BAŅOS - ECUADOR
TRAVEL AND TOURS
Baņos lies four hours from the capital city of
Quito; it is a peaceful little city on the slopes of Tungurahua
Volcano at 1,820 meters above sea level. This Andean village is
surrounded by snowcapped volcanoes and has wonderful thermal springs.
The impressive snowcapped volcanic peaks that surround Baņos
are four in number: TUNGURAHUA (5,061m), CHIMBORAZO
(6,310m), ALTAR (5,320m) and CARIHUAIRAZO
Baņos is in a valley forming a "biological corridor"
between two national parks: "Sangay National Park",
facing northward on the right side, named a World Heritage and
a kind of continental "Galapagos"; and, on the left side, "Llanganates
Located in a valley of waterfalls and hot winds in the province
of Tungurahua, Baņos has become an interesting
destination for international travelers seeking a temperate climate
all year round. It has a small-town atmosphere, and is the starting
point for exploring outdoors Ecuador. Four hours by bus from Quito,
Baņos offers adventure sports such as trekking,
horse-trekking, canoeing, mountain climbing and mountain bike.
It also offers easy access to Riobamba, the nearby capital of
the Province of Chimborazo; likewise, it is the starting point
of an exciting train trip that will take us to the coast or to
Puyo, one of the entry points to the Amazon River. Baņos
is also an excellent place to learn Spanish, as its population
is famous for good pronunciation.
During the week, Baņos is a sanctuary of peace
and quiet. The big events here are the occasional traditional
Andes produce fair and the English-spoken film shown nightly in
the movie theater or the town chapel; However, on weekends and
feast days Baņos becomes a "carnival town".
This "mountain-spa" has 13,000 inhabitants, is on the right bank of the Pastaza river, and is one of the few places on Earth where the four primeval elements come together: the fire of the volcanoes, the water of the waterfalls and rivers, the wind and the soil; this creates a kind of energy-giving center that is ideal for enjoying nature and renewing one's vigor.
From the remotest times this place attracted many visitors. It
is a fact that Indian chieftains used to come to Baņos
with their consorts to recover their health after battles. Currently,
travelers from all over the world come here seeking adventure;
some people, deeply impressed by its beauty, have even stayed
to live here.
One of its main attractions is seeing the smoke and ashes spewed forth by the Tungurahua crater form ghostly shapes and present incandescent shows on the horizon, overawing viewers with this really indescribably majestic display of nature's might.
Baņos is a valley surrounded by waterfalls, with
a total of 57. The "Virgin's Fall" is a unique
case in Ecuador of a waterfall within city limits. Another singularly
beautiful fall is "El Manto de la Novia" (Bride's
Veil), with its 80 meter height. However, the most impressive
one is "Pailon del Diablo" or "Rio Verde",
considered to be one of the ten main falls in the world with its
100 or so meter height. Here the water falls sheerly over a gigantic
wall of rock, shaking the ground with its impact. In this beautiful
mountain spa, the Andean forest combines with the high Amazonian
forest, generating an unimaginable biodiversity, and producing
165 recognized native species - the same number that exist on
the Galapagos Islands.
For further information contact:
Oficina de Turismo de Baņos (Baņos Tourism Agency)
Phone/fax: 00593 3 741 050