Time seems to move slowly in Vilcabamba. Perhaps that’s why its residents are said to be the oldest in the country. With a handful of relaxing spas and a hippy vibe, Vilcabamba is as close as you can get to the fountain of youth while traveling in Ecuador.
Vilcabamba is ingrained in Ecuadorian folklore as a place where residents are said to live upwards of 120 years old. In fact, town’s oldest residents are fit and jovial, but most are under the 100-year mark. Upon arrival in Vilcabamba, it’s clear why people here are said to live so long—the tranquil town emanates a sense of peacefulness and relaxation.
Situated at around 5,000 feet (1,524 m), Vilcabamba has one of the lowest elevations in the Sierras. The town is surrounded by precipitous, lush hillsides. A warm, dry breeze continually rushes through the valley, making perfect conditions for travelers and locals alike. A handful of quiet spas and hot springs promise to help visitors add years to their life.
There are numerous hiking and horseback riding opportunities around Vilcabamba. Additionally, the southern entrance to the Podocarpus National Park is located just outside of town.