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Puyango Petrified Forest


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The Puyango Petrified Forest is home to the largest-known area of exposed petrified wood in South America. After the visit to the petrified forest, a delicious lunch with local flavors will be served at a nearby resort. Then you will visit a local cocoa plantation to learn more about this crop and taste the delicious chocolate they produce.
  • Come face-to-face with petrified wood and marine fossils dating back 60 to 500 million years.

  • Walk along a path closed to regular tourism, led by an important Ecuadorian geologist/paleontologist.

  • Enjoy local Ecuadorian cuisine and its special flavors.

  • Visit an Ecuadorian cocoa plantation, where you can closely observe world-famous cocoa.

The Puyango Petrified Forest is home to the largest-known area of exposed petrified wood in South America. The majority of this wood comes from the Araucarias family, a tree not often fossilized. Fossils and petrified trees in Puyango range from 60 million to 500 million years old. Unsurprisingly, Puyango is considered to be one of the most important petrified forests in the world.

From the port, drive southeast to the town of Puyango, near Ecuador’s border with Peru. Once at the petrified forest, you will begin exploring with the guide. In addition to petrified trees, many marine fossils are visible, which shows that this area was once under the sea.

You also might spot present-day fauna, as well. Several bird species can be found here throughout the year, with equally beautiful butterfly species. There are also spiders, termite hills, and dragonflies. Some of the trees found here are the kapok and ceiba trees.

After the walk, we drive to a local resort, where we have lunch.

Before returning to the quay, you can visit the Cocoa route within the resort. Ecuador is considered the best producer of aroma cocoa in the world and Hillary Resort has more than 220,000 plants of the CCN5 variety. While you walk through the cocoa trails, a guide will give a short explanation. At the end, indulge your senses with artisanal chocolate.

Practical information

  • Language: English.

  • Included: Buffet lunch served at the local resort.

  • Remarks/requirements: Appropriate clothing and comfortable hiking shoes and a cap or a hat Insect repellent is highly recommended from December to April.

  • Walking information: Distance: 1 mile. Terrain: The walk involves surfaces that are uneven, steep and have several steps. During rainy season (December to May), the terrain may be slippery and muddy. There is a wooden walkway along 90% of the trail. The remainder is on an earthen trail.

  • Wheelchair accessible: No.

Penguins perched on the ice of Cuverville Island, Antarctica. Credit: Espen Mills / HX Hurtigruten Expeditions

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