Private Journeys

Self-drive Ecuador: The Avenue of the Volcanoes

11 days from £2,830pp

(based on two people sharing & excluding flights)

Ecuador & Galapagos Islands

  • Claire Milner ©

Overview & Highlights

With the freedom of your own self drive hire car, explore the varied Andean landscapes of Ecuador along the Avenue of the Volcanoes and a variety of great cities in under two weeks.

Wedged between Peru and Colombia, mainland Ecuador is certainly more compact than its larger Andean neighbours, but no less diverse for that. For those with limited time who wish to experience a wide variety of gob-smacking landscapes and  traditional cultures, it’s a near perfect destination. And what better way to explore than by self-drive hire car.

The recently expanded and paved road network, negotiating the sun-scarred plateaux and plunging down through the shadows of near vertical, cloudforest-shrouded valleys guides you along a cross-section of this beautiful country. Twists and turns, switchbacks, tunnels, four-lane auto-routes and shady cobbled country lanes all feature in this holiday which not only introduces you to Ecuador’s main artery, the Panamerican Highway following the iconic Avenue of the Volcanoes, but also back-roads though patch-worked  rural landscapes peopled by tight-knit communities where custom and tradition still govern the leisurely-paced bucolic way of life.

With the freedom of your own hire car, discover all this as well as Ecuador’s three illustrious metropolises, each standing in stark contrast to its sisters: the capital, Quito, a mélange of evocative history and dynamic contemporary society; Cuenca, one of the continent’s best preserved and stately colonial Spanish cities and Guayaquil, a vivacious and sultry port on the tropical coast of the Pacific Ocean.

We book your car, your accommodation, and supply loads of useful information including alternative routes and optional experiences based on our own travels along these routes.

Read More
  • Walking tour of colonial Quito
  • Cotopaxi and Las Cajas National Parks
  • 9 days Self-Drive around Ecuador

THE UK’S NO. 1 SPECIALIST IN TRAVEL TO LATIN AMERICA

Alex

Alex Walker

Travel Expert

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Things to do

We proudly offer the widest range of activities, excursions and one-of-a-kind experiences across all our destinations, tried and tested personally by our travel experts.

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What our clients say

  • The amazing scenery - every kilometre of the Carretera Austral, every turning, offers stunning views which never cease to surprise...I am impressed with the way it is possible to combine…

    SC, Penryn
  • JLA already has a good reputation and we were certainly impressed by the management of this tour.

    AF, Altrincham
  • Everything exceeded expectations, from the printed itinerary to the excursions.

    SB, Mansfield
  • Most memorable experience? - Iguacu Falls were amazing. Boat trip under the falls and helicopter ride from the Brazilian side were truly memorable. I thoroughly enjoyed my holiday to Brazil…

    HP, Richmond
  • Overall it was a wonderful trip with an exceptional tour leader assisted by excellent local guides and drivers. We left with memories that will last a lifetime.

    GC, Fortrose
  • We enjoyed an excellent tour with a special tour leader. We chose this tour because it took us to a lot of places we had dreampt of visiting and it…

    CHJ, Aberdeen
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Our Expert's Opinion

Alex
Alex Walker Travel Expert A globetrotter since her childhood, Alex spent a year studying abroad in Guadalajara and has returned to Latin America countless times since then.

Inspired by this trip

Our exciting range of articles on Latin America explore everything from iconic destinations and lesser-known cultural gems to delicious traditional recipes. You’ll also find exclusive travel tips, first-hand client reviews and the chance to get your personal questions answered by our travel experts.

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Your edit for Latin American inspiration

Our exciting range of articles on Latin America explore everything from iconic destinations and lesser-known cultural gems to delicious traditional recipes. You’ll also find exclusive travel tips, first-hand client reviews and the chance to get your personal questions answered by our travel experts.

View Extraordinary Inspiration
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Meet our team

Real Latin american experts

  • Hannah
    Hannah Waterhouse - Travel Expert

    Hannah had an early introduction to Latin America when her family moved to Ecuador and she returned to study in Buenos Aires for a year before backpacking across the continent.

  • Maggie
    Maggie Wilson - Travel Expert

    Maggie visited Latin America on her first backpacking trip when she was 19. Since then, she has taken every opportunity to travel, and has managed to explore a lot of the region in subsequent trips.

  • Sallly
    Sally Dodge - Travel Expert

    A former Journey Latin America tour leader, Sally spent 7 years working, travelling and living throughout Latin America before returning to the UK to help people arrange their own adventures to this wonderful destination.

  • Charlotte
    Charlotte Daubeney - Travel Expert

    Charlotte's fascination with Latin America began with a family holiday to Belize. She went on to study Spanish in school and at university before spending a year living in Santiago, Chile.

  • Alex
    Alex Walker - Travel Expert

    A globetrotter since her childhood, Alex spent a year studying abroad in Guadalajara and has returned to Latin America countless times since then.

  • Kathryn
    Kathryn Rhodes - Travel Expert

    Kathryn backpacked across Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Peru before joining us. She has a degree in Philosophy and French and is a keen netball player.

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