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THE MAGIC natural history circuit OF ECUADOR

  • Birds - Hummingbirds - Butterflies - Orchids
  • Frogs - Insects - Mammals
  • Wildlife Photography
  • English speaking native Guides
  • Trip Advisor Travelers Choice Awards
  • 6 Private Nature Reserves
  • 4 Beautiful Eco-Lodges
  • 11 Diverse Eco-systems
  • Pre-scheduled or Custom Tours
  • Trips of a Lifetime!

natural History Tours

Our Ecuador Natural History Tours will take you through San Jorge Botanical Reserve/Quito in the Pichincha Foothills  (Andes Highlands/High Barren Plains/Highland Rainforest).  Visit San Jorge de Tandayapa Hummingbird Sanctuary (Cloud Forest) and 2017 NEW! – The Canopy Islands – Wild Photography Center.  Visit San Jorge de Milpe Orchid & Bird Reserve (Upper Tropical Rainforest) at our NEW! Deluxe Forest Lodge with bungalows, balcony & views including new spacious observation tower overlooking the canopy, and known for its majestic waterfalls and swimming holes. The Magic Hiking Circuit has over 1,200 possible species of birds, 65 species of Hummingbirds, wildlife, wild orchids, butterflies, frogs, 15 waterfalls, 2 ponds, streams and a broad diversity of flora and fauna  -  all within a two hour radius of Quito!  San Jorge’s Natural History Tours of Ecuador offer the ultimate experience for Birdwatchers, Wildlife Photographers, Hikers, Outdoor Adventurers, Writers, History Enthusiasts, Artists, and nature lovers alike.

Ecuador Natural History itineraries

The Deluxe Magic Circuit Natural History Circuit packages are all-inclusive, including transfers as shown, comfortable lodging accommodations, meals, specialized English speaking native naturalist guide, tours, private transportation, and reserve entrance fees.  Added features while at San Jorge’s Reserves, include delicious Ecuadorian and International cuisine and quality services.

DELUXE NATURAL HISTORY TOUR
7 NIGHTS/8 Days

2017 Pre-scheduled tour dates
March 10 - 17;
April 10 - 17;
May 10 - 17;
June 10 - 17;
July 10 - 17;
August 10 - 17;
September 10 - 17;
October 10 - 17;
November 10 - 17;
December 10 - 17


Day One - Evening airport transfer
from Quito Airport to San Jorge Eco-Lodge/Quito, overnight lodging San Jorge/Quito

Day Two - Old Colonial Quito City Tour. We will explore the Capital of Ecuador, considered part of the Cultural Patrimony of Humanity by UNESCO. During your visit you will learn about the colonial art in the churches, history, archaeology and folklore in the museums. Your private guide will provide complete information of the baroque colonial art. Visit the most important areas: Plaza de la Independencia, Plaza San Francisco, Plaza Santo Domingo, La Merced, La Compania, Panecillo.  Lunch at typical restaurant. Overnight San Jorge/Quito, includes 3 meals

Day Three - San Jorge de Tandayapa Hummingbird Sanctuary (Cloud Forest) Natural History Tour  Beautiful birds, panorama views, wild surroundings, tropical plants/flowers, wild orchids, and exotic wildlife within our tropical world famous Cloud Forest. Well-kept trails explore the different parts of the reserve.  Hiking on our main loop trail (Toucanet Trail) goes around the lower part of the forest visiting beautiful primary forest and small creeks.  Our newest hiking trail (Nunbird Loop Trail) goes all the way to the top of the ridge to a very ancient forest which is almost completely covered in moss. This forest is habited by very localized bird species such as the White-faced Nunbird and the Toucan Barbet.  The most impressive views of the valley can be appreciated from here with a picnic lunch. The main open air dining area offers feeders with great photo options and has spectacular views of Tandayapa Valley. Lunch at our open air Hummingbird Restaurant overlooking feeders with great photo options. Overnight San Jorge/Tandayapa, includes 3 meals

