One of our very own Latin America For Less travel advisors, Adrienne M., returned from an excursion off the beaten path through the mountains of Ecuador near the town of Baños de Agua Santa. During her trip she explored hidden caves, secluded thermal baths, and even took a leap of faith (literally) as she bungee jumped from a bridge nearly 40 meters (130 feet) high.
Just another day in paradise
Ecuador’s adventure capital
Baños de Agua Santa is nestled in the lush mountains of Ecuador about 170 kilometers (105 miles) south of Quito. “The highlight is all of the adventure tours you can do,” says Adrienne. “Baños is considered the ‘adventure capital’ of the country. There is bungee jumping, whitewater rafting, mountain biking, tours of the volcanoes, and so much more.”
During her 3-day stay in the small town, Adrienne explored natural secrets on a mountain bike excursion, winding through the endless crevices of the caverns, and hiking around the famous active volcano, Mt. Tungurahua.
Baños de Agua Santa: A town of waterfalls
Baños de Agua Santa is known for its hundreds of cascading waterfalls, picturesque mountain backdrop, and therapeutic thermal baths. In fact, the town is regarded as a religious pilgrimage destination mainly for the ideas associated with the miracle healing powers of the thermal baths.
Adrienne comments on the ambiance of Baños, saying, “The mountain scenery was so green. It made you feel like you were in Jurassic Park.” Baños de Agua Santa is part of the Ecuadorian Amazon Basin, and a paradise for nature-lovers.
A leap of faith
Among the many adventure tours of Baños de Agua Santa, bungee jumping makes the top of the list for many thrillseekers. Adrienne decided to experience the rush by taking a “leap of faith” from a bridge over a flowing river. “It was terrifying just before the leap, but when you are in the air you want to do it again right after,” she said. After being strapped in and secured, she closed her eyes, took a deep breath, and dived off the bridge, thinking to herself, “You only live once!”
Find your own Ecuadorian Paradise
Katy is no stranger to the life of an international traveler. After graduate school, Kathleen worked in California in the legal field, but later realized that life was calling her in a different direction. After a short time in Peru, she fell in love with the culture, the people, the food, and the way of life. Now Kathleen calls Lima her “home away from home,” although she frequently visits the warm, sunny northern Peru to see friends and surf.