Home away from home
I’ve already mentioned how we have been using Airbnb to find places to stay, as opposed to our well-loved, but sort of out of date, Lonely Planet book. The home we are staying at right now has really proved to me why Airbnb is such a success – there is really no other way that we would have found this amazing place.
We decided to stay an extra month in Ecuador based on the fact that this house is so lovely that we can hardly bear to tear ourselves away. It was designed by the owners and although they had some help, they basically built it from the ground up, with their own hands. It’s a family home and an incredibly charming place, with a mixture of exposed cement and wooden beams, chopped from the forest that once stood here.
Sat on top of large hill, getting to and from the house can be a trek but the views, the hosts and the house itself make it well worth the hike. We’ve seen some breathtaking views on our various travels, but these are one of a kind and the sunsets are unbelievable. We spent our first month at the house waking up to fresh air and bird song, while staying in a room that opens on to a terrace overlooking the beautiful city of Cuenca.
A picture of the cotton candy sky I took on our way up the hill to the house.
As well as the trek to the house itself, there is a mountain behind that begs to be climbed. We actually climbed it about a week ago in preparation for another climb we are planning and it, thankfully, wasn’t as scary as the climb we did at Cajas! The family had started building another building here as an extension to the main house, it’s not quite finished yet but they may be picking up construction again from next month. I wish we’d be able to see the finished product, if it’s anything like the main house. There is a picture below of me at the top of the point, standing in the same spot where there may be another house at some time or another.
Once inside the house, I am always struck by how cosy it is. The living area is decorated perfectly with two hammocks and a fireplace. We have spent countless nights curled up in a hammock working away on our computers. We’ve even had the fire places roaring a few times. I can definitely think of worse places to work.
Breakfast is included every morning, which is one of my favorite things about this Airbnb, and it’s the first one we’ve stayed in where this is provided. There is nothing quite like enjoying a fresh cup of coffee and eggs however you like them, looking up and seeing little calibris (hummingbirds), flitting by, drinking some sugar water and going about their business. The garden here is amazing too, full of fresh, beautiful smelling flowers – I can often be found milling around admiring the blooms and trying to take it all in.
Our hosts are so kind, they’ve even offered to adopt us! Although they were joking, of course, we can’t help but see them as our new Ecuadorian family, since they’ve welcomed us and shared their home with us so openly. They are always mindful to include us in whatever they are doing, and invited us to spend Christmas and New Year’s Eve with them. Its tough being away from family during the holidays, but being around such easy, warm people has definitely helped.
Our time here so far has been wonderful. We have another month left and I’m excited to make the most of every second. The hosts are top rated on Airbnb, with good reason, and the house is just a 10 minute $3-$5 taxi journey from the center of Cuenca. I just had to share this place with you so if you ever happen to be in the neighborhood, you’ll know where to stay.
Here is a link to the Airbnb so you can have a look: home away from home
“Chase your dreams, but always know the road that will lead you home again.” -Tim McGraw