| Home | 3 Guianas | Argentina | Bolivia | Brazil | Chile | Colombia | Ecuador | Paraguay | Peru | Uruguay | Venezuela | Videos | Contact |

Quito to Tulcan, Ecuador - A Direct Bus Can Be Hard To Find

Ecuador travel blog by Mark Berman - July 2012   » View Photoset (20 Photos)

Mark Berman, South America backpacker for 10yrs!
In Ecuador there is no such thing as a direct bus, not really, the odd one maybe, but generally they stop here, there and everywhere between the places they travel
Ecuador Photo - The beautiful countryside just south of Tulcan.
The beautiful countryside just south of Tulcan.
through. This makes traveling in Ecuador a lot of fun and you see more than you normally would.

5hrs by Bus Quito to Tulcan

The bus from Quito directly up to Tulcan (including stops) takes 5hrs. I have seen many of the places between Quito and Tulcan on my various travels in Ecuador including Otavalo, Mitad del Mundo, Montufar, Ibarra, Cayambe and Quito Zoo in Guayllabamba, it's a beautiful part of the country. When I travelled from Quito up to Tulcan semi-direct in mid-2012 I took many photos out of the bus. Something I love to do.

The Journey

About 65kms north of Quito, 8kms south / west of Cayambe are the Cochasqui Pyramids. I haven't been. I just saw the sign, but here is a website about them.
Ecuador Photo - Bridge leading to a place called Carchi, north of Ibarra.
Bridge leading to a place called Carchi, north of Ibarra.
At this location distances further north are: Otavalo 16kms, Ibarra 40kms, Tulcan 163kms and the border Rumichaca 175kms. Between Cayambe and Otavalo the terrain opens out into some nice countryside, pastures and rolling hills. There are many trees and a few wood yards with stacks of logs and planks. The bus passed straight through Otavalo to Ibarra.

Dramatic Terrain

North between Ibarra and Hacienda Carpuela is some of the most dramatic rocky terrains on this journey, the road climbs up into the hills for great views down to the green valleys. I believe Carpuela has a carnival, "the carnival of colors". Around Carchi the road winds up the rocky hills for about half an hour before we head in the direction of San Gabriel and Montufar.

The Mammoth Monument

There is a fantastic monument on this leg, a huge mammoth and cavemen with clubs behind it fighting a
Ecuador Photo - Monument of a mammoth, cavemen and saber toothed tiger around San Gabriel.
Monument of a mammoth, cavemen and saber toothed tiger around San Gabriel.
saber-toothed tiger. There are a few other statues and monuments to watch out for around here also.

Around Montufar

5mins from Montufar is a small town called Cristobal Colon (Christopher Columbus). It's centered around a big church and has green pastures all around. Just 5mins from here is a place called Santa Martha de Cuba, there is a waterfall, forest and panoramic views as well as biking and hiking activities. This is beautiful countryside indeed. We now passed through a small town called Huaca with its shabby park full of model butterflies and up to Julio Andrade which from an obscured view looked like it has an attractive orange pink church. It was only another 20 or so minutes from here up to Tulcan through some amazing hilly green landscapes as the sun began to go down.

Ready for the Border Crossing

I was now in Tulcan for the third time and crossed the border into Colombia the next day.

     

View all photos in the Quito to Tulcan Photoset


Itineraries / Routes: 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008



Distances & times (if available) from about halfway from Quito to Tulcan (Ecuador) to:


