We left Banos surrounded by snowtopped volcanoes and several magnificent waterfalls. The hotel was small but luxurious after four days in rainforest huts. We were supposed to go next by public bus to Cuenca further south and higher up (8000 feet) but we rebelled and13 of us hired a private bus so that we could enjoy toilet stops and viewpoints through the Andes. The views were breathtaking and almost all the men and women we saw were wearing traditional dress, which included a trilby hat. The bus cost us $25 dollars each, which didn't break the bank. There are still volcanoes around Cuenca, but less imposing than those further north. Cuenca is the second largest city in Ecuador after Quito, but is more beautiful and better laid out. On the way we stopped and spent an hour at some Inca ruins, not as magnificent as those in Peru, but still impressive. Tomorrow we go to another national park where I expect there will be more waterfalls and lots of great wildlife.