July 21st Ecuador

by - July 25, 2018

Today is the first day of the Quilotoa loop hike.  There are only 2 morning buses to the tiny town of Sigchos from Latacunga so we decide to take the 6 AM to beat the crowd.  The bus ride was about.  2 hours.   Once we arrived we ate breakfast at a small cafe before starting the hike.  The typical local breakfast is usually coffee, juice, bread, and cheese.  Sometimes it comes with butter and marmalade. If you're really lucky it includes eggs.  It's usually a great deal at around $2-3 each.  We walked through the lazy town and eventually found the trailhead.  The views were instantly amazing.  We also had great weather this day, which is always welcome.  The trail was sometimes a dusty dirt road and sometimes a small footpath.  It wove up and down hills, through pastures, around small farms and homes, and ended in Isinlivi.  It took us 4 hours to hike the 8 miles.  Isinlivi is an even smaller town than Sigchos.  We checked into Llullu Llama Mountain Lodge.  It is our new favorite hostel!  For $20 a night per person it includes breakfast, dinner, yoga, a jacuzzi, animals, and an amazing view.  They were kind enough to give us our own private(ish) room for the same price.  We immediately decided we wanted to stay two nights.  We had a couple drinks at happy hour and met a lot of nice people.  We met an older couple who were traveling the pan American highway in a Honda Element.  He gave us a tour and it made us very jealous.  We both miss the freedom of having our own vehicle.  We also met Lisa and Claus from northern Italy.  They are on the tail end of their year long trip together.  The four of us had a nice chat about the hard parts of traveling long term.  We also met a couple who were biking through South America.  A bunch of us went in the jacuzzi and I'm surprised we did.  It smelled really bad and the water was a muddy brown color.  Once we noticed the blue paint from the walls on our skin we decided to get out.  Everyone sat down and enjoyed dinner together.

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