Ecuador Indian Trails

Ecuador Indian Trails are ancestral routes that have been preserved and that you can visit. These are the hidden roads of Ecuador.


Indian Trails

ecuador indian trails

There are still a few roads in the Ecuadorian Andes where the description of walking in the clouds is very accurate in one way or another.

These are Inca trails that have been preserved and you can still drive through.

Paradoxically, thanks to their being abandoned and forgotten, they have managed to secretly survive the advances of modern urban development and modernization of the current times.

One of the advantages is that along these Ecuador Indian trails, the original plant and animal life has returned and recuperated, due to the nearly absence of heavy traffic, but the villages and towns along the Inca roads remained unchanged, allowing explorers a glimpse of bygone eras.

Those old and lost rural roads, which for centuries were the sole means of communication in the Inca Empire, linking the most important towns and cities, and whose names we read about in history books, are still thriving and refuse to disappear.

It is incredible to realize that these Ecuador Indian trails were built by hand as the use of machinery came only by the mid-20th Century.

The rural trails of Ecuador stem from a principle of connectivity that responded to the basic needs for communication and commerce, in its original form of exchange of products for the subsistence of the indigenous peoples, much before the arrival of the Spanish to America.

The Qhapac √Ďan or Royal Inca Trail is a clear example of this. The Inca roads were perhaps the first routes that were drawn to leave a footprint, so that they would be still used in the future, and along which new routes would be open, as their tracing was along the best and most accessible routes to connect their people.

It is now possible for modern explorers to travel along some Ecuador Indian trails that maintain an aura of magic, history and nature, the Indian roads of Ecuador where time has stopped, where you can be enveloped by the soft clouds that rise from the Pacific Coast to the heights of the Andes Mountains.

It is the place where you can literally walk in the clouds and rediscover the hidden corners of rural Ecuador. Ecuador Indian trails will give you the opportunity of experiencing those essential elements that make Ecuador a unique country. Most of these Inca trails were built in the Andes Mountains.

The Secrets of the Andean Paramos (Moorlands)

The Andean paramos or moorlands are unique from any point of view, as they are found only in South America from Venezuela, through Colombia, Ecuador and Peru at altitudes between 2900 and 5000 meters (9512 and 16400 feet) at the snow-line.

In these remarkable ecosystems, life continues in a vast area covered by shrub vegetation that gently sways to the rhythm of the cool winds of the highlands, in a relaxing wave like movement on the slopes of the mountains, with high snowcapped peaks in the background.

However, their diversity is evident, to the north are the frailejones (from the Espeletia genus and other similar ones) large plants with wide stalks, and rose shaped tops that stand alone and proud like giants in the rough terrain.

But towards the south there are also humid, cloud and rain paramos, especially along the eastern slopes of the Ecuadorian Andes, the most accessible are in Papallacta and the Antisana Reserve

But perhaps the most famous and complex are those of the mythical Cordillera of the Llanganates.

Not only for the difficulty of access but for being the only witnesses to the efforts, failed and fortunate, of the treasure hunters in search of the riches that Inca civilizations hid there on their way to immortality.

Another type of paramo are the dry ones, like those in Chimborazo and Cotopaxi, where there are large straw fields and not much else, so you can see the soil made of sand, like high-altitude deserts.

We invite you to explore the different Ecuador Indian trails, along the Avenue of the Volcanoes with excursions to Papallacta, the Antisana Reserve, the Cotopaxi National Park, Quilotoa Volcano, Cajas National Park near Cuenca, Podocarpus National Park in Loja and the Chimborazo Reserve.

You will have the opportunity to take a close and unhurried look at the magical landscapes of the highlands and walk in the ancestral Ecuador Indian trails that will provide lasting memories.

Recommended Reading

Ecuador & Galapagos (Insight Guides). Click to order from Amazon

Ecuador & Galapagos (Insight Guides)

With 250 photos and tons of great information, this is an essential addition to your pre-Ecuador and -Galapagos reading!

There are better guides if you are only interested in the islands, but for a combination trip taking in Ecuador as well, it's hard to beat.


Birds, Mammals, and Reptiles of the Galapagos Islands. Click to order from Amazon

Birds, Mammals, and Reptiles of the Galapagos Islands

Small enough to fit into your pocket, yet containing comprehensive information and pictures of all the species you will encounter in the islands, this book is a must-have for nature lovers.

Let's face it, Galapagos is largely about the wildlife. This book will NOT disappoint, and you'll have a great memento of your time with the seals, penguins and tortoises!


Galapagos: The Islands That Changed the World. Click to order from Amazon

Galapagos: The Islands That Changed the World

Definitely NOT a tourist's guide, but if you're like me, and find the history and geography of the islands irresistible, then this is a title you ought to invest in.

Stunningly illustrated, and painstakingly researched, those of you who have been there will be enchanted again -- and those of you who have not will begin planning your trip!


Moon Spotlight Galapagos. Click to order from Amazon

Moon Spotlight Galapagos Islands

If you're a seasoned Galapagos regular, then you will probably prefer something weightier.

But for first-timers looking for simple, down-to-earth advice on where to go, what to see and the best shopping and eating on the islands, this is the book for you.

Small, well-priced, and reliable!


Galapagos: Islands Born of Fire. Click to order from Amazon

Galapagos: Islands Born of Fire

The 10th anniversary edition of this photographer's tour of the Galapagos Islands is a stunning book, worthy of anybody's coffee table.

This is a perfect post-trip talking point -- a great way to remember what you've seen, and spread the word amongst your envious friends!


See More About Ecuador

The Capital of Ecuador

The City of Ibarra

Vilcabamba in Loja

More Cities in Ecuador

Economic Galapagos Trips

If you have questions about Ecuador Indian Trails, You can post them on our Ecuador FAQ Page and if you'd like to request more information about our exciting Ecuador Jungle Tours or from our adventure Galapagos Vacation Packages to visit these Islands, You can Contact us here

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