BAÑOS and Swing at the end of the world Travel Guide ✩ Ecuador!
Check out our Video about Baños de Agua Santa : “Explore Baños ✩ Ecuador!”
Today we take you to the adventurous Baños in Ecuador!
A little town surrounded by mountains, waterfalls, adventures and the active Volcano Tungurahua!
The town Baños de Agua Santa
Baños is a small town in Ecuador famous mainly for the adventurous activities that are offered in its surroundings. The town itself has a beautiful basilica, waterfalls at its edges, hot springs, good food and great cafès, but mainly is full of tour agencies that will offer you all the possible activities in the beautiful nature surrounding the town!
One experience that will take your visit to the next level is to try the typical Ecuadorian Cuy!
I believe that once you are in a new country you should always try their most traditional food, it is something that will take your understanding of that culture to the next level!
When I saw the Cuy for the first time, I thought “maybe I don’t want to know that much about this culture”, but then I remembered when I tried grasshopper in Mexico, so I said “let’s do it!”
Luckily they serve it in pieces, so you will not have to see the Cuy’s face staring at you while you eat it, and I have to say it is very GOOD!
You can find them roasting just outside the market; 4$ for a piece or 10$ for 3 pieces with rice and potatoes.
Baños is full of swings that will take your breath away!
The most famous one is the “swing at the end of the world” that became famous after winning a National Geographic photo contest in 2014.
Make sure to bring your camera and take a breathtaking picture!
The swing is attached to a tree house, this is why the tour is also called “tree house tour“.
After a long period of inactivity the Thungurahua entered into an eruptive phase in 1999. This phase still continues today with the last eruption being in March 2016.
A great way to check out the volcano, if you don’t feel like hiking, is actually from the tree house, maybe when you are swinging around. 🙂
All around the town you will be able to see beautiful waterfalls.
The most impressive one is the “Cascada Pailon del Diablo“!
You can get there with a “Chiva” (a big colored musical bus) that includes other waterfalls on the way.
Before getting to the Cascada the bus will stop at a place where you can do Zip-lining or walk on a Tibetan bridge for an extra charge. We personally thought this was a little pricy and didn’t want to wait for the other people in the group to do it, so we asked to another Chiva that was leaving if we could go with them.
Once you get there the guide will take you to the entrance that leads to the top of the waterfall.
Some people told us that the south entrance was better and you have the possibility to get behind the waterfall itself! So we asked for the other entrance, which is just on the other side of the river, left the group and loved the experience.
ALERT: going this way we lost our “tour” and ride back to Baños, so we just hitchhiked on the way back, that I have to say we did more than once.
When I say adventure time in Baños it means: rafting, canyoning, biking, hiking, zip lining, horseback riding, rock climbing, trekking, kayaking, paragliding and of course tours in the jungle!
We went canyoning and on the jungle tour with the Safe Destiny tour agency.
The canyoning was 2-3 hours of morning fun, where we descended a river and did a small zip lining.
Be ready to get wet and wild!
Tip: The tour company provides you with specialist clothing for these activities.
Our Jungle tour was a 1-day trip, but we recommend if possible staying longer. You will have the possibility to go deeper into the jungle which means you will be able to see a larger variation of animals and sleep out in nature.
During the day we:
Visited an animal refuge center where they rescue wild animals which were kept illegally and sometimes mistreated. They are given medical treatment which helps them to recover and build strength so they are able to be released back into the wild;
Had a canoe ride down the scenic Rio Pastaza;
Walked 2 hours in the jungle and the guide explained the different plants with medicinal properties;
Went on a swing in the jungle;
Swam in a hidden waterfall in the jungle;
Visited an indigenous Quichua community, where we drank “Chicha” (a typical South American drink) and practiced the blowgun;
TIPS & INFO:
Swing at the end of the world:
To get there you can take a “Chiva” from the center of Baños. The ride is about 40-50 min and costs 1$ for the bus and 1$ to enter.
Translation English – Spanish:
“The swing at the end of the world” = “El Columpio del fin del mundo”
“The Tree house” = “La Casa del Árbol”
Hot Springs: The one at the bottom of a waterfall on the side of Banos which is visible from the city, called “Las Piscinas de La Virgen”. To enter the pool during the day there is a charge of 2$ and 3$ during the night. Open 5am – 4:30pm and 6pm – 9:30pm.
Price 1 day Jungle trip: 35$
Price Canyoning: 20$