Last July marked four years since the UNESCO Man and the Biosphere Program, together with the approval of 195 countries, declared the Chocó Andino as part of the World Network of Biosphere Reserves.
Located 45 minutes from Quito, this forest is an ideal area for adventure, scientific, academic, volunteer, and educational tourism, while allowing you to admire the formidable fauna and flora of the region. The natural sanctuary surprises its visitors with 3,200 varieties of plants, 140 species of amphibians and 270 mammals, among them the spectacled bear, the puma and the olinguito stand out.
The reserve extends across three cantons and the Metropolitan District of Quito is home to 83% of its diversity. The spectacular landscapes and the whistles of the birds accompany the hikers on their adventures and give the roads of the Chocó Andino a magical atmosphere.
This region has five basins and 12 types of forests, of which nine are protectors and more than six private reserves. You can also find the Andean Bear Ecological Corridor, which was created with the aim of protecting the habitat of the emblematic species.
The Pululahua Geobotanical Reserve, located within the Andean Chocó, is one of the few craters in the world where people live due to its fertile land that makes it possible to practice agriculture.
Thanks to community conservation and tourism projects, the towns of Yunguilla and Nono allow tourists to stay in family homes and thus learn about the way of life of the locals, the beautiful houses, and the decorations.
The ‘Festival of the Chocó Andino’ is the annual celebration of the Commonwealth, which aims to continue with local traditions, and commemorate the efforts of those who work to maintain sustainable models of tourism, agroecology, and gastronomy.
For more information, visit https://visitquito.ec/sector_lugar/choco-andino/
Photo credit: James Wheeler