Map location: Quito to Tulcan, Ecuador. 5hrs by bus from Quito up to Tulcan near the border of Colombia, it's a nice journey through the countryside and green hills! You can stop in Otavalo, Ibarra or Quito Zoo along the way.
 A : Otavalo - Ecuador 18 kms 18 kms straight distance | 35mins 35mins by car (27 kms) | 42mins 42mins by bus (27 kms) (27 kms)
 B : Cayambe - Ecuador 35 kms 35 kms straight distance | 1hr 9mins 1hr 9mins by car (59 kms) | 1hr 22mins 1hr 22mins by bus (59 kms) (59 kms)
 C : Quito Zoo in Guayllabamba - Ecuador 52 kms 52 kms straight distance | 1hr 41mins 1hr 41mins by car (88 kms) | 2hrs 1min 2hrs 1min by bus (88 kms) (88 kms)
 D : Mitad del Mundo - Ecuador 51 kms 51 kms straight distance | 2hrs 21mins 2hrs 21mins by car (117 kms) | 2hrs 49mins 2hrs 49mins by bus (117 kms) (117 kms)
 E : Quito - Ecuador 61 kms 61 kms straight distance | 2hrs 18mins 2hrs 18mins by car (128 kms) | 2hrs 45mins 2hrs 45mins by bus (128 kms) (128 kms)
 F : Tulcan - Ecuador 69 kms 69 kms straight distance | 2hrs 36mins 2hrs 36mins by car (139 kms) | 3hrs 7mins 3hrs 7mins by bus (139 kms) (139 kms)
 G : Ipiales from the Colombian Border - Colombia 77 kms 77 kms straight distance | 2hrs 33mins 2hrs 33mins by car (140 kms) | 3hrs 3mins 3hrs 3mins by bus (140 kms) (140 kms)
 H : Machachi - Ecuador 107 kms 107 kms straight distance | 2hrs 56mins 2hrs 56mins by car (168 kms) | 3hrs 31mins 3hrs 31mins by bus (168 kms) (168 kms)
 I : Mindo - Ecuador 82 kms 82 kms straight distance | 3hrs 38mins 3hrs 38mins by car (187 kms) | 4hrs 21mins 4hrs 21mins by bus (187 kms) (187 kms)
 J : Saquisili - Ecuador 144 kms 144 kms straight distance | 3hrs 39mins 3hrs 39mins by car (214 kms) | 4hrs 22mins 4hrs 22mins by bus (214 kms) (214 kms)
 K : Latacunga - Ecuador 151 kms 151 kms straight distance | 3hrs 32mins 3hrs 32mins by car (217 kms) | 4hrs 14mins 4hrs 14mins by bus (217 kms) (217 kms)
 L : Pasto - Colombia 134 kms 134 kms straight distance | 4hrs 25mins 4hrs 25mins by car (225 kms) | 5hrs 18mins 5hrs 18mins by bus (225 kms) (225 kms)
 M : Pujili - Ecuador 158 kms 158 kms straight distance | 3hrs 33mins 3hrs 33mins by car (225 kms) | 4hrs 15mins 4hrs 15mins by bus (225 kms) (225 kms)
 N : Tena - Ecuador 154 kms 154 kms straight distance | 4hrs 39mins 4hrs 39mins by car (276 kms) | 5hrs 34mins 5hrs 34mins by bus (276 kms) (276 kms)
Driving times are accurate but approximate and are listed in the order of driving distance! Drive times are always affected by weather conditions, the terrain, time of day, altitude, dinner and bathroom stops, animals on the road, protests, a fast or slow bus driver, police checkpoints, border and river crossings, dropping off and picking up passengers etc. These drive times are obtained from Google Maps and are meant as a guide. Note however, times quoted in the main text of this page are exactly as the author experienced it.


ADD A COMMENT



Pinterest - Pin it!

Quito to Tulcan, Ecuador - A Direct Bus Can Be Hard To Find. 5hrs by bus from Quito up to Tulcan near the border of Colombia, it's a nice journey through the countryside and green hills! You can stop in Otavalo, Ibarra or Quito Zoo along the way.

FREE APP South America Journey

Splash Screen - South America Journey Free App for Android and IOS
Popular Photos Screen - South America Journey Free App for Android and IOS
Favorite Photos Screen - South America Journey Free App for Android and IOS
Fullscreen Photo - South America Journey Free App for Android and IOS
Photos from a Place Screen - South America Journey Free App for Android and IOS

My next travel experience & photos in your inbox!