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Dirt Deluxe Self-Guided Tour

6 days

From $2035
See all prices below

70% Dirt

30% Paved (Approximately)

Availability

All Year
Except April 1 - May 15

Accommodations

Premium Exclusive
Hotels and Lodges

Tour Overview

This 6-day self-guided luxury motorcycle tour  / self-drive luxury 4x4 tour crisscrosses the northern Ecuadorian Andes, - a part of the country that still feels enigmatic, subtly inaccessible and not saturated with tourists. It's an area known for its pristine wildlife refuges, coffee plantations, timeworn colonial buildings, and therapeutic hot springs.

The route will bring you to a wide variety of climates, cultures, and elevations.  You'll visit the beautiful cloud forests on the Western Slopes of the Andes, soak in five different unique volcanic hot springs, haggle at the indigenous markets in Otavalo, savor freshly grown coffee from the some of the world's top growers, and revel in the outstanding vistas all along the way.

Each night's accommodations are in carefully selected exclusive, luxury haciendas and wilderness lodges that are as diverse as the terrains you will traverse. The hospitality of each venue has its particular regional character, which is evident in every gesture.

At a glance

  • 6 days / 5 nights
  • Mostly unimproved dirt roads in rural Ecuador - offering a glimpse into ways of life that have largely disappeared
  • Dinner and Breakfast Included - featuring gourmet cuisine that combines tradition with innovation
  • High End, Exclusive, Award-Winning Luxury Accommodations
  • Adventure-ready motorcycles with accessories for comfort and safety
  • Total Distance Covered: approximately 900 km / 560 miles
  • Total Elevation gain/loss 19,658 meters / 64,595 feet
  • Highest Altitude: 4063 meters / 13,300 feet
  • Lowest Altitude: 935 meters / 3068 feet
  • Steepest grade 29.9% (uphill)
  • 30% asphalt road / 70% dirt or cobblestone roads (approximately)
  • Entrance permits to the Coca-Cayamber National Reserve included
  • Includes 24-hour telephone support and roadside assistance

As featured in

Backroads Magazine Logo

Route Map

Elevation Profile

What You Will See

About Our Offroad Tours

Itinerary

Day 1 - Mindo

Elevation Profile - Day 1

 

Dirt Bike Deluxe Motorcycle Adventure Tour in Ecuador Cloudforest Mindo

Day 1
 
Quito - Inti'ñan - Nono - Mindo

Distance Covered:  114 km / 71 miles

museo intinan ecuador offroad 4x4 motorcycle adventure tourYou'll begin this 6-day/5-night adventure from our shop in Quito, Ecuador. In 1978, Quito became the first place on the planet to be designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for having the best-preserved historic center in all of Latin America. Quito is high on the Altiplano Plateau (the second highest in the world) in the Andes at 9,350 feet.  We suggest that you arrive a day or two early to experience our magnificent capital city while getting acclimated to the high altitude before beginning the tour.mindo

During the first morning of the tour, you’ll be outfitted with the motorcycle of your choice and given a thorough orientation answering all questions concerning local customs, rules of the road, riding signals, Ecuadorian driver courtesies, and more. The first day’s ride purposefully includes a sampling of the different types of roads that you will ride.  We will show you how to operate your pre-programmed GPS unit with daily routes and be given a "Road Book" with details and points of interest for each day.  We will provide you with an "emergency kit" containing a pre-paid cell phone, first aid kit, tools, and other items to ensure your ride goes smoothly.  You will have the opportunity to safely become accustomed to asphalt, dry gravel, cobblestone, and dirt farm roads.

pululahua crater motorcycle advrenture tour ecuador 4x4Inti-ñan means “path of the Sun” in the Quechua language and the Inti-ñan Museum is situated directly on the Equator. The indigenous peoples have revered this site for thousands of years. You will learn how ancient people came to understand that this was the center of the world centuries before the advent of modern geography or GPS devices. On the “red line” marking the equator, you will experiment with gravity, including witnessing how water drains either clockwise or counter-clockwise depending on which side of the Equator you are standing. You will also have the opportunity to see how the indigenous populations of Ecuador live by visiting models of their homes. These models will enable you to understand better the cultures and ways of life that you will experience in real life as you pass through various regions.

waterfall on hummingbird road mindo quito suzuki dr650 motorcycle adenture tourDeparting the Inti-ñan Museum, you are now officially outside of the Quito metropolitan region, and have begun riding in the Northern Hemisphere. Your second stop is to view the beautiful Pululahua Crater Geo-Botanical Reserve, a crater formed by a volcanic eruption 2,500 years ago. From there, head onto the western slopes of the Andes that are full of dense, green forests and steep mountains.bird on offroad pacific discovery route ecuador motorcycle dirt bike advrenture tour

You'll turn onto a dirt road that will take you to the small town of Nono. It is here where you will begin your ride into the Nono Biological Reserve. This wildlife refuge is famous as one of the world's most biodiverse places.   It contains the small Andean Spectacled Bear and thousands of species of colorful birds and frogs. 

