A Guide To Mindo: A Natural Gem In Northern Ecuador

Engage in Mindo’s natural and human-made delights.

Mindo, a village located in the Andes in northern Ecuador, offers several natural attractions, unique restaurants and environmentally considerate accommodations. With features like the Nambilla Cascadas, eateries like Restaurante Cuyana and lodges like Las Terrazas de Dana Boutique Lodge & Spa, visiting the town may result in a pleasurable experience.


Nambilla Cascadas
Nambilla Cascadas. Facebook: Maaike Smit

Mariposas de Mindo, a garden home to more than 1,000 butterflies, is a site providing guests with a unique opportunity to immerse themselves in an environment with insects that contribute to the surrounding ecosystem’s beauty.

One may explore the farm that focuses on the conservation and reproduction of the butterflies from either ground level or the observation towers, which are constructed with materials from the local area.

mindo valley
Photo by caterina sanders on Unsplash

To involve themselves in other features of the Ecuadorian forests, one can explore the Nambilla Cascadas, a series of waterfalls connected by picturesque hiking trails. Accessible by foot or tarabita, or cable car, the Nambilla Cascadas offer opportunities to engage in the mountainous elements of the forests. Visitors can swim in designated areas while watching for birds native to the region, as well as hike past all of the natural highlights.

The tarabita also provides customers with the ability to see the Ecuadorian landscape, as it takes them above the trees to revel in scenic views in an open-air compartment. Situated approximately 4.3 miles from Mindo, one may access the station by a three-mile hike or car before experiencing several local attractions.


People sitting at a table
People sitting at a table. Facebook: Restaurante Cuyana

In order to indulge in Ecuadorian cuisine, patrons can eat at Restaurante Cuyana, an establishment located in a relatively densely populated area of the village. Offering lunch and dinner options, guests may choose from a selection of dishes with local and organic ingredients. The eatery is also vegetarian friendly and provides vegan and gluten free options.

An approximately three-minute walk away from the eatery is The Food Studio. One has the ability to relish healthy, Ecuadorian food in a minimalist atmosphere at the restaurant, as well as choose from contemporary and fusion dishes. With costs ranging from $3-$30, customers can enjoy their meal at a reasonable price.

Situated 2.5 blocks from both businesses is Mishqui Quinde – Sweet Hummingbird. Providing healthy meals for brunch, lunch and dinner, visitors may enjoy dishes like quinoa pudding and burgers and other vegetarian options. What’s more, one can satisfy cravings at the establishment’s ice cream parlor.


Mindo Casa Divina
Casa Divina Eco Lodge. Facebook: Mindo Casa Divina

Outside of Mindo’s center lies Casa Divina Eco Lodge, cabins constructed from locally harvested wood and surrounded by the Ecuadorian forests. Since the lodge was established in 2005, its owners have promoted environmentally conscious attitudes and exploration of the area, as guests may choose to embark on tours through the valley with Casa Divina Eco Lodge’s sister company, SabinaTour Operator.

Visitors to the area also have the option of staying at Mindo Coffee Lodge Spa, a business with noteworthy surroundings and amenities, such as a nearby coffee plantation and on-site restaurant, pool and spa. With a jacuzzi provided in each cabin, guests can enjoy a relaxing stay as well as a romantic getaway with two glasses of wine and breakfast.

Outfitted with the luxuries of a large resort is Las Terrazas de Dana Boutique Lodge & Spa. As the establishment offers bungalows with private terraces and in-room breakfast, one may relax privately or in the presence of professionals at Mandragora Spa with the sound of chirping birds. The lodge’s restaurant also incorporates nature, as visitors can eat breakfast, lunch or dinner with a view of surrounding mountains on a terrace.

Ray Lewis

Content Editor Associate

Originally from New Jersey, Ray developed a passion for traveling through his adventures in Europe. He created unforgettable memories in Greece and Italy, but is looking to explore more countries in different parts of the world as well.

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