The Cloudforest

Ecuador’s cloudforest is an almost mythical landscape where dense forest canopy and moss-covered trees tower over the bromeliads and orchids. All around the calls of the birds and chatter of the monkeys echo through the lush montane rainforest as mists slink through the lush foliage, adding to the drama of this exquisite environment.


Carpeting the steep slopes of the Andean foothills, Ecuador’s cloudforest is a nature wonderland rich in biodiversity and fairytale-like scenery. The lush montane rainforests soak up moisture directly from the clouds, producing a habitat that bursts at the seams with life. Here you will find a number of enchanting natural splendours, including tall trees covered in moss, vibrant orchids, and countless waterfalls. Days are typically warm and sunny; however, the trees will be covered by a heavy mist for at least some parts of the day.

Ecuador’s cloudforest is a dream for wildlife lovers, home to hundreds of butterflies, spectacled bears, pumas, tapirs, a number of primate species, and a remarkably high diversity of bird life. There have been over 500 bird species recorded in the region alone, many of which are endemic, and range from colourful toucans to vibrant tanagers. Some of the best hummingbird viewings in the Americas can also be enjoyed here, with many eco-lodges hosting hummingbird feeders. You may even get a chance to spot the Andean Cock of the Rock – a species high on the list of many avid bird-watchers.

The best way to explore all the delights of the cloudforest is to make use of the many hiking trails that cut a path through the vegetation. Trekking through the dense tropical forests you will get to experience all of its unique sights and sounds, discovering hidden waterfalls, pristine streams, and strikingly colourful species of flora. The activities to be enjoyed here are endless, and include tubing along the gentle rapids of the Mindo River, abseiling above the treetops, and mountain biking through untouched trails. Why not take the experience even further and swim in the waterfalls themselves, or learn about the properties of medicinal plants from an expert in the field.

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