Sadly, we are pretty sure the orange drink seen in one of the last pictures from our Otavalo post made Chris sick. Although he was literally getting sick at the bus station, he still boarded the bus so we could head to Baños for the next few days. What a trooper!
As luck would have it, right when we were about to check into our hostel, we heard our names being called. We turned around and low and behold, there were two of our friends from Quito! Turns out Javier and Aliya were staying at the hostel next door to ours.
Our hostel, D’Mathias, is a gem in the backpacker town of Baños. We were referred here from another hostel and have been so happy with the accommodations that we’ve extended our stay from three to six nights.
D’Mathias is not even a year old and is owned and operated by Pamela and Jorge, a sweet Ecuadorian couple who take care of their guests. The hostel is located just one block from the bus station, making it safe and easily accessible for late night arrivals.
For a mere $6 a night per person, you can stay in a private room on a terrace with beautiful rooftop views of Baños.
Our room had its own bathroom (with piping hot water!), exposed brick walls and a flat screen television. They have free towel service and offer quick laundry service. Our laundry was washed, folded and returned to us within three hours for $1 per kilo (2.2 lbs). Upon request, your room will be cleaned each day. They also have WiFi on every floor, providing such a strong internet connection that you can easily Skype without any issues. So far, this is the best internet we’ve come across.
The common room and communal kitchen is a great place to meet other travelers. Plus, you can enjoy free coffee and tea all day in their lovely garden space. The entire hostel is very well kept and extremely clean. We’ve never seen housekeepers work so hard. Every five minutes, someone is mopping or cleaning the common areas. If you are ever traveling through Baños, we highly recommend staying here!
Not even a half a block away from our hostel, we hopped on a Chiva truck with Javier and Aliya to explore the surrounding waterfalls and do a little hiking. Jorge and Pamela can arrange a tour to all of the waterfalls for $3 per person. The chiva stops at several gondolas which can take you across the river for closer views of the more distant falls. There are also a few ziplines and bungee jumping stops along the way for just a few extra dollars.When in Baños, you have to visit the hot thermal baths. Water from the nearby volcano is pumped into the baths twice a day, providing a relaxing (poor man’s) spa-like experience. A big thank you to the Waldkirch’s for gifting us the thermal baths as part of our wedding honeyfund! Our last day in Baños was beautiful. Chris, still not feeling 100%, accompanied me halfway up a hike. Once I reached the top, the view was gorgeous and the setting was so picturesque. Two small boys were flying kites over the mountain edge while horses grazed behind them. Baños offers an array of outdoor activities including horseback riding, mountain biking, white water rafting, canyoning and jungle trips. We couldn’t partake in all of these activities because Chris is still feeling a little under the weather but we still had an amazing time. The small city has a lot to offer and is the perfect place to relax for a few days.
We are off to Guayaquil tomorrow morning where we’ll stay one night before we catch our flight to the Galapagos Islands! Ciao!
Although we received free accommodation and services for our review of D’Mathias Hostel, these opinions and thoughts are our own.