Ecuador: Cotopaxi Summit Closure

Contingency plan for upcoming groups should the summit remain closed, as is now anticipated

What is the problem?

Cotopaxi stratovolcano summit is currently closed for climbing due to an unsafe level of gas emissions coming from the crater. This has been the case since an eruption took place in October 2022, with the much-anticipated re-opening date being repeatedly pushed back. 


How much longer will this situation last for?

We don't know. A date for the summit reopening has yet to be established by the National Park authorities, and your host in Ecuador continues to monitor the situation closely.

After initial hope that climbing could be possible from October 2023 onwards, the ongoing uncertainty means that, unfortunately, it is now highly unlikely that any MBA departures up until the end of February 2024 will be able to summit. This disruption to the usual itinerary could well continue further into 2024. 


What is the alternative itinerary?

In the scenario that Cotopaxi is still closed for the date that you are booked to travel, departures are fine to go ahead as planned, but you would be climbing Cayambe (5790m) instead. Cayambe is the only permanently snow-capped mountain on the equator and the third-tallest mountain in Ecuador, after Chimborazo and Cotopaxi, so definitely a worthy alternative. Recent groups throughout 2023 who have summited Cayambe due to the Cotopaxi closure have given great feedback which can be viewed on the trip page. Days 8 and 9 of the itinerary are the only days impacted by this change.


Any further updates will be posted to this page. Our customer service team are always here to help: you can contact them at


Last update: Friday 19th October 2023