We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Friendly Planet Ecuador tour

Middletown, OH
1 post
1 review
Save Topic
Friendly Planet Ecuador tour

Has anyone used Friendly Planet for their 8 day/7 night guided tour of Ecuador? Groupon has what appears to be a respectable deal on this trip, with airfare, transfers, fees, many meals and attraction admissions included, and I am very interested. We were thinking of going in February 2014. Thanks.

SW MO
Level Contributor
80 posts
121 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Friendly Planet Ecuador tour

Did you book? If so, please let me know how it went. I am thinking about it for the summer.

Boston...
Destination Expert
for Walt Disney World, Orlando, Antarctic Adventures
Level Contributor
6,301 posts
162 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Friendly Planet Ecuador tour

I know this post is very old, but I have done the Exotic Ecuador tour with Friendly Planet. It was exceptional. Our tour guide, Patricio, really went above and beyond. The hotels were quirky and unique in a very good way. The restaurants were very good as well. Be forewarned, that there are some long days on the bus since you drive all over Ecuador.

Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
4 posts
65 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Friendly Planet Ecuador tour

I called Friendly Planet and they told me the longest drives are 3-4 hours to and from the Amazon. Is this not correct?

Boston...
Destination Expert
for Walt Disney World, Orlando, Antarctic Adventures
Level Contributor
6,301 posts
162 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Friendly Planet Ecuador tour

I'm pretty sure we had a six hour day, with stops of course, but it looks like they changed the itinerary for 2015 so the 3-4 hours could be for that trip.

Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
4 posts
65 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Friendly Planet Ecuador tour

Was your 6 hour day just one of the trip days? Was it 2 segments, kinda like 2 3hr. segments broken by lunch? Did you feel there was too much bus overall? I had a Guatemala trip with an 11 hr. day once, broken by lunch and a rest stop and swore I would do nothing like that again. It was mind numbing. And, felt it made too much time on riding around with the loss of time of actual sight seeing. Thanks so much!

Boston...
Destination Expert
for Walt Disney World, Orlando, Antarctic Adventures
Level Contributor
6,301 posts
162 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Friendly Planet Ecuador tour

There was one really long day. I believe it was the drive to Hacienda Leito. It was two long legs with a break for lunch and sightseeing at Banos. Everyday was at least an hour or two in the bus though. The map shows how much traveling you do.

I obviously thought it was worth it in the end, but I know others didn't feel the same. I am not one that can sleep on planes, cars, etc, but I will say that even with the altitude sickness medication I got extremely tired and slept most of the time we were on the bus for more than thirty minutes.

You can google pretty easily the distance between each stop to get a better idea. The roads may have improved by now as well, which could cut down on travel time from my trip 4 years ago.

Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
4 posts
65 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Friendly Planet Ecuador tour

Thank you SO much for all this info. I will google the distances. Now I am wondering about needing altitude sickness med.! Did everyone in general need this?

Edited: 17 August 2014, 22:44
Boston...
Destination Expert
for Walt Disney World, Orlando, Antarctic Adventures
Level Contributor
6,301 posts
162 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Friendly Planet Ecuador tour

I went to the travel doctor before my trip because I was worried about the altitude and malaria. I found that at least half of the people on the trip were on altitude sickness medicine and never got sick. Of the other half, probably 75% got sick and were very uncomfortable the first day. Our guide knew about a local tea remedy and they were fine after taking that and acclimatizing. The rest were on nothing and fine.

The air is just thin when you land in Quito and I found myself getting short of breath from simple tasks and got tired easily, which everyone seemed to be whether on medication or not, until a couple days in. I was 25 at the time and in very good health if that helps you gauge my symptoms.

Altitude is not a problem in and of itself, it is just going from your normal sea level to a high altitude such as Quito. If you took a more gradual route than landing there, it wouldn't be a problem. It is all about acclimatizing your body.

Edited: 17 August 2014, 23:09
Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
4 posts
65 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Friendly Planet Ecuador tour

Your information has been REALLY helpful. We have decided not to go on this trip. To be honest I went on an Amazon river cruise for 5 days a couple years ago, in Peru, without long bus rides to and from, or altitude adjustments, and it was wonderful. This trip, for one or so days on or around the Amazon, would be a little disappointing especially if I were unwell several days of the trip and had to ride MANY hours to get there. I am 67, btw, fit, but have always worried about altitude sickness on trips such as this.

10. Re: Friendly Planet Ecuador tour

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 20 August 2015, 05:16
Get answers to your questions