We have been longtime fans of Peru Hop, an excellent bus company which brings travelers to top attractions and off-the-beaten-track hidden gems throughout Peru. This company runs a type of service that is known as a “hop on hop off” bus. The idea is that you buy a pass for a particular route ( Lima to Cusco, for instance). You begin at your selected starting point (often Lima), and when you get to the next destination you “hop off.” You stay as long as you want, then you “hop on” and continue your journey. The passes are good for a year, so you can stay as little or as long as you’d like in each stop.
We found this to be a great way to travel. It offered just the right mix of a guided tour and independent travel. Not being on a local bus means that you are with other travelers, which makes it really easy to make friends with other like-minded people. You really get to know the other passengers, since many of you will be traveling the same route. As far as the “hop on” aspect of the bus, we loved the ability to change our itinerary easily and as many times as we want. A standard local passenger bus simply cannot compete with that level of flexibility.
Many people who visit Peru will do so on a longer trip through South America, also visiting neighboring countries like Ecuador. Based on our glowing review above, you can see why we were so excited to hear that Ecuador Hop will soon be launching! This new service will bring visitors to places like Montañita and Baños with the same flexible hop on hop off concept that they perfected in Peru. If this is anything like what we experienced while traveling in Peru, this new service should be amazing! Buses officially begin running in February 2019. For more information or to book a pass, make sure to visit their website at ecuadorhop.com.