On the eastern edge of the Laguna Quilotoa crater, this small community-run sustainable tourism enterprise has a tasty lodge and great views. It makes for an excellent way-point on the crater-rim trail hike. You'll find a lovely botanic garden here with bouquets of chuchitos (bounteous purple flowers) and pumpo (reed-looking grass), crafts shopping and a short five-minute trail that takes you up to the crater's edge and an awesome glass-fronted mirador viewing platform (free).
Buses here are infrequent. Your best bet is sticking out your thumb from the turnoff on the Quilotoa road (7km away) or walking here on the rim trail.
The Quilotoa Loop is a bumpy, ring-shaped road that travels from the Panamericana far into the backcountry of Cotopaxi province. Along the way you’ll encounter colorful indigenous markets, a crystal-blue lake that the local people believe has no bottom, a community of painters who are preserving the legends of the Andes and ancient trails that meander in the shadow of snow-capped volcanoes. The isolation of the loop brings you into contact with lots of Kichwa-speaking indigenous people and their centuries-old way of life.
Several villages offer lodgings, and most travelers go from one place to the next by bus, hired truck or their own two feet. The hiking is fantastic, and although guides are inexpensive and a good way to support the local economy,