In the southern part of Ecuador we find several small, seldom used secondary roads that connect isolated villages and farming areas, which offer no interest for regular or heavy traffic. The 100Km road that drops 2000m, from Saraguro down to the Jubones desert is a perfect example. The trip starts at high moorland ground and descends to a very fertile agricultural area inhabited by the Saraguro Indians. Then the second day we descend gradually to a dry forest, full of interesting plant and bird life and finally we cross the Jubones inter-andean desert that drops down close to the lowlands level. The trip is full of excitement and adrenaline along the zigzagging dirt road.
The most southern province of the Ecuadorian Andean region, Loja, is full of interesting natural and cultural highlights. This trip combines those sites, starting with a visit to Saraguro, the center of a very special native group, where we will witness parts of their traditions and handicraft work. Vilcabamba is located in a warm subtropical valley with a very pleasant andrelaxed atmosphere excellent for hiking or simply enjoying the natural scenery and landscape. It is known for its spa facilities and laid back life style. We also visit the Podocarpus N.P. for a walk on the cloud forest area of Cajanuma. Finally we tour around the city of Loja known for having excellent urban planning and very interesting visitor sites. We then return to Cuenca.