Add dates

Things to do in Otavalo

Our most recommended things to do in Otavalo

From Quito: Otavalo Indian Market and Rose Farm Shared Tour

1. From Quito: Otavalo Indian Market and Rose Farm Shared Tour

Depart from the meeting point in Quito and head towards the colorful town of Otavalo and the most famous Indian fair in South America. During the drive, get unforgettable views of peoples and communities, while conducting their activities and daily life. Stop at a rose plantation to learn all about the fifth main industry of Ecuador. Experience every step about the process of growing, harvesting, and exporting roses to all over the world. During your visit, admire and photograph the beautiful valleys and snow-capped mountains that are surrounding this worldwide-known region. Then, go to the viewpoint of the Laguna San Pablo, at the foothills of Imbabura volcano. Afterward, you'll arrive at the Otavalo Indian market or “Plaza de Ponchos” showing varied handmade indigenous crafts all through the main streets of the town. After lunch, explore Cotacachi village, rich in the production of fine leather garments, which are displayed and sold in small shops along the center of the city. Finish off with a drive uphill towards Cuicocha Lake, located inside the crater of Cotacachi volcano (16,200 feet), before traveling back to Quito in the evening.

Otavalo and Imbabura Sightseeing Tour from Quito

2. Otavalo and Imbabura Sightseeing Tour from Quito

Depart Quito and journey towards the Guayllabamba valley to visit Cayambe town. Pass over the line of the equator and continue towards the largest indigenous market in South America. Shop for souvenir textiles and traditional crafts at the Mercado de Ponchos, where the locals sell tagua nut jewelry, fake shrunken heads, hand-painted trays, spices, spools of wool and other interesting items under mushroom-shaped umbrellas. Get back to nature at the Peguche waterfall, popular with the locals who go there to take a sacred bath on the eve of Inti Raymi. Continue towards to visit Ñanda Mañachi cultural house, here you will learn more about people from Otavalo.

Otavalo: Full day trip from Quito

3. Otavalo: Full day trip from Quito

Benefit from pick-up at your hotel in Quito, and then journey by private vehicle towards the lively indigenous bazaar of Otavalo Market. Make brief stops at the village of Guayabamba and get an amazing view of San Pablo Lake and the surrounding landscape. Try some of the local biscochos (cookies) typical of the region along the way. Visit a weaving workshop in Peguche to learn about the handmade artisanal products and clothes typical of the region. Get back on the road to arrive at Otavalo Market and join the locals who come to sell their wares at the most spectacular market in Latin America. Buy unique souvenirs or just watch the hustle and bustle of the market vendors. Make your way to the beautiful crater lake of Cuicocha at the foot of Cotacachi Volcano. Return to Quito at the end of a day full of activities and get dropped off at your hotel.

Otavalo: Private Tour from Quito

4. Otavalo: Private Tour from Quito

Otavalo is a gorgeous and enchanted town. You can embark upon a complete tour for which you can customize your itinerary but the program below is the most recommended. It is also possible to make a stop at a rose farm and get an explanation of the growing process. Otavalo city is Ecuador's most representative city in the Highlands due to its amazing handicraft work, beautiful lakes, falls, delicious gastronomy and very kind and polite people. Itinerary  8:00 AM: Pickup at hotel in Quito and start driving to Otavalo10:00 AM: Coffee or chocolate and local biscochos at Lago San Pablo11:00 AM: Visit to the Condor park including a bird show with Eagles and Hawks12:30 PM: Visit to Otavalo’s market and have local lunch2:30 PM: Visit to Cotacachi’s leather town or Peguche waterfall4:00 PM: Drive back to Quito Note: All hours are approximate, except for the starting time.

