Tolas de Zuleta - Imbabura
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The Zuleta tolas are located in the province of Imbabura, 30 minutes from the city of Ibarra. These artificial mounds of land are part of the Hacienda Zuleta, built at the end of the 16th century.

It is located two hours from Quito, capital of Ecuador. The farm has 2000 hectares, which belong to the family of the former President Galo Plaza Lasso more than a hundred years ago.


The features of the archaeology of Zuleta are high fields or tolas. They are typical in large Plains with little drainage and associated with quadrilateral tolas with ramp. The association of the high farms and sites with the tolas, suggests according to