Day Four - San Jorge de Milpe Orchid & Bird Reserve (Upper Tropical Rain Forest) Natural History Tour with swimming at the waterfalls and picnic lunch. Visit a wild virgin cloud forest around Pichincha Mountain and trek on great jungle trails inside a natural paradise.  This is considered a bird watching paradise, majestic cascading waterfalls, wild surroundings, Yumbo civilization ruins, tropical plants/flowers/ numerous butterflies and wild orchids within our tropical reserve. The stunning upper tropical rainforest surrounding the lodges feature well-kept pristine hiking trails, with 8 different trails to explore the different features of the reserve, with 11 spring fed waterfalls, crossed by the large Chaguaryacu River. Overnight San Jorge/Milpe Cliff Lodge, includes 3 meals

Day Five - Early breakfast & transfer to San Jorge/Quito  - Sacred Waterfalls & Medicinal Plants at San Jorge Botanical Reserve/Quito. We will trek to the Highland Tropical Rainforest, visiting up to 5 sacred waterfalls. Here, we will learn about some of the 250 varieties of native medicinal plants in the region. At the same time, you will take in the fabulous panoramic views of Quito, its lush valleys and majestic mountains and the volcano peaks of Cayambe, Antizana, Pasochoa, Pululahua, Pichincha, and Illalo. We can observe 11 mountains from various points of San Jorge Botanical Reserve/Quito. Picnic lunch at the waterfalls. Overnight San Jorge/Quito, includes 3 meals

Day Six - Otavalo Indian Market & Surroundings Visit the world famous Otavalo Indian Market. You will have the opportunity to shop for world famous handmade wool and alpaca products. Also, visit Cotacashi (leather village) OR San Antonia de Ibarra wood carving village. Includes lunch at typical restaurant. Overnight San Jorge/Quito, includes 3 meals

Day Seven - Papallacta Natural Hot Springs  Journey through the High Andes Barren Plains (4000 mts. o.s.l). Drive the same route as Francisco De Orellana walked when he discovered the Amazon River. Visit Tumbaco, Cumbaya and Pifo Valley. Take a morning hike, learning about the flora and fauna of the surrounding area. We will climb up the Central Andes chain until we reach Papallacta Lake where we will then stop at the thermal hot springs. During the trip, your guide will give you a botanical and ecological explanation of the Coca Cayambe Reserve, which is considered an Andes Condor area. Overnight San Jorge/Quito, includes 3 meals

Day Eight - AM transfer to Quito Airport

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The Deluxe Magic Circuit Natural History Circuit packages are all-inclusive, including transfers as shown, comfortable lodging accommodations, meals, specialized English speaking native naturalist guide, tours, private transportation, and reserve entrance fees.  Added features while at San Jorge’s Reserves, include delicious Ecuadorian and International cuisine and quality services.

NATURAL HISTORY - GORGEOUS SCENERY & TRAILS - HANDS ON ANDES CHOCOLATE & COOKING CLASS - NIGHT WALKS - SWIMMING IN THE CASCADING WATERFALLS
~ VISIT THE ANDES HIGHLANDS, CLOUD FOREST & UPPER TROPICAL RAINFOREST ~

Day 1 - 8:00 am pick up in downtown Quito.  Natural History at San Jorge Botanical Reserve/Quito - Walk and visit  the pristine highland humid forest, volcanic  walls, sightseeing overlooking Quito from a distance, pre-Inca trail. Great explanation of  archeology, medicinal plants and folklore.  After lunch, hands on Cooking Class at our chocolate factory learning how to make dark Andes chocolate and empanadas.  Overnight San Jorge/Quito Lodge, includes lunch & dinner

Day 2 - Visit the middle of the world museum  and original equator monument at Cala Cali.  Continue on to San Jorge  de Tandayapa Hummingbird Sanctuary in the Cloud Forest checking for hummingbirds and tanagers at the feeders. Excellent for wild photography.  After lunch, walk to the  cliff or canyon - wonderful well designed trails.  Overnight San Jorge/Tandayapa Lodge, includes 3 meals

