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Old 06-13-2012, 02:23 PM   #1
Princess Runner
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Question about Ecuador

We are planning to stay a couple days extra in Quito / Otavalo area, how did you like Hacienda Cusin or Hacienda Pinsaqui? do they have excursions?
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Old 06-13-2012, 02:40 PM   #2
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We stayed at Hacienda Cusin in our Ecuador/Galapagos trip. We also visited Pinsaqui and had lunch there, I believe the day before we left for Galapagos. That was also where we did our Andean painting. Hacienda Cusin does not offer excursions. Both offer horseback riding if you are interested. I believe the newer itineraries are now staying at Pinsaqui. Hacienda Cusin is really old. The breakfast choices are not a whole lot and the same everyday. The dishes they served us in the tour were not stellar, one lunch I remember they offered lasagna (not in Cusin). My gripe with HC is the street noise. Our room was right next to the road where they dropped off the rose workers at 6 am. So at that time, you hear the buses honking their horns and smell exhaust. Heat is provided by a fireplace and you have to light it yourself using old newspapers and firewood,which became hubby's form of entertainment since there is no TV or radio inthe rooms. It is very idyllic and nice. I think Pinsaqui is a better place to lodge. It is quieter and the view is great! They have a wonderful garden as well. I can't say anything about the lodging since I didn't get to see the living quarters.

Hope that helps.
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Old 06-14-2012, 07:38 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by tufbuf View Post
We stayed at Hacienda Cusin in our Ecuador/Galapagos trip. We also visited Pinsaqui and had lunch there, I believe the day before we left for Galapagos. That was also where we did our Andean painting. Hacienda Cusin does not offer excursions. Both offer horseback riding if you are interested. I believe the newer itineraries are now staying at Pinsaqui. Hacienda Cusin is really old. The breakfast choices are not a whole lot and the same everyday. The dishes they served us in the tour were not stellar, one lunch I remember they offered lasagna (not in Cusin). My gripe with HC is the street noise. Our room was right next to the road where they dropped off the rose workers at 6 am. So at that time, you hear the buses honking their horns and smell exhaust. Heat is provided by a fireplace and you have to light it yourself using old newspapers and firewood,which became hubby's form of entertainment since there is no TV or radio inthe rooms. It is very idyllic and nice. I think Pinsaqui is a better place to lodge. It is quieter and the view is great! They have a wonderful garden as well. I can't say anything about the lodging since I didn't get to see the living quarters.

Hope that helps.
Thank you for the reply, We had been in Ecuador before, but no with Disney and I find unusual that people's general complaint is quality/variety of food, my experience has been different, specially in Quito food was awesome, I have been in Guayaquil and the coast (The Sun Route) also and the seafood there is just fresh and amaizing. It may be that being on a tour they play it "safe" with the food because that is an issue when you travel outside the US. I can imagine that Disney has good reasons to switch lodging from HC to HP they always try their best to wow and their quality standards are very high. I think Im going to take your advise as far as that and will reserve at HP. Enjoy your cruise I notice you are leaving about the same time that we do...Elcka
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Old 06-14-2012, 07:53 PM   #4
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Thank you for the reply, We had been in Ecuador before, but no with Disney and I find unusual that people's general complaint is quality/variety of food, my experience has been different, specially in Quito food was awesome, I have been in Guayaquil and the coast (The Sun Route) also and the seafood there is just fresh and amaizing. It may be that being on a tour they play it "safe" with the food because that is an issue when you travel outside the US. I can imagine that Disney has good reasons to switch lodging from HC to HP they always try their best to wow and their quality standards are very high. I think Im going to take your advise as far as that and will reserve at HP. Enjoy your cruise I notice you are leaving about the same time that we do...Elcka

I thought that was the case too. We LOVED the food in Peru and I thought we will be in for a treat with Ecuadorian cuisine but we were very disappointed.

Oh cool! Is this your first Fantasy cruise? We will be heading to NYC in August and we are excited! The Fantasy is awesome!!! Have fun too!

Oh, and some folks did some excursions from Quito. We only did the tour in Old Town, didn't have time for Teleferico.
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Old 06-15-2012, 07:24 PM   #5
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When we were in Ecudor last December, we booked excursions on our own for the extra days (rafting, mountain biking, hot springs). They picked us up at the hotel and brought us back there. This may be an option if there are not excursions offered directly trhough the hotel.
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Old 06-17-2012, 08:50 AM   #6
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When we were in Ecudor last December, we booked excursions on our own for the extra days (rafting, mountain biking, hot springs). They picked us up at the hotel and brought us back there. This may be an option if there are not excursions offered directly trhough the hotel.
Yes! thats what we want to do, did you stay at any of the haciendas? with who did you book the excursion and did they spoke english> Thank you!!!
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Old 06-17-2012, 01:35 PM   #7
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We stayed at the JW Marriot that ABD uses in Quito. We booked the biking through Aries Bike company. The "tour" that we chose had us dropped off at the hot springs first and then lunch and mountain biking. It was just DH and myself and Arie picked us up and gave us a choice of biking routes. We did the rafting through Barefoot Expeditions. They had wonderful rafting guides. We booked this trip with four others from our ABD trip and they had one other paaenger that had also booked that day. This trip also included our transfers and lunch. I am happy to give you more specifics if you are interested.
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Old 06-21-2012, 11:13 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by sjlsk8r View Post
We stayed at the JW Marriot that ABD uses in Quito. We booked the biking through Aries Bike company. The "tour" that we chose had us dropped off at the hot springs first and then lunch and mountain biking. It was just DH and myself and Arie picked us up and gave us a choice of biking routes. We did the rafting through Barefoot Expeditions. They had wonderful rafting guides. We booked this trip with four others from our ABD trip and they had one other paaenger that had also booked that day. This trip also included our transfers and lunch. I am happy to give you more specifics if you are interested.
Yes please do, believe it or not I run marathons but never learned to ride a bike but I will definetily look on line those tour operators, if there is other names please let me know!!! we are planning to spend a couple of days at Hacienda Pinsaqui, it seems to be this is the favorite one and also has great reviews in Tripadvisor, and a night or two at the marriott xoxo
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Old 07-27-2012, 03:15 PM   #9
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Reviving rather than starting a new thread

We leave in a couple of weeks and I have some logistics questions for those of you who have been...Rather than start a new thread, I thought I'd just add on...

