Karanki Magdalena Community | Located on the Imbabura Volcano



Karanki Magdalena is an Indigenous Community located on the Imbabura Volcano slopes near Otavalo. These families welcome tourists into their homes, providing an immersive experience to learn about the culture.

One of the final resting places of Atahualpa, the last Inca Emperor, Karanki Magdalena, is situated approximately 9,842 feet (3 km) above sea level. This historic site is beautifully surrounded by stunning valleys and serene lagoons, offering a glimpse into the rich heritage and natural beauty of the region.

Enjoy an overnight in 6-family homes

*Total capacity to stay overnight in the community: 33*

A social program

This is a Go Galapagos social program that promotes cross-cultural experiences with travelers from around the globe; guests may participate in local everyday activities and outdoor excursions or stay overnight in family homes.

Experience Authentic Local Life

These families have been trained in hospitality, cooking, hygiene & health and accounting. Tourists can participate in daily local activities such as animal feeding, gardening, and harvesting products such as potatoes, corn, quinoa, and more.

Optional Activities and cultural connections

Participate in activities such as gastronomy lessons (learn how to cook typical local dishes), milking, shepherding, biking, hiking and horseback riding in nearby mountains and hidden treasures such as the Cubilche mount. By night, enjoy a traditional folklore dance, performed by the young members of the community.

  • Roasted Corn: Ancestral Flavors 

Duration: 15 minutes

        • Canelazo: Typical cinnamon spirit beverage, cheers!

        Duration: 15 minutes

              • Animal feeding: Cows, chicken, pork

              Duration: 15 mInutes

                    • Agricultural Techniques: Harvesting, planting – Organic orchards.

                    Duration: 1 Hour

                          • Knead and bake: Traditional cornbread.

                          Duration: 1 hour

                                • Milking: Milk the family cow.

                                Duration: 30 minutes

                                      • Learn hand embroidery: Make your own creation.

                                      Duration: 1 hour

                                          Price: $5 each activity

                                              • Gastronomy lessons: Prepare your own meal with your indigenous family.

                                              Duration: depending on the meal preparation.

                                                    • Bonfire: Enjoy the starry night


                                                    Duration: Until desired by the guests.

                                                          • Shepherding in the Andean Paramo “Tundra”: In a close hill with local shepherds.


                                                          Duration: 2 hours

                                                                • Horseback Riding: See crater formations, abandoned mines, flora, and fauna (Max 8 people).

                                                                Duration: 2 hours

                                                                    Price: $20 each activity

                                                                        Horseback riding

                                                                        What to Bring?


                                                                        • Sunscreen
                                                                        • Insect repellent
                                                                        • Sunglasses
                                                                        • Binoculars
                                                                        • Small waterproof backpack
                                                                        • Camera
                                                                        • Plastic bags for garbage
                                                                        • Umbrella

                                                                               What to Wear?

                                                                          • Comfortable walking shoes or hiking boots.
                                                                          • Rubber boots and rain ponchos.
                                                                          • Waterproof pants.
                                                                          • Windbreakers, warm evening clothes.
                                                                          • Cap or hat

                                                                            The Otavalo Indigenous market, Peguche looms, Cuicocha & San Pablo lagoons, as well as the Cotacachi leather workshops and the San Antonio de Ibarra handcrafts market.

                                                                            From Quito, take the “Panamericana Norte E35” towards the San Pablo Lake (56 miles (90.12 km)); before reaching this lake, take the Ugsha – Zuleta road (9 miles (14.48 km)). From the population of Zuleta, take the main Avenue towards the Magdalena bridge, which is the entrance to this Community (2 miles (3.22 km)). From Quito, take the “Panamericana Norte E35” towards the city of Ibarra (85 miles (136.79 km)), and you’ll reach “Av. Atahualpa”; continue towards the population of Esperanza. Pass by the Atahualpa Museum and continue this road towards the bridge of Magdalena, where this Community begins (6 miles (9.66 km)).

                                                                             The average temperature is 57 ºF (14 ºC) during the morning and 47 ºF (8 ºC) at night. The rainy season goes from September to May, and summer from June to September.

                                                                            No, they don’t, but the guide will be with you, and there are radios in the houses to communicate with each other.

                                                                            Extra activities should be booked beforehand; if not, payments can only be made in cash directly to the family, who will give you an invoice.

                                                                             There are clinics and a hospital in Ibarra 16 km (9.94 mi) away (30 min) working 24 hours.

                                                                            Contact our travel experts.

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