rest day in Mindo

  • Recinto 23 de Junio (Umbrellabird)

  • Milpe Bird Reserve

  • Return to Casa de Alta Vista

Wattled Umbrellabird

Day 10

  • Paz de las Aves (Pittas)

  • Maraksasha Bird Reserve

  • Transfer to hotel near airport

Recinto 23 de Junio

Day 11

  • Breakfast at hotel

  • Transfer to airport

  • Departure

Please note that this itinerary cannot be 100% guaranteed, as it is only a rough guide and can be changed due to factors such as availability of accommodation, updated information on the state of accommodation, roads, or birding sites, the discretion of the guides and other factors. 

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