Teleferico Lift Ride to Climb Pichincha Volcano near Quito, Ecuador

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Teleferico is one of the highest city gondola lifts in the world. You can just enjoy the lift ride and take a cup of coffee or lunch at the restaurants at the top of the Teleferico. The lift drop point station is 4100m high and offers an amazing view over the entire Quito and surroundings area.

Teleferico View
Teleferico View

How to get there:

Public transportation is probably not the best option to get to the gondola. I took a taxi that cost me $5 from the Mariscal area. You can pre-arrange one from your hotel/hostel or bargain at the street.

Climbing Pichincha Volcano:

After you enjoy your lunch or cup of coffee with the stunning view over Quito and if you are up for a more physical challenge you can hike up to the Pichincha Volcano (4,784m). It will take no more than two hours to get up there and a bit over an hour to go down. The terrain at the beginning is relatively easy and should take you not more than an hour. Then, the path is getting more narrow and steep before approaching the top. Get ready to use your hands for the last 100 meters before you get to the top 🙂

On your way to the top
On your way to the top
Climb Starting Point
Climb Starting Point

What to bring and how to stay safe:

The weather is changing constantly so be prepared with an extra piece of warm clothes and a rain jacket. On my way to the top it rained at least 5 times 🙂

You should also wear good hiking shoes. Expect to have wet rocks on your way up since the terrain is muddy and sandy all the way 🙂

If you are not acclimatized to Quito altitude, you will probably experience altitude sickness. If you feel dizziness or stomach problems – stop for a moment, breathe deep and calm down. It’s important to drink a lot of water so that you don’t leave your body dehydrated. If you still feel sick, give it up and go down to a lower altitude.

Oh, and bring some snack with you as well as at least 2 liters of water especially if you do this alone.

And of course don’t forget your camera.

On top :)
On top 🙂

Usefull TIPS:

The best time to do the entire trip is early in the morning. This is your best chance for clear weather – so you can enjoy the view and have more time to climb the Pichincha Volcano, to stay there and relax and then have enough time to go back.

The path to the volcano can become very narrow and steep and if it’s crowded it can be unpleasant and even dangerous. So if you have a chance try to climb the Pichincha in a weekday.

Looking for more activities in Quito area?

Check out our complete guide for Quito and surroundings here:

Top things to Do in Quito


Have you ever climbed a volcano? What’s the highest one? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below!

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