Cotacachi and Cuicocha Lake

Cuicocha Lake, Ecuador

This water-filled caldera, named Cuicocha Lake, is just a taxi ride away from Cotacachi. On the weekends  boat rides are available to the lava domes and thru the Channel of Enchantment. For the more adventurous, an 8.4 mile hiking trail goes around the entire lake, where the views are simply stunning. Enough words, here are pictures.

Cuicocha Lake, Ecuador

Our starting point around Cuicocha Lake-8.4 miles

Cuicocha Lake

We’ve only just begun. This hike took us 5 to 5 1/2 hours

Cuicocha Lake

The water-filled caldera, Cuicocha Lake

Cuicocha, Ecuador

Looking back on our trail behind us

Cuicocha Lake, Ecuador (trail)

one of many steps on the trail

Cuicocha Lake trail

On the trail

Cuicocha Lake, Ecuador

Smaller Island named Yerovi, and the larger, Teodoro Wolf

Cuicocha Lake trail

Midway point on the trail

Cuicocha Lake, Ecuador

Us

Cuicocha Lake, Imbabura Ecuador

Teodoro Wolf Island, one of the lava domes

Cuicocha Lake, Ecuador

Another view of Teodoro Wolf Island

Mt. Cotacachi, Ecuador

The usual fog is rolling in on Mt. Cotacachi

Mt. Cotacachi, Ecuador

That fog rolls in quickly

Mt. Cotacachi, Ecuador

Mt. Cotacachi as seen from the trail. The fog has lifted.

Cuicocha Lake, Ecuador

There are beautiful flowers all over the trail.

Mt. Imbabura, Ecuador

Mt. Imbabura from the trail between the rolling fog

The lake water, for the most part, comes from underneath, and not from rain. This is an active crater. The boats stop at a certain point on the lake for visitors to have a closeup look at where the gases bubble on up from the bottom to the surface..

Cuicocha Lake, Ecuador

Cuicocha Lake, Ecuador

The boats run on the weekends, but weekends can be busy. A Friday morning worked best for one couplet.

Cuicocha Lake, Ecuador

There is wild life on the lava domes, and not just birds

The Channel of Enchantment, Cuicocha Lake Ecuador

The boats take tourists between the two lava domes, it’s called the Channel of Enchantment

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cotacachi is a small Quichuan community, as well as, a popular retirement community for expats. This cute little town is known for it’s beautiful leather work and it’s many leather boutiques. It is also known for it’s mountain music, it’s plethora of Gringos, and of course, the mountain that bears it’s name. Here are a few images.

Cotacachi, Ecuador

A statue in one of the parks indicating what Cotacachi is known for–it’s music and leather work.

cotacachi5

One of the parks or plazas — Parque Matrix

Cotacachi, Ecuador

I love these streets

Cotacachi, Ecuador

Cotacachi, Ecuador

Cotacachi, Ecuador

Some of the town.

With the gringos, come many Gringo hangouts along with some good old American-style food. These are only a few.

cotacachi, Ecuador

The restaurant Serendipity

cotacachi, Ecuador

The coffee roaster in Cotacachi

cotacachi, Ecuador

His coffee roaster

cotacachi, Ecuador

A Gringo hangout called the Coo Coo’s Nest or The Solid Rock Cafe

Cotacachi, Ecuador

La Fontana Italian Restaurant (closed) but in Parque Francisco try his place called Casa Vieja for pizza.

So, another fun day, or two, to be had in Imbabura.

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