Cotopaxi is Ecuador's highest active volcano at 5897m, located in the Cotopaxi National Park which stretches along the Quito to Riobamba road. It is the jewel in the crown of the Eastern Cordillera, with an almost perfectly symmetrical cone, perfectly visible on clear days. A tour of Cotopaxi forms a wonderful part of the journey down south from Quito, along the Valley of the Volcanoes towards Riobamba to join the Devils Nose Train journey from Alausi.
If you would like to spend longer exploring this lush highland, perfect for hiking or horse-riding, then make time for a stay at one of the historic haciendas close to the national park itself. The haciendas usually offer a number of tours in Cotopaxi such as cycling, fishing and riding, combined with a fabulous atmosphere and delicious local cuisine. They can be reached easily from Quito in a few hours by road.