Ecuador railway set to re-open in June

22nd Mar 2013

When Ecuador's famous railway re-opens in June travellers in the country will be given the chance to savour a picturesque route that hasn't been enjoyed since the late 19th century.

After a painstaking regeneration project, which has cost $280 million (£185m) to complete and involved hundreds of miles of track and station renovation, the rail route is expected to deliver a significant tourism boost for Ecuador.

The route begins in Quito, which is high in the Andes, and travels down to Guayaquil on the Pacific coast, incorporating the Valley of the Volcanoes and the infamous Nariz del Diablo (Devil's Nose) along the way.

If savouring such unique environments - the Devil's Nose is probably one of the steepest railway stretches - isn't enough, passengers will also be travelling in classic style via perfectly restored 20th-century steam trains.

After setting off from Quito, the train takes passengers through to the historic town of Machachi.

As it moves towards the 'Valley of the Volcanoes', passengers get a great view of Cotopaxi, one of the highest active volcanoes in the world, along with a series of other snow-capped peaks.

At its highest point, Urbina station, the route reaches 3,609 metres and travels close to Chimborazo, which is the highest mountain in Ecuador.

It is after this the train heads towards Devil's Nose, which has been popular with tourists for a long time.

The challenges faced by engineers when trying to build this section of the route actually saw it given the nickname "the most difficult railway in the world".


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