Otavalo is THE place to be to make your last shopping before coming back to your home town. I won’t lie to you; I assure you will find there items to make your luggage heavier…
Obviously, I wasn’t the exception which confirms the rule. For you to have a brief idea, I came back home with 2 bright colored ponchos, an embroidered scarf and a hand bag according to the latest local fashion.
This lively market is vibrant and exciting. It offers you a variety of possibilities such as indulging yourself in local food, admiring paintings with bright palletes, or listening music while buying clothing.
It’s such a treat to find out what is hidden behind this agitation and emulation.
Later, you will have choice between staying in Otavalo, or going to Cotacachi for the lunch. There, you could enjoy the famous and typical “Locro de papa”, Ecuadorian soup made with potatoes, avocado and cheese. This excellent dish might delight your taste buds!
This enchanting city is also well known nationwide thanks to its artisanal leather. Consumers of these products could find a thoughtful gift, one which might be considered as a treasure once back home.
Do not hesitate bargaining prices but be reasonable, each work deserves an honest reward.
The Gray Line Ecuador touch:
Such a perfect blue sky and sunny day when I discovered this green house!
The first step of the trip there is walking along roses. Really nice time thanks to the owner, who gives the highest quality information about the Ecuadorian roses specifically. As you know, Ecuador is located in the middle of the world. This fact allows roses to receive the best weather conditions. That’s why only after 90 days, producers cut flowers to pack and send them all round the world. You might be surprised discovering on the red open buttons a “cap”. I learnt that was a way to protect roses, especially from direct sunlight which turns their red stain to a darkest one (black is not that a famous color for flowers in European countries, Russia or even in Northern America).
Then I went to the place where people prepare bunches of flower. Arriving there, you will be welcomed by mixed fruity and spicy fragrances. You could also admire these employers working with such rapidity and incredible accuracy.
The last part of the visit was dedicated to the shipments preparation. Yes, you will go in a huge cold room with just 4 small degrees, but full of colors. So no regrets!
At the end of the tour, I left with a smile on my face and a rose in my hand.
My favorite time in this tour:
I especially keep in my mind the 10 minutes stop I had in Puerto Lago. At this place it was possible to consider this beautiful lake in the skirt of the Imbabura Volcano, overhung by a magnificent blue sky.
Moreover, if you are lucky we will meet these 2 young boys with their lama. I swear, better than seeing them on a post card!
Personally, the best moment that I had in this tour fitted with the arrival of 3 little indigenous girls. They came with us in the bus for the last 15 driving minutes, to reach Otavalo. Some traditional songs (one with a young man convincing a young woman to marry him as he will take good care of her) and explanations about their local clothing made this moment unique.
Now, it’s your turn … Find your own favorite moment and tell us!
Of course if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask me!
PS: My name is Audrey and I am in Ecuador to do my internship at Gray Line Ecuador. I wanted to share with you my tours experience, so if you want to write me feel free to do it =)