Quickest / Easiest Arrival Route:
Take a flight to Cuenca (CUE). Your international flight will land in Quito or Guayaquil and you will take a short connecting flight to CUE.
At the Cuenca airport, take a 3-hour, $100 private taxi directly to your property, if it is in the Gualaquiza area, or $120 if it is south of El Pangui.
Alternative Arrival Instructions
(Bus Travel from GYE/Guayaquil or UIO/Quito airport)
Arriving in Quito
Walk outside the airport terminal and take a taxi ($20+, ~30 minutes depending on traffic) to Quitumbe bus terminal. Ecuador uses the U.S. Dollar.
Quito Quitumbe bus terminal
At Quito Quitumbe bus terminal go to the ticket booth with cooperativa name corresponding to the bus you would like to take.
Bus times Quito Quitumbe to Gualaquiza:
|9:30AM||Touris San Francisco Oriental|
|6:40PM||Touris San Francisco Oriental|
|8:30PM||Centinela Del Oriente|
If these times are not convenient for you, there are frequent (at least every 1.5 hours) buses to Macas between 7:00am and 23:15pm everyday. From there, take a bus to Gualaquiza.
Bus times Macas to Gualaquiza:
|1:20AM||Touris San Francisco Oriental|
|7:30AM||16 de Agosto|
|2:00PM||16 de Agosto|
|4:20PM||Touris San Francisco Oriental|
|5:20PM||16 de Agosto|
Arriving in Guayaquil
Take a taxi from Guayaquil airport to the bus station (terminal terrestre.) It should be $4-$5 taxi ride, use an official airport taxi parked out front. Or, $2.50-$3 if you call an Uber. It is about 5-10 minutes away. Ecuador uses the U.S. Dollar.
In the bus station, on the first floor, past the long hallway of shops and restaurants, there is another long hallway of bus cooperative ticket booths. Find the one called “Alianza.”
At the Alianza booth, buy a ticket to Cuenca for $8. Say (or show them a written card) “Un boleto para Cuenca, por El Cajas.” This tells them that you want the El Cajas route, which is faster than the other route. There are buses leaving for Cuenca every hour, 24 hours a day, so you won’t have to wait long.
Alternatively, there is one direct bus to Gualaquiza from Guayaquil departing at 10am. To take this bus, in the ticket hall find the ticket booth called “Nambija”. At the ticket booth buy a ticket to Gualaquiza for $20.50.
Your ticket will say “Salida: ” followed by the time the bus leaves.
To find your bus, go up to the third floor of the bus terminal (you will need to take the escalator twice). Go out the glass doors with the sign “SP3” “Andenes 74-93.”
Your ticket will say something like “Anden: 88” which means you need to go to parking spot #88 to wait for your bus’s arrival. The name of the cooperative on the ticket should match the bus. For example, it might say “San Luis” on the ticket and so the bus will have “San Luis” on the side. It will also say “Cuenca” (or “Gualaquiza”, in the case of the direct bus to Gualaquiza) somewhere on the front window. Your ticket says “Asiento: ” with a number, to indicate your seat number. The ride should be around 4 hours (or 12 for the bus to Gualaquiza).
Once you get to Cuenca, skip ahead to where it says “Cuenca bus terminal:”
Arriving in Cuenca
Take an official airport taxi, parked out front of the arrival gate, to the Cuenca bus terminal, “terminal terrestre.” It should be a $1.50 taxi ride, minimum fare (slightly higher at night.)
Cuenca bus terminal
Go to the hallways with the ticket booths. Find the cooperative “16 de Agosto” to buy a ticket for Gualaquiza. You can also find the cooperative “Cenepa / Sig Sig,” which is at the very far end of the long hallway with the turnstiles where people go out the doors to get on the buses. Go into that hallway, turn right and wall all the way to the end to find the Cenepa cooperative.
It will cost $8.75 and is about 4.5 hours ride.
Bus times Cuenca to Gualaquiza:
|5:30 AM||16 de Agosto|
|6:00 AM||Sig Sig / Cenepa|
|10:00 AM||16 de Agosto|
|12:00 PM||Sig Sig / Cenepa|
|2:00 PM||16 de Agosto|
|4:00 PM||Sig Sig / Cenepa|
|4:30 PM||16 de Agosto|
|7:00 PM||16 de Agosto|
|11:00 PM||Sig Sig / Cenepa|
When you have your ticket and it is about 10 minutes before the bus will depart, exit via the turnstile that is closest to the booth where you bought the ticket. You will need to have a dime (USD ten-cent coin) to put in the little machine before the turnstile, this is the bus terminal tax. It will give you a little receipt, then you give the receipt to the guard who will wave you through the turnstile. Then you find the bus of the same cooperative that you bought the ticket from, that will say “Gualaquiza” on the front window, get on and find your seat. Your seat number is indicated by “Asiento” on your ticket.
Gualaquiza bus terminal
When you arrive in Gualaquiza, you can use the additional directions we have given you to get to your property.