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“Amazing location and family feeling”

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The Secret Garden Cotopaxi
Ranked #6 of 228 Quito B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Barcelona, Spain
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Amazing location and family feeling”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 November 2013

I stayed at the Secret Garden in Cotopaxi for 4nights in the dorm. On my arrival I was met by 15people who were already there and were all laying on the sofas by the fire place. It was clear the location was superb. The volunteers Remi & Victor did a great job of making us feel like at home. No Wifi meant you either talked to the other people or you reclused into your books.
I loved the animals they had as part of the family: Milo, Mash, Daisy(dogs) and Canela the cow! It was easy just to sit there and watchtower he stunning views of Cotopaxi or relax on the sofa. But there are a lot of extreme quality hikes, horse riding and moutain biking. All in all, I would recommend this to anyone with an adventurous spirit who also likes the beauty of nature.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled solo
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Helpful?
Thank Paula G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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236 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (36)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 October 2013

The Secret Garden in Cotopaxi was one of our best surprises on the trip so far. It’s located about a couple of hours from Quito, one hour of it across cobblestone streets in the countryside. We initially thought it was relatively expensive for a hostel (about double the standard hostel rates), but upon arrival, it was became immediately apparent it was worth it. The 3 staff were extremely friendly, and you receive 3 excellent meals per day; not to mention a million dollar view of Cotopaxi. The hostel itself is converted country house that’s very homely with a big fireplace, comfy couches and an array of friendly pets. The staff had adopted an abandoned calf “cinnamon” who was allowed inside and behaved like a dog scratching her head by the fire.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Bjnoel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 October 2013

I loved Secret Garden Cotopaxi! It was a slow, bumpy, 1.5 hour ride from Quito on cobblestone roads, and I enjoyed the view the entire way. You pull up and it's surrounded by peaks, and the landscaping really is gorgeous. The volunteers that are there right now, Sophie, Victor and Remmy, are absolutely amazing and endlessly knowledgable. They sit you down right when you get there, tell you everything there is to do, and are the guides of many of the hikes. Did I mention the stunning view of Cotopaxi? And the baby calf they rescued that likes to sneak inside time to time?

There are activities you get for free with your stay, including a 1.5 hour hike to a waterfall and use of mountain bikes. Most of the other activities are very affordable, and probably my favorite time spent there was just reading by the fire for hours.

I did the 6 hour Pasachoa hike with Sophie and 2 of the house dogs (most well behaved pets I've ever seen). It was a tough hike for me, not having much time to acclimatize, but we took it slow and I highly recommend it. It was a moderately challenging and technical hike, with a good amount of scrambling to keep it interesting, and some flat parts woven in to make it manageable. Only $15!

For $35 I also went horseback riding for 3 hours one morning, it was my first time and the landscaper on staff went with me, and although I don't speak spanish, somehow we figured it out! It was a great way to see the surrounding areas. Also, every outing involves hot tea and cakes.

I stayed one night in a tent, it was on a platform and covered, and there were plenty of blankets to keep us warm. Then, we moved into the dorm (I just wanted more space) and it was the most comfortable bed and bedding I've EVER had in a hostel. There is no electricity in any of the housing, it's kept lit with candles and warm with a wood burning stove.

Lastly, the food. You are in the middle of nowhere, but no worries. You eat often, you eat a lot, and you eat really well!

Room Tip: The dorms were a great value, the tent was as comfortable as camping gets, and I took a peak inside...
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Lauren M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Scottsdale-AZ
Level Contributor
20 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 October 2013

This was the favorite place I stayed on my three week vacation on Ecuador's high land. Pretty, laid back, all meals included. The eating place is in the main house so we had a chance to talk to the other travelers, very interesting people over there. The main house has electricity and internet, the cabins don't, you use candles, there is a fire place, they start the fire for you while you are having your dinner. There are no keys to close your cabin, at first I found it strange, but then I loved it, there is a safe inside the cabin you need to bring your padlock, I used it to safe the passports and money. You can see the Cotopaxi mountain from your room, if it is not covered by clouds, we had a view of the mountain in one full day out of three we were there, beautiful mountain. It takes a while to get in there, it is not far from Quito, but there is a more than a 1 hour stretch of rough road, that requires high clearance 4x4. Several people I met in there came from Secret Garden Quito, some very cheaply, it appears on Tuesdays there is a car from Quito to supply Cotopaxi and they charge less for it, otherwise they charge about $40 for the trip from Secret Garden Quito to Secret Garden Cotopaxi, but I think well worth it. The lodge is about 40 min far from Cotopaxi park parking lot (rough road), they can arrange a guide to take you there (guide is mandatory to enter the park) for about $15 per person. They can also arrange a guide for who wants to climb the mountain, I did not use their guide, I used Gulliver expeditions and regretted terribly, I can't tell if their would be better, but would never go again with Gulliver's (I put a review in there if interested). I want to stress climbing Cotopaxi is not an easy task, but going to the base camp is interesting for people in reasonable good shape.

Room Tip: All is good
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank __-___-_____
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Charleston, SC
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 August 2013

My wife and I spent 3 nights here and made great friends with several of the other visitors as well as with the staff. The volunteers who lead tours and organize everything were hard-working, attentive, and entertaining; wish we could have spent more time with Remi, Sophia and Victor!

The most beautiful scenery we experienced in Ecuador hands down!! The hostel has a beautiful garden and amazing views across a huge valley with horses, llamas, cows and with the Cotopaxi volcano in the background.

If I only had one place to visit in Ecuador, it would be here! Skip the Secret Garden in Quito where the staff is on the frosty side and come straight to Cotopaxi!!

Room Tip: Your own wood stove in the cabins! An awesome addition!
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank jardinero33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Greensboro, North Carolina
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 August 2013

My boyfriend and I originally booked 2 days at the Secret Garden Cotopaxi, but we ended up staying for 5 days. I have nothing bad to say about our stay. We slept on comfortable beds, ate the most delicious food EVER, had amazing hikes with wonderful guides and made awesome friends from all over the world. We didn't want to leave. Next time we go back to Ecuador, we will go straight to the Secret Garden Cotopaxi. Worth every penny!!

Room Tip: The dorm beds were extremely comfortable.
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  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank KaraFrasc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 July 2013

Although this hostel costed $40/person for a 8 person dorm, we loved this hostel so much. There were unlimited towels and teas, a fireplace in the dorm and a jacuzzi. They have free guided trips to little waterfalls and the food was amazing. The locations is not really close to Cotopaxi and the tours for it are really expensive. The staff were all very kind and helpful. Would stay again.

  • Stayed June 2013
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Helpful?
Thank Shirley W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Secret Garden Cotopaxi

Property: The Secret Garden Cotopaxi
Address: | Via El Pedregal, Quito EC170350, Ecuador
Region: Ecuador > Pichincha Province > Quito
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 228 B&Bs / Inns in Quito
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Katherine and Tarquin, the owners/creators of The Secret Garden Quito, have moved to the countryside where they have been building their dream home and hostel. It's spectacular mountain scenery, it's a beautiful traditional lodge made of mud bricks and thatched roof, it's an eco-friendly self sufficiency project, it's great homegrown herbs and spices,with an exquisite home style food, it's considered an adventure center and it's a relaxation center. ... more   less 

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