It was 1932 when the whistle first blew at El Tambo train station; the town square and its streets were filled with travelers and merchants who rejoiced at the fact that finally a “bridge” was to join the Cuenca region to the rest of the country. That whistle faded in the last century, and silence, so unlike the coming and going of passengers, conquered the town.
Currently you can only travel a short stretch of the old Cuenca railroad between El Tambo and Coyoctor, a recovered archaeological complex also known as the Baños del Inca (Inca Baths). The project involves local communities in conserving and recovering their cultural Cañari heritage. It features two archaeological museums, an interpretion center and a restaurant.
Traveling times: Wednesday to Friday (minimum 6 people from 9 AM to 4 PM); Saturday, Sunday, holidays: 9:30 AM, 11 AM, 12:30 PM, 2:30 PM, 4 PM.
Tickets $5 round trip + $2 to visit the Coyoctor complex and Tambo museum. www.ecuadorbytrain.com