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“A postcard place!”

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The Secret Garden Cotopaxi
Ranked #5 of 247 Quito B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 17 September 2017

The location is superb, it is just like living in a postcard, everywhere is picture perfect. We booked the private cabanas which are so pretty too and with exceptional views (you can see the cotopaxi volcano from the window). At night it goes a bit cold so you have a stove in the room. It was funny as the bedroom is upstairs and the shower downstairs as soon as you go in with the toilet under the stairs :). The food was very good and homely.
For me the best part were the dogs :) so friendly and cute that you would want to take them back home with you.
With respect to the excursions they were nice. The waterfall one was quite easy and highly suggestible. Loved it.
The next day we took the Pasochoa one. I was a bit disappointed here to be honest. This was free as in part of the package we took. When one of the people in charge came to ask us if we want to join we told her yes but asked about the difficulty level and she told us it is hard. We are trekkers but not used to the altitude so i was having second thoughts. She tried to make us chose not to go, at least that is how i felt it. In the end we decided to go all the same and if need be turn back. Most of the people (including the guide) were rushing ahead and we sometimes even got lost as we could not keep up with them. This led them to come back for us. In the end we did it and it was a lovely trek. In my opinion though for treks there should be two people leading.. one at the front and one at the back to make sure that no one gets lost. There were two but one of them was new and was staying at the front too only when we told him that this is not right he stayed at the back. Apart from this I highly suggest it :)

  • Stayed: August 2017, travelled with friends
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank SVELMalta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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14 - 18 of 270 reviews

Reviewed 21 August 2017

Stayed at Secret Garden Cotopaxi for 3 days in a hobbit home. Really nice room concept with great view on Cotopaxi from your bed. Hot shower is outside also with a beautiful view. We did a climb to base camp of Cotopaxi, the waterfall trek and a trek to one of the nearby summits. Worth it. Its a really nice area and the place too. The only thing you have to bear in mind, its more like a "packaged holiday" and you eat all meals together in the group. You have to like that, for us it was ok as the group was quite nice.

Stayed: October 2016, travelled as a couple
Thank capricornus12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 August 2017

I used to live in Ecuador and have traveled thoroughly throughout the country. I feel that I am being fair in this review and hope that it helps other people think hard about spending so munch money on this place.

The view is definitely amazing if the volcano comes out from behind the clouds, but this place is completely overpriced. Why? Firstly, it is run predominantly by volunteers who do not appear to receive any training about the property, the country, or frankly, even how to smile at guests or make conversation. We took a walk to the waterfall and the "leader" failed to count the amount of participants and wasn't sure if any were lost at the end of it all...

We purchased the package that included meals and transportation. We spent over $175USD for two nights as a treat and we learned that we should have spent the same amount for five days to a week anywhere else in Ecuador.

When we arrived at the hostel in Quito for the transportation to Cotopaxi, we were told that they did not have our reservation because it was canceled last minute and rebooked to someone else. They said the system canceled the reservation because they did not receive a deposit, but they did (which, by the way, was a bit of a pain in and of itself). They found our deposit and didn't apologize, but offered to find us some form of accommodation.

They offered us a cabin the first night and then a tent for the second... The cabin was good (costs even more if you want this), but the tent was a ridiculous suggestion given that it was 5 degrees outside, the zipper was broken, and the heater didn't work. We ended up making friends with another couple whose reservation was also messed up and they let us sleep in their bunkbeds. Not exactly the romantic birthday gift I had intended on experiencing, but at least we didn't freeze to death.

Throughout our stay, it appeared as if no one knew who we were as we were left off of lists for activities and transportation, but that didn't bother us much. As for food, the "unlimited" banana bread was definitely not unlimited as people had to keep asking for it and they kept telling us "It's coming"...and honestly...it wasn't great anyway. Plus if you want a glass a pop, you had to pay $1.25 which seems a bit much.. I would suggest bringing your own drinks and snacks if you decide to go. The food was actually good overall, but the lunch is minimal (soup one day and rice and lentils the next).

Honestly, I would have loved to say that the atmosphere was wonderful and comforting, but actually, we were just grateful that we met a couple cool travellers there because everything else was mostly mediocre.

I'd say...If you can't get a hobbit hole, I'm just not convinced this place is worth the long ride and chunk of money.

IF YOU ARE GOING FROM SECRET GARDEN TO BAÑOS---They drop you off on the side of the highway and tell you that busses come through constantly, but we were left waiting over 1.5 hours to get to Baños and had to take a bus to Ambato first. Had I not known we could do this, we may still be waiting on the side of the road. TAKE THE FIRST BUS YOU SEE TO AMBATO AND THEN TRANSFER TO BAÑOS.

  • Stayed: July 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
1  Thank shannanv
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 August 2017

The Secret Garden in Cotopaxi was an awesome experience. I went with my family and I think we all had an equally amazing time. The sites alone that you get from your room make it worth the journey. The grounds themselves are beautifully kept and very clean facilities. I stayed in the hobbit house with my brother, while my parents stayed in a cabana. The hobbit house was such a fun experience and very comfortable. My parents really enjoyed staying in the cabana as it had its own bathroom and plenty of space. They run a wonderful hostel and I loved the communal dining experience as you really get to meet a lot of different people from various parts of the world. My one complaint would be that they downplay the intensity of their hikes, so as long as you go in knowing that what they call easy, is a bit rough if you don't hike on the regular, then you will be fine! I definitely would recommend Secret Garden to everyone!

Room Tip: Try to reserve the Hobbit house as it is not like any other experience.
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  • Stayed: July 2017, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Tracy V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 August 2017

This was an amazing experience. We were blown away by how well taken care of we felt. The Secret Garden takes care of it all - they have a shuttle to get you there, they feed you three (amazing and free) meals a day (plus snacks!), they plan super cool activities (some free, some with cost), they cultivate a really great environment with communal meals and board games and hammocks. There is also beer and wine on site for a good price. You may have to spend a little more money then you would like if you are on a budget but it is well worth it! Wish we could of stayed longer.

Room Tip: Don't worry about a thing! Just show up and they will take care of the rest
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  • Stayed: August 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank Emily M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Secret Garden Cotopaxi

Address: | Via El Pedregal, Quito EC170350, Ecuador
Region: Ecuador > Pichincha Province > Quito
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 247 B&Bs / Inns in Quito
Price Range: RM291 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Katherine and Tarquin, the owners/creators of The Secret Garden Quito, have moved to the countryside where they have been building their dream home and hostel. It's spectacular mountain scenery, it's a beautiful traditional lodge made of mud bricks and thatched roof, it's an eco-friendly self sufficiency project, it's great homegrown herbs and spices,with an exquisite home style food, it's considered an adventure center and it's a relaxation center. ... more   less 

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