The friendly, folksy Hacienda el Porvenir is a few kilometres outside Cotopaxi National Park, on the treeless high altitude steppe covering the lower slopes of Rumiñahui volcano. It is very much a working ranch, specialising in wild Andean bulls and dairy cattle, and visitors are invited to take part in farm activities.
Guests stay within the main house or in separate buildings with straw roofs and terracotta-coloured walls made of a woven reed material known as estera. There is a dining room serving meals prepared with fresh local produce, as well as a bar and three cosy living rooms, each with the inviting addition of a fireplace – very welcome on a chilly evening in the highlands.
Guest accommodation consists of rustic, traditional rooms, family suites and five newer suites, which we particularly recommend. The latter have wooden floors, good contemporary heating, double glazing and views over Cotopaxi volcano.
There's a lot to do here: guests with a penchant for the outdoors can go horse riding, mountain biking and zip lining, or venture out on self-guided hikes along well marked trails. Children are invited to make chocolate and help feed the animals. Staff are very friendly, some are genuine chagras – Andean cowboys.