Stop at the Bellavista Bird Lodge and turn the engines off and sit silently for a couple of minutes and see hundreds of colorful birds surround us and put on a show. 

cacao beans ecuador motorcycle adventure From there you'll drop down into the microclimate of the town of Mindo - a funky cloudforest town with lots of adventure sports and activities available. You can stop to visit an organic chocolate maker to see how raw cacao is grown and transformed into a premium, gourmet chocolate.   Then you'll ride deeper into the cloudforest and check into a private cabin at the Terrazas de Dana Boutique Lodge.

 

Day 2 - Otavalo
Day 3 - Hacienda la Primavera
Day 4 - Aloburo
Day 5 - Papallacta
Day 6 - Quito
Click for Timeline Overview

Travel day to Quito

Arrival in Quito

Travel day to Quito

Accommodations in Quito: Not included.  We will provide you with a list of recommended hotels in Quito near our shop in the heart of the fashionable La Carolina neighborhood so that you can relax and explore the nearby galleries, museums, and cafés.

Travel day to Quito

1 or 2 days prior to the tour start date

Pre-Tour Registration and Tour of Quito

Arrive a day or two prior to departure to enjoy Quito and we'll provide you with tickets on the Hop-on / Hop - Off bus to enjoy a stress-free day in the capital.  For those who want a little more fun, we can provide you with a selfd-guided tour of Quito on one of our 150cc motorscooters. When you stop in, we will process the paperwork so that you'll have an easier departure on Day 1.

Day 1

Quito - Mindo

Distance: 97 km | 60 miles
Included Meals:  Dinner
Activities: EcoRuta del Quinde, Guapambra Waterfall, Bellavista Cloudforest Bird Lodge, Organic Chocolate Factory
Accommodations: Septimo Paraiso Cloudforest Lodge

Day 1

Day 2

Mindo - Otavalo

Distance: 188 km |117 miles
Included Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
Activities: Cascada de la Piragua, Nangulvi Hot Springs, Coffee Growers, Plaza de los Ponchos
Accommodations: Hacienda Cusin

Day 3

Otavalo - Hacienda La Primavera

Distance: 155 Km / 96 miles 
Included Meals: Breakfast and Dinner
Activities: Traditional Leather Maker, Chachimbiro Hot Springs
Accommodations: Hacienda Primavera Wilderness Lodge

Day 3

Day 4

Hacienda La Primavera - Aloburo

Distance: 253 km / 157 miles
Included Meals: Breakfast and Dinner 
Activities:
Coffee Growers, El Angel National Park, Tufiño Hot Springs  

Accommodations: Tunas and Cabras Lodge

Day 5

Aloburo - Papallacta

Distance: 170km | 106 miles 
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Activities: Laguna Yaguarcocha, Paila Ice Cream Maker, Cheese Maker, Quitsato Equator monument, Oyacachi Hot Spring, Coca-Cayambe National Park
Accommodations: Termas Papallacta Hot Springs Spa & Resort

Day 5

Day 6

Papallacta - Quito

Distance:  150 km | 93 miles
Included Meals: Breakfast 

Activities: Enjoy a relaxed morning at Termas De Papallacta Spa Resort, Lago Muerto Pungo

Return to Quito

Return home

Many international flights leave around midnight from Quito.  If you are catching a flight the same evening as the last day of the tour, you may enjoy VIP access to our "Freedom Riders' Lounge" - complete with a hot shower, jacuzzi, gym, and honor bar before your flight home.

Return to Quito

Photo Gallery

What to Expect

This self-guided adventure will start in our offices located in the Carolina neighborhood of Quito.  Prior to your departure, we will provide you with a detailed and thoughtful presentation on Ecuadorian rules of the road, customs, and courtesies. We will instruct you on how to operate your pre-programmed GPS navigation unit. We will hand you a packet that includes your prepaid hotel vouchers and daily map sheets. The roadbook will provide you with points of interest, descriptions of local highlights, and "hidden gems" that aren't common knowledge.  You can use this information to tailor your days - including as much or as little as you like. The route will be reviewed with you in detail to provide you with additional useful information about the timing, suggestions for lunch stops and where to get gas along the way.  

On the morning of your departure, you will be outfitted the off-road-capable motorcycle (or 4x4) of your choice. The vehicle is fitted with a waterproof luggage system, a first aid kit, a tankbag (if you want one), spare innertubes (or tire repair kit) and a set of tools. Besides, you will have a prepaid cell phone to call us for support at any time during your trip.  We will carefully review the bike with you using our multi-point checklist to be sure that everything is in perfect working order before your departure. We will be sure that you know what to do in case of an emergency or breakdown.