Is there laundry service avail on GE 2? We are trying to pack light and will probably need a few things done by the time we get to Galapagos.

Any recommendations about where to eat in Quito, pre and post nights?

DH wants to know if you are snorkeling, is someone on the beach to watch the land cameras you used during the hike. I told him its unlikely anyone will be there except your group, but hes wondering? In CR, an ABD guide watched our stuff while we hiked, swam or surfed.

TIA, to anyone who sees this and can reply!
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Old 07-27-2012, 04:18 PM   #10
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Hi familygoboston! You must be super excited about your upcoming trip!! I can answer some of your questions.

They have laundry service but we did not use it. The dri-fit shirts are easily washed and dry fast. They are also very light if you want to pack light.

We ate at a nearby mall and the hotel in Quito, for convenience so I'm not much help there. DD is a very picky eater so we make sure there is food in the menu for her.

It's safe to leave your stuff on the beach while snorkeling. I left my dslr in a plastic bag on our first snorkeling. The only people with you are the other passengers on the boat plus the guides assigned to each group. I recall Eduardo, one of our ABD guides would almost always be by the beach side. Some snorkeling is what's called a wet landing (you will be briefed) and its straight out of the boat off shore so you can safely leave your stuff on the zodiac. The Galapagos guides are also there and they dont snorkel with you, at least ours didnt. You are never far away from the beach when snorkeling and ABD gets off the ship first so there is a good likelihood no one will be at the site when you get there. Hope that helps.
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Last edited by tufbuf; 07-27-2012 at 04:29 PM.
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Old 07-27-2012, 04:34 PM   #11
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Hi familygoboston! You must be super excited about your upcoming trip!! I can answer some of your questions.

They have laundry service but we did not use it. The dri-fit shirts are easily washed and dry fast. They are also very light if you want to pack light.

We ate at a nearby mall and the hotel in Quito, for convenience so I'm not much help there. DD is a very picky eater so we make sure there is food in the menu for her.

It's safe to leave your stuff on the beach while snorkeling. I left my dslr in a plastic bag on our first snorkeling. The only people with you are the other passengers on the boat plus the guides assigned to each group. I recall Eduardo, one of our ABD guides would almost always be by the beach side. Some snorkeling is what's called a wet landing (you will be briefed) and its straight out of the boat off shore so you can safely leave your stuff on the zodiac. The Galapagos guides are also there and they dont snorkel with you, at least ours didnt. You are never far away from the beach when snorkeling and ABD gets off the ship first so there is a good likelihood no one will be at the site when you get there. Hope that helps.
Thanks! Yes, we are all getting pretty excited about our trip!
The laundry thing is odd, because the docs we got from ABD say laundry is available at select hotels and the ship, but the GE2 website doesn't mention it. I have to call my TA with a couple of questions so I will have her pose this one too!
I was pretty sure the " stuff" would be fine. We do have a good underwater camera, but if we hike first DH will want both
Is that mall area the one that you can walk to on the walkway from the JW? What sorts of things were there? We are getting a bunch of Marriott GC through our credit card points for free, so I'm sure we will have a few meals there anyway, but it might be nice to venture out a bit too!
Thanks for your help...cant promise it will be out last question though!
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Old 07-27-2012, 04:50 PM   #12
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Thanks! Yes, we are all getting pretty excited about our trip!
The laundry thing is odd, because the docs we got from ABD say laundry is available at select hotels and the ship, but the GE2 website doesn't mention it. I have to call my TA with a couple of questions so I will have her pose this one too!
I was pretty sure the " stuff" would be fine. We do have a good underwater camera, but if we hike first DH will want both
Is that mall area the one that you can walk to on the walkway from the JW? What sorts of things were there? We are getting a bunch of Marriott GC through our credit card points for free, so I'm sure we will have a few meals there anyway, but it might be nice to venture out a bit too!
Thanks for your help...cant promise it will be out last question though!
No worries! In a month, you will be the one answering the questions!

I always used my dslr for the hikes and we also have an underwater camera/video. DH is an adept swimmer and can dive and swim underwater. He was able to take great footages of turtles and a shark! He can even dive and swim underwater with the dry suit on! Try it and you'll know what I mean.

It's quite a walk from the JW Marriott. Just take the cab, it cost us 2 bucks. Its a huge shopping mall with clothes, shoes, outdoor stuff, etc., just like a regular mall. They also have a grocery store inside, the name I can't remember anymore. Nestlé has a huge factory in Quito so they sell the chocolates there. In case you're a chocoholic, like I am, you can indulge in those. Our ABD guides were constantly handing out local snacks and one of them was the Nestlé dark chocolate bites which is so yummy, we bought a couple of boxes!

Ask away and I'll try to help the best I could. I'm sure it will all make sense in a couple of weeks.

I also looked at the itinerary and it looks like they changed it a bit? I recall going to the tortoise place last, now it's one of the first stop.
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