great location for:

Two hours drive north from Quito, the landscape changes from high mountain range to lower level tropical cloud forest. The verdant hillsides of Mindo have an incredible number of brightly coloured birds, butterflies, bromeliads and orchids. Ecuador is renowned as a prime birdwatching destination and Mindo has a large number of species, several of which such as the Choco Toucan are endemic to the region.

Mindo can be visited in a day from Quito, but for a more relaxing time spend a few days here. Most of the accommodation tends to be in smaller properties, sitting in a comfy chair on the hotel veranda watching hummingbirds darting in and out is a great way to relax and birdwatch at the same time.

Mashpi Rainforest Diversity Reserve is a private reserve within the Mindo biodiversity region. Just 2.5 hours from Quito this haven for wildlife and biodiversity hosts a staggering 500 species of birds – including 36 endemic species. Monkeys, peccaries and even puma make their homes inside the Reserve, which is criss-crossed with waterfalls between dramatic, verdant hills.