Day 3 - Early morning  sightseeing and  animal observation at the reserve. After breakfast  guided Orchid Tour at our orchidairy and gorgeous trails full of orchids and bromeliads.   Afternoon at leisure on own.
After  dinner, Night Walk to our  2 ponds  to observe  night insects, frogs and  possible animals, including olinguitos and kinkajous at feeders.  Overnight San Jorge/Tandayapa Lodge, includes 3 meals

Day 4 - After  breakfast  depart for San Jorge de Milpe Orchid & Bird Reserve in the Upper Tropical Rainforest.  Afternoon bird and canopy observation at our new observatory tower overlooking the canopy. Time  to enjoy your incredible superior cabin with private balcony and hamacs.   After dinner, partake in a Night Walk looking for owls, potoos, different frogs and insects.  San Jorge's Milpe Reserve has a upper tropical forest, which is even more diverse than our Cloud Forest at San Jorge de Tandayapa.  Totally different eco-systems, only 1 hour drive part!

Day 5 - After  breakfast get ready for a hike in the Tropical forest, visiting 12 waterfalls all pristine!  Time  to swim and enjoy one of the last preserved and purest forests in the world!
Picnic lunch at the stone beach of Chaguaryaco  River.  Overnight San Jorge/Milpe Lodge, includes 3 meals

Day 6 - Day of leisure at San Jorge Milpe paradise to explore on own.  Overnight San Jorge/Milpe Lodge, includes 3 meals

Day 7 - Breakfast & transportation to Quito

Extra days:  San Roque or Sangilqui Indian Food Markets;  Old Colonial Quito

Note:  Both San Jorge/Tandayapa & San Jorge/Milpe Lodges are located in the Choco Corridor, one of the last areas that were never destroyed by ice ages.  These areas offer extreme biodiversity and are very lush.

Request Pricing Information

 

The Deluxe Magic Circuit Natural History Circuit packages are all-inclusive, including transfers as shown, comfortable lodging accommodations, meals, specialized English speaking native naturalist guide, tours, private transportation, and reserve entrance fees.  Added features while at San Jorge’s Reserves, include delicious Ecuadorian and International cuisine and quality services.

DELUXE NATURAL HISTORY TOUR
4 nights/5 Days

2017 Pre-scheduled tour dates
March 11 - 15;
April 11 - 15;
May 11 - 15;
June 11 - 15;
July 11 - 15;
August 11 - 15;
September 11 - 15;
October 11 - 15;
November 11 - 15;
December 11 - 15


Day One - Evening airport transfer from Quito Airport to San Jorge Eco-Lodge/Quito, overnight lodging San Jorge/Quito

Day Two - San Jorge de Tandayapa Hummingbird Sanctuary (Cloud Forest) Natural History Tour  Beautiful birds, panorama views, wild surroundings, tropical plants/flowers, wild orchids, and exotic wildlife within our tropical world famous Cloud Forest. Well-kept trails explore the different parts of the reserve.  Hiking on our main loop trail (Toucanet Trail) goes around the lower part of the forest visiting beautiful primary forest and small creeks.  Our newest hiking trail (Nunbird Loop Trail) goes all the way to the top of the ridge to a very ancient forest which is almost completely covered in moss. This forest is habited by very localized bird species such as the White-faced Nunbird and the Toucan Barbet.  The most impressive views of the valley can be appreciated from here with a picnic lunch. The main open air dining area offers feeders with great photo options and has spectacular views of Tandayapa Valley. Lunch at our open air Hummingbird Restaurant overlooking feeders with great photo options. Overnight San Jorge/Tandayapa, includes 3 meals

