TopRail is a UIC project. The purpose of TopRail is to enhance the visibility of railway tourism products and to encourage train and tourism opportunities by collaboration between stakeholders. If you are an operator, consider joining us.

Ecuador Tren Ecuador

Tren Ecuador is the commercial Brand of Ecuadorian Railway Company. It operates heritage tourist trains that offer a unique way of exploring Ecuador. Along 500km of carefully renovated tracks it offers one-day train rides to the best-known tourist attractions in the country, such as Otavalo area, Nariz del Diablo and the Avenue of Volcanoes.
Tren Ecuador is also the exclusive operators of renowned Tren Crucero, an impressive 4 day 3 nights trip along the Andes and down to the pacific Coast. Tren Crucero has been acknowledged among the best 10 tourist trains in the world, and also as South America Luxury Leading Train.

Expeditions: full day tours divided into 4 regions:

Northern Andes

Tren de la Libertad | Ibarra to Salinas
With seven tunnels dug with pick and shovel and tall bridges across steep canyons, the la Libertad Train offers a unique journey starting from Ibarra, the “White City” to reach the warm Salinas, where we are received to the tune of la “bomba”. In Salinas you’ll discover colorful murals commemorating the history and culture of Afro-ecuadorian people. Visit its museums and enterprises and enjoy the local cuisine in a trip full of memorable experiences.

Tren de la Libertad | Otavalo to Salinas
Visit Imbabura, the most diverse province of Ecuador. From Otavalo, home of the country’s largest Indigenous market, to Salinas, where the culture and history of Afro-Ecuadorians is alive and present in its streets, Tren de la Libertad takes you through the history, music, gastronomy, crafts and the amazing landscapes of northern Andes. You will find unique experiences in San Roque, Andrade Marin, San Antonio, Ibarra, Hoja Blanca and Salinas de Ibarra stations, in a trip full of contrasts.

Central Andes

Tren de los Volcanes | Quito to Cotopaxi
The adventure begins in Chimbacalle station, from where we depart southwards to the “Avenue of the Volcanoes”. Pichincha, Atacazo, Pasochoa, the Viudita, Rumiñahui volcanoes, among others flank the railway. The road descends through the “jungles of Panzaleo” whence wood for building the churches of Quito came from, through grasslands, croplands and haciendas.

In Tambillo and Machachi we’ll enjoy the cuisine and culture of the chagras, the Ecuadorian cowboys. In El Boliche, at the foothills of Cotopaxi, we discover its singular flora and fauna in an easy trek, then return to Machachi for lunch and a visit to “Granja La Estación”, a beautifully kept farm home of native and exotic animals.

Southern Andes

Tren del Hielo | Ambato to Urbina (Chimborazo)
This train combines scenery, culture and shopping in a journey that takes us from the temperate valley of Ambato to the Andean high plateau – known as paramo- of Urbina, more than 4,000 meters above sea level in the foothills of Chimborazo. There, the last Ice Merchant of Chimborazo and custodian of this ancient trade await us. Those willing to stay overnight in this unique place can book a comfortable room at the Train Mountain Lodge.

Tren del Hielo | Riobamba to Urbina (Chimborazo)
The adventure begins in Riobamba, a typical Andean city located in the Ecuadorian Central Andes. A clear day view is breathtaking: Capac Urcu volcano rises above the horizon with its five-peak crowned summit; witnesses of a past eruption a thousand years ago. The Majestic Chimborazo – Ecuador´s highest peak and the closest point to the sun from the center of the Earth, – rises northbound. As we move north, if we are lucky, the shy Carihuairazo volcano might appear amidst the fog from time to time. Once at Urbina station we meet Baltazar Ushca, the man who braves low temperatures and high altitude to harvest ice from the bowels of Taita (father) Chimborazo. Tourists from every corner of the world come here to learn about this ancient trade while enjoying ice-creams prepared with this very same ice and blackberry juice.

Just before we depart to Riobamba, we pay a visit to La Moya. The descendants of the ancient Puruha people wait for us to share their once secret daily live in the Andes and enjoy a typical lunch in the paramos of Chimborazo volcano.

Devil´s Nose | Alausí – Devil´s Nose – Alausí
The biggest complication faced by the construction of the Trans-Andean railroad was the Devil’s Nose, a mountain with almost perpendicular walls. To overcome this obstacle a zigzag railroad was built that climbs more than 500 meters in less than 12 km with steep ascents and descents. It today remains an impressive piece of engineering. While recovering from the mind-blowing descent you will enjoy the views of the narrow gorge of river Chanchán and will have the chance to learn a bit about the traditions and worldview of the Puruhuas in Sibambe.

Pacific Coast

Tren de la Dulzura | Durán – Bucay – Durán
Enjoy a day of adventure in Bucay, reliving the railway history of Ecuador. From the comfort of your seat in a renovated convoy with air conditioning and bar service, you will discover the changing landscapes of the Coast: from plantations to the cloud forest, through the historic town of Yaguachi. An unforgettable adventure to enjoy with the whole family or with your friends.

Costa Sierra | Durán – Alausi – Duran (2 Days)
The “impossible train” once linked the Coast and the Highlands, allowing the easier exchange of voices, colors and products from every corner of the country. Enjoy the excitement of discovering the hidden treasures along this journey: Bucay, Huigra, Sibambe and finish in Alausí, the city on the edge of the mythical Devil’s Nose. Crafts, folklore, gastronomy, nature and the most amazing landscapes of Ecuador await you.

Tren del Cacao (Cocoa Train) | Durán – Danesa Hacienda – Durán
Discover the historical route that resemble the construction of the Trans-andean railway from the intense coastal plains to the majestic Andes while visiting the exclusive Hacienda La Danesa. The property was established in 1870 along with the first railway stations built in the Ecuadorian coast. Discover live in a classic “Montubia” hacienda while learning how to prepare artisans chocolate with cocoa harvested from the best plantations in the world and enjoy cuisine in a “farm to fork” style with local produced ingredients in a sustainable manner from the very same hacienda.

Tren Crucero | Quito to Guayaquil or Guayaquil to Quito (4 days)
Experience the wonders of Ecuador on board Tren Crucero, recognized as the Leading Luxury Train in South America in 2014, 2015 and 2016. Modern, electric-diesel, and lovingly restored, antique steam locomotives pull a high-quality convoy of two luxury, Colonial and Republican-style themed passenger cars carrying just fifty passengers, to ensure personalized service for all. A bar and gift-shop car with two comfortable observation lounges and an open-air terrace complete the setup of this comfortable, select boutique trains.

Tren Ecuador