You may use our lockers and storage area to store your luggage and belongings that you will not take with you on the ride.

The route you will follow over the next six days is based on several years' of experience and riding these routes many times on our guided version of the tour.  The route is not highly technical. It is a dual-sport tour, meaning there is a mix of paved backroads and dirt natural, unimproved dirt roads without gravel.  There are several stops available which are marked on the GPS unit and the daily route sheets.  You should be aware that there is one long riding day. You will be traveling in areas where access to medical care may be several hours away.

You will have many opportunities for amazing photos and stops in remote villages where visitors are very rare. Locals are friendly, and the areas visited are very safe with very low crime rates. 

During your ride, Ecuador Freedom staff will monitor your daily progress using an onboard GPS satellite tracking system. We can assist you by telephone if you need to change your route, need roadside assistance, or help in any way.

Upon returning, you will have access to our honor bar, jacuzzi, hot shower, and staff that can assist you with your next destination.

Weather and Temperatures

Weather and temperature ranges in Ecuador are generally the same year-round. In the highlands, you can expect the chance of passing showers but rarely a full day of rain.  Chances for a full day of rain are more likely on the western slopes of the Andes in March, April and early May. We do not recommend this tour during April and early May.  This ride will be in elevations of about 3,000 feet/ 900 meters (where temperatures can be around 80 degrees Fahrenheit) to about 13,500 feet (where temperatures can be in the 30's Fahrenheit). Dressing in layers is recommended.  Please see this article for more information about the weather in Ecuador. 

Accommodations
Throughout the tour, you will stay in carefully selected, high-end accommodations with many amenities and in upgraded, superior rooms or suites. See this page for details, photos, and links to the accommodations provided.  Dinner and breakfast are included for each accommodation. Ecuador Freedom has the right to substitute accommodations of equal quality due to availability and will notify you of these changes.

Packing List and Preparation
Ecuador Freedom will provide you with detailed information to prepare for the ride, including a packing list.  You should know how to make general motorcycle repairs and maintenance and to be able to change an innertube (click for a video tutorial).  Before you travel, we recommend that you familiarize yourself in advance with these recommended guidebooks and maps.

Accommodations on this Tour

Accommodations on this tour

Our accommodations are selected for their exceptional quality, location, and unique character. Below are the accommodations featured on this tour.

Video - How We Select Accommodations

Full Tour Videos

Dates and Pricing

Prices



Dirt Deluxe Self-Guided Tour
Standard Pricing
1 Room 1 Rider
Single Occupancy
1 Pillion or Passenger Sharing Room with Rider
Double Occupancy
2 People 2 Bikes Sharing Room - Discounted Price as 2nd Bike
Double Occupancy
Yamaha XT250$2,135n/a$1,365
BMW G310GS$2,255$795$1,485
BMW G310GS (LOWERED)$2,255$795$1,485
Suzuki DR650$2,375n/a$1,605
Suzuki DR650 (LOWERED)
 
$2,375n/a$1,605
SWM RS 650R$2,375n/a$1,605
Yamaha Ténéré XT660$2,655$795$1,845
Husqvarna 701 Enduro$2,715n/a$1,905
BMW F700 GS$2,655$795$1,845
BMW F750 GS
 
$2,615$795$1,905
Triumph Tiger 800XC$2,775$795$1,965
BMW F800GS$2,775$795$1,965
BMW F850GS$2,835$795$2,025
Honda Africa Twin CRF1000$2,835$795$2,025
Honda Africa Twin CRF1000 DCT$2,835$795$2,025

4x4
Jeep Wrangler$2,955$795$2,145
Volkswagen Amarok $3,075$795$2,295
Ford Ranger Diesel
 
$3,075$795$2,295

Dates - Availabilty
What's Included
What's Not Included
Booking and Cancellation Policy

Available Extensions

Add additional rest days to your trip to relax and explore the area on your own.  Simple, flat fees include extra lodging, breakfast and vehicle rental fees.

Septimo Paraiso, Mindo

Septimo Paraiso Cloudforest Reserve Lodge

Add an extra rest day in Mindo. Flat Fee: $300

Termas de Papallacta

Termas de Papallacta

Add an additional day, staying in a private cabin with hot springs at the Termas de Papallacta Lodge. Flat Fee: $400

Galapagos Cruise

Galapagos Cruise

We work with the the longest-running cruise operator in the Galapagos and offer our tour customers special reduced pricing on permium tours in the Galapagos of 4,5 and 8 day cruises.

Please let us know if you would like more info


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