Day Three - San Jorge de Milpe Orchid & Bird Reserve (Upper Tropical Rain Forest) Natural History Tour with swimming at the waterfalls and picnic lunch. Visit a wild virgin cloud forest around Pichincha Mountain and trek on great jungle trails inside a natural paradise.  This is considered a bird watching paradise, majestic cascading waterfalls, wild surroundings, Yumbo civilization ruins, tropical plants/flowers/ numerous butterflies and wild orchids within our tropical reserve. The stunning upper tropical rainforest surrounding the lodges feature well-kept pristine hiking trails, with 8 different trails to explore the different features of the reserve, with 11 spring fed waterfalls, crossed by the large Chaguaryacu River. Overnight San Jorge/Milpe Cliff Lodge, includes 3 meals

Day Four - Early breakfast & transfer to San Jorge/Quito  - Sacred Waterfalls & Medicinal Plants at San Jorge Botanical Reserve/Quito. We will trek to the Highland Tropical Rainforest, visiting up to 5 sacred waterfalls. Here, we will learn about some of the 250 varieties of native medicinal plants in the region. At the same time, you will take in the fabulous panoramic views of Quito, its lush valleys and majestic mountains and the volcano peaks of Cayambe, Antizana, Pasochoa, Pululahua, Pichincha, and Illalo. We can observe 11 mountains from various points of San Jorge Botanical Reserve/Quito. Picnic lunch at the waterfalls. Overnight San Jorge/Quito, includes 3 meals

Day Five - AM transfer to Quito Airport

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Sierra Club: Ecuador Eco-Tour III - Tour date:  June 11 -  16, 2017 (Sun – Fri) – 5N/6D

We will spend our days exploring San Jorge private reserves, trekking to sacred waterfalls on pre-Incan trails, learning about local culture, volcanology, anthropology, see incredible birds, wildlife, plants and flowers. We will be based just 25 minutes from Quito staying at the 18th century Spanish Hacienda San Jorge Eco-Lodge Quito at 9,850’.  A few nights will be spent at their private reserve San Jorge de Tandayapa Hummingbird Sanctuary in the Cloud Forest.  We will tour Old Colonial Quito, an Indian Market and, of course, a stop at the Middle of the World Equator Monument in Cala Cali.  
Travel with Sierra Club group and leaders as well as San Jorge naturalist guides.

Cost includes lodging,  ground transport, all delicious Ecuadorian meals except day of arrival, English speaking guides.
Group international airfare extra.

For itinerary, application & cancellation policy contact Leader: Donna Specht – email:  donnaspecht@juno.com

The Budget Magic Hiking Circuit packages include outbound transfer on Day 7, basic smaller rooms, meals as shown, specialized English speaking native guide, tours, private transportation, and reserve entrance fees.  Added features while at San Jorge include delicious Ecuadorian and International cuisine and quality services.  (Inbound transportation Day One on own)

BUDGET NATURAL HISTORY TOUR
6 nights/7 days

2017 Pre-scheduled tour dates
March 3 - 9;
April 3 - 9;
May 3 - 9;
June 3 - 9;
July 3 - 9;
August 3 - 9;
September 3 - 9;
October 3 - 9
November 3 - 9;
December 3 - 9


Day One - Own transportation to
San Jorge Eco-Lodge/Quito, overnight lodging San Jorge/Quito, no meals included

Day Two - Sacred Waterfalls & Medicinal Plants at San Jorge Botanical Reserve/Quito.  We will trek to the Highland Tropical Rainforest, visiting up to 5 sacred waterfalls. Here, we will learn about some of the 250 varieties of native medicinal plants in the region. At the same time, you will take in the fabulous panoramic views of Quito, its lush valleys and majestic mountains and the volcano peaks of Cayambe, Antizana, Pasochoa, Pululahua, Pichincha, and Illalo. We can observe 11 mountains from various points of San Jorge Botanical Reserve. Includes picnic lunch at the waterfalls. Overnight San Jorge/Quito, includes 3 meals

Day Three - The Last Incan’s Emperor’s Trails Hiking & Historical Tour (Chasqui Trail)
following the same footsteps as the pre-Incans.  This hike will take us from Quito to the Yumbos land towards Tulipe which crosses San Jorge Botanical Reserve/Quito.  We see the coluncus and old road vestiges when hiking the area, along with panorama views of the mountains, flora and fauna makes for a wonderful hiking adventure.  www.eco-lodgesanjorge.com/last_incan_trail.shtml
Overnight San Jorge/Quito, includes 3 meals      

