I had booked transport from Hacienda Los Mortiños for 9am. The driver arrived shortly after that. Along the way to Machachi the driver asked if I wanted to stop and have a look at the place where they make Tesalia water, but I felt I rather go on so that I didn’t arrive in Urbina too late. From Hacienda Los Mortiños to the Panamericana in Machachi it took around one hour and the cost was $25 (July 2014).
The driver waited with me at the Panamericana until a bus heading for Riobamba passed. It only took around 10 minutes before such a bus arrived. The bus was probably full because I got a seat in the front, next to the driver. From Machachi to the road leading to Urbina it took 2.5 hours and it was $3. At the junction there are signs saying “Estaciaon de Urbina” and “Museo del Hielo”, and the bus driver knew where that was so I got off at the right ålace. From the highway it is less than 1 km to walk to Posada La Estacion in Urbina.
I took a packed Ecovía from La Marin to Terminal Quitumbe. It was $0.25 (July 2013) and took over half an hour. I had been told to take Bus Mejía from Quitumbe and there I had to ask several persons to find it as it didn’t leave from the same place as the other buses. Bus Mejía enters Machachi while other buses pass on the Panamericana outside Machachi. On the bus the bus attendant said it was going to take 40 minutes to Machachi, but it took over an hour. It was $0.55.
When it was time to go back to Quito I couldn’t find a bus to Quito, but took a bus for $0.25 to the Panamericana. I was lucky and didn’t have to wait as a bus headed for Quito arrived just as I stepped off the other bus. They said that they had room for one person and I got that seat. To Quito (Terminal Quitumbe) it was $0.70, but as they didn’t have change they charged me $0.50.
From Quitumbe back to La Marin it took 35 minutes, and this time it was not as packed as it had been earlier during the day.
- Budget Travel
On the right side of the main Bus Station in Quito, you will find the local buses that go to Machachi. The bus ride takes one hour, costs less than one dollar, and goes mostly through dusty suburbs of Quito before reaching Machachi.
In Machachi, as in any small Ecuadorian town, there are white pickup trucks lined up and waiting to be hailed (see the background of the photo). The first one I asked didn't know the Hacienda, but the second one did. He charged me $10 one way, which is what the Hacienda staff had told me to expect. I actually gave the driver $15 and asked him to come get me the following day at 9:00. The following morning, he and I were both punctual (and surprised that the other one was punctual too).
The road from Machachi to the Hacienda is downright awful, what French people would call une piste. It takes around 45 bone rattling minutes to reach the Hacienda.