"Hacienda" is Spanish for estate, referring to a mostly self-sufficent and status-oriented institution. At one time, these estates most likely served a specific purpose. For example, some are former plantations, mines, or factories. Over the course of this trip, you will have the opportunity to stay in these historic structures and experience the life of a "Patròn," or hacienda owner. Wander the surrounding rolling countryside. Horseback ride in deep valleys, offering spectacular views of the unique Andean environment. Learn what it means to live in fully-sustainable isolation, with everything you need right where you are. Talk to locals about their way of life by watching a stained glass artisan produce his craft or a young vendor selling fruit at the lively market. Walk the cobblestone streets of old colonial towns and enjoy a traditional cup of coffee in an open plaza, or munch on "biscochos" in the privacy of your comfortable hacienda.
Andean Ecuador is the definition of picturesque, complete with bubbling creeks, indescribably beautiful estates, and wide, seemingly never-ending spaces. Journey there with us for a cultural exploration of a lesser traveled aspect of this beautiful country.