Day Four - San Jorge de Tandayapa Hummingbird Sanctuary
(Cloud Forest) Natural History Tour. Birds and Hummingbirds, panorama views, wild surroundings, tropical plants/flowers, beautiful wild orchids and exotic wildlife within our tropical world famous Cloud Forest.  Well-kept trails explore the different parts of the reserve.  Hiking on our main loop trail (Toucanet Trail) goes around the lower part of the forest visiting beautiful primary forest and small creeks.  Our newest hiking trail (Nunbird Loop Trail) goes all the way to the top of the ridge to a very ancient forest which is almost completely covered in moss.  This forest is habited by localized bird species such as the White-faced Nunbird and the Toucan Barbet.  The most impressive views of the valley can be appreciated from here with a picnic lunch while on tour or at our open air dining area surrounded by feeders offering great photo options and spectacular views of Tandayapa Valley.
Overnight San Jorge/Tandayapa, includes 3 meals

Day Five - Day of leisure at San Jorge/Tandayapa Reserve
for exploring on own; overnight San Jorge/Tandayapa, includes 3 meals

Day Six - San Jorge de Milpe Orchid & Bird Reserve (Upper Tropical Rain Forest) Natural History Tour with swimming at the waterfalls and picnic lunch.
Visit a wild virgin cloud forest around Pichincha Mountain and trek on great jungle trails inside a natural paradise. This is considered a bird watching paradise, majestic cascading waterfalls, wild surroundings, Yumbo civilization ruins, tropical plants/flowers/ numerous butterflies and wild orchids within our tropical reserve. The stunning upper tropical rainforest surrounding the lodges feature well-kept pristine hiking trails, with 8 different trails to explore the different features of the reserve with 11 spring fed waterfalls, crossed by the large Chaguaryacu River. Open air dining. Overnight San Jorge/Milpe Cliff Lodge, includes 3 meals

Day Seven - Day of leisure at San Jorge/Milpe Reserve for exploring on own; after lunch transfer to downtown Quito, includes breakfast & lunch

 

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The Magic Hiking  Circuit

San Jorge Eco-lodge Quito:
Km 4  Vía  antigua a  Nono (Cont. calle Machala)

San Jorge de Tandayapa  Eco-lodge:
Km 3,5 partidero antiguo a Tandayapa

San Jorge de Milpe Bird & Orchid Lodge:
Km 3,7 Camino a MilpE

 

 

 

 

 

 


Hummingbird Poster

 

Quick facts of Ecuador

  • Quito ~ The First City to be declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
  • World Famous Galapagos Islands
  • The Andes Mountains – the world’s longest mountain range
    17 Distinctive Ethnic Indian Groups
  • Cotopaxi Volcano ~ the highest volcano in the world; 5,870 mts. O.S.L.
  • 3,000 species of Orchids
  • 1,600 species of Birds (world record per square meter)
  • 132 species of Hummingbirds (world record)
  • 65 Volcanoes
  • 12 different climate steps of the world
  • Diversified variety of foods


 


Choose a pre-scheduled tour date & itinerary, and  tell us how many people will be traveling with you


 



























Hiking San Jorge Tandayapa Cloud Forest



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Cheryl Korowotny
International Director
The Magic Birding & Photography Circuit
SAN JORGE ECO-LODGES & BOTANICAL RESERVES
Quito-Tandayapa-Milpe-Cosanga-Estero Hondo
Ecuador – South America

(877) 565-2596 toll-free USA/Canada 
Email: info@eco-lodgesanjorge.com


San Jorge has been awarded the ‘Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence’ for the past 7 consecutive years!

Recommended by Trip Advisor, Lonely Planet, Frommer’s Ecuador & the Galapagos Islands, Moon Travel, Fodor’s South America, Viva Travel Guide & Rough Guides

Photography accredited to George Cruz