Ecuador Mountains

Ecuador is blessed with impressive mountains thanks to the Andean Mountain Range (or Andes), which run north to south through the country. In total, there are some 22 peaks higher than 13,800 feet (4,200 m) — many of which are volcanoes. Some of Ecuador's large cities, including Quito, are found within intermountain basins.

Banos Ecuador

Central Sierra

Zip lining is a popular way to explore the mountainsides. Baños has a zip line that’s over a mile long that offers an incredible view of the lush surroundings. Test your daring even more on a canyoning tour, where you can rappel down the face of a waterfall near the Río Blanco. Although the trails can get quite narrow, Baños does provide some opportunity for mountain biking.

Riobamba Ecuador

Central Sierra

This is also a center of Andean culture. It’s surrounded by rural communities that farm on the mountainsides and ply their traditional crafts at outdoor markets. Indigenous people here speak the Quechua language.

When you're ready to head into the mountains, choose from hikes at the Chimborazo Reserve, Cotopaxi National Park, and Sangay National Park. Many of the peaks in this area are too challenging for casual hikers, but they make the surrounding grasslands especially breathtaking places to explore on hikes and nature tours.

If you're serious about exploring the mountains, consider signing up for a multi-day trip. On these types of tours, guides provide all the equipment you need to reach the summit. You'll need special shoes, ice picks, and some physical fitness, but it’s worth the effort to see a sunrise from near the summit of a volcano.