Tuesday, Aug 23, 2016
I’m glad we decided to stay one more day in Baños. It is a beautiful sunny day and the skies are blue! We set out to find the bus that would take us the 40 minute ride to Casa de Arbol (Tree House) so we could swing “from the edge of the world”. We walked to the bus terminal only to find out that the bus we need is a local city bus, and it doesn’t stop here.
After googling where we could find the bus we headed toward the stop. The information we had said that the bus left every 2 hours for Casa de Arbol. Next run was at 11 am and it is now 11 am. Yikes! We lucked out because the bus was coming down the road we were walking on, and it stopped and picked us up when we flagged it.
At Casa de Arbol there is a restaurant at the base of the hill, and a bar at the top next to the tree house. When we pulled up it started to downpour from a cloud burst so we headed into the restaurant and had some hot coffee until it stopped. It was the right move because when we were finished the skies were blue again.
We walked up to the Tree House and swing. Entrance fee was $1. They have two swings in one area at the edge of the mountain, and one swing at the Tree House itself. There was also a small zip line, and a mud pond with a log crossing it for people to walk over without falling in. We all took turns on the swing and when we finished, enjoyed a cold beer and cheese empanadas at the open air bar.
After enjoying our refreshments it was time to get on the bus and head back into town. There were far fewer stops on the way back and we arrived in town in 20 minutes. The day was still gorgeous so we walked around some more and looked around.
Heidi and Jenni wanted to get a massage and a mani/pedi, so we looked for a place to make that happen. In Baños the town is filled with massage studios so it wasn’t hard to do. We all decided to get a massage, so we even got a discount…$20 bucks for a 70 minute massage, and $35 for the massage, manicure, and pedicure. Pretty good deal.
We found a great place to have dinner. I highly recommend it for anyone visiting Baños! It is called Plantas y Blanco and has an Oriental theme. Shoes must be removed when entering the restaurant. If you aren’t wearing socks they have clean socks for you to put on. The tables are low and seating is on pillows. The Ecuadorian woman wear oreintal like sashes over their clothes.
The food is fantastic. The meat and vegetables are placed skewered on the plate with roasted potatoes and tomatoes placed in between the two large skewers. A side salad is also served. There was so much food that none of us could eat it all and I think the most expensive item on the menu was $10. While we were there we had a guitar player and singer come into the restaurant and play for us for about 20 minutes. It was an unexpected treat and added to the whole experience.
We have had a great time visiting Baños! Even though we didn’t get into a thermal bath while here we had our days filled with great activities. Tomorrow we head back to Cuenca…7 hour bus ride. Oh boy.