From Quito: 10-Day Ecuador Highlights Private Tour

5. From Quito: 10-Day Ecuador Highlights Private Tour

Immerse yourself in Ecuadorian culture with a 10-day trip through the country's must-sees. Learn about local history as you stroll through the streets of Quito, Riobamba, and Cuenca. Marvel at the majesty of Cotopaxi Volcano, Quilotoa Lake, the Pailón del Diablo waterfalls, and more magical sites. Day 1 - Overnight in QuitoGet picked up at your chosen location in Quito and begin your adventure by exploring the Old Town. Discover the Basílica del Voto Nacional, La Compañía, El Panecillo, Plaza Grande, and Intiñam Museum. Enjoy the unique chance to stand at the Middle of the World monument. Day 2 - Overnight in QuitoSurround yourself with nature on a tour of the Mindo-Nambillo Ecological Reserve, the land of hummingbirds, and the paradise of butterflies. Walk through the forest with your guide and come across a variety of plants, then taste some local chocolate. Day 3 - Overnight in QuitoTake a day trip to two neighboring towns. Watch Ecuadorian culture come alive in Otavalo, and see the artisans that come to the main square every day to sell their products. Head over to Cotacachi, a town known for its leather production. Day 4 - Overnight in Cotapaxi ProvinceDepart from Quito and stop by the striking Cotopaxi Volcano. Experience the beauty of this rural area, marvel at panoramic views from the volcano, and spend the night in the Cotapaxi province. Day 5 - Overnight in Baños de Agua SantaDive even deeper into the beautiful natural landscapes of the area with a visit to Quilotoa, a crater with a gorgeous tranquil lake inside of it. Enjoy a walking tour around the crater, then continue to Baños de Agua Santa. Day 6 - Overnight in RiobambaGet your adrenaline pumping with the incredible outdoor attractions in Baños de Agua Santa. Seize the chance to. go zip lining, ride a cable car, and admire famous waterfalls, such as the Pailón del Diablo falls. Discover the incredible tree house with a giant swing. Afterward, drive to Riobamba. Day 7 - Overnight in AlausíStroll around the small town of Riobamba and buy some traditional slow-roasted pork from the local market. Admire Chimborazo, the tallest volcano in Ecuador and the closest point to the sun on Earth. Arrive in Alausí and visit the colorful old train station. Day 8 - Overnight in CuencaLeave Alausí and wander around the ancient Ingapirka ruins, where Ecuadorian history started. Continue your journey in Cuenca, one of the country's most beautiful cities, and take part in a Panama hat workshop if you'd like to get to know the town's traditional production process. Day 9 - Overnight in CuencaEmbark on an insightful walking tour of Cuenca Old Town and gaze at its main buildings. Explore the picturesque town of Gualaceo, famous for its handwoven 'makanas'. Day 10 - Overnight in GuayaquilTake the route to Guayaquil, stopping at the breathtaking Cajas National Park along the way. Arrive in the city and visit the 'malecon' area on the Guayas River or choose to take the cable car for a nice aerial view of the city.

From Quito: Otavalo, Plaza de Ponchos Market & Cotacachi

6. From Quito: Otavalo, Plaza de Ponchos Market & Cotacachi

Discover a wide array of local crafts on this day trip from Quito to the vibrant Plaza de Ponchos market in the city of Otavalo. Visit a fabric gallery at Casa Condor, an Andean Music House, and travel to Cotacachi to look for leather goods. Be picked up by your local guide at your accommodation in Quito. Relax on a scenic drive through the Guayllabamba countryside and stop to savor a custardy chirimoya fruit. Continue to the Andean highland city of Otavalo.  Head to the Plaza de Ponchos market where local crafts from northern Ecuador are sold. Peruse the colorful shops before continuing to the Casa Condor gallery for a demonstration on the traditional preparation and coloring of wool. Delight your ears at the Andean Music House where a musician will show you how Andean instruments are used in local performances. Drive to the charming town of Cotacachi to check out some fine leather products that the area is well-known for. Have the chance to stop to purchase a local lunch before returning to your accommodation in Quito.

Other Sightseeing Options in Otavalo

Want to discover all there is to do in Otavalo? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Otavalo

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 37 reviews

Gustavo Tupiza was an excellent guide. He was professional, knowledgeable, kind and courteous, spoke great English, was patient, informative and really went the extra mile to be helpful. He is a great driver, as well as great company and my friend and I felt incredibly safe and looked after. We highly recommend him. Anyone would lucky to have him as a driver and guide.

Diego is a fabulous guide; a friendly and knowledgeable ambassador for Ecuador. He brought us to great places, had good advice about walking through the markets and helped us find what we were looking for. Diego is generous, interesting and a delightful conversationalist and he gave us a wonderful day in Otavalo.

Adrian our bubbly guide was very interactive and fun. He loves what he does and was visible in his demeanor. Made us feel so welcome in Ecuador!

Lots of activities included with knowledgeable guide. Very accommodating for pick up and drop off

It was relaxed. Interesting stops, love the waterfall and all the stuff you could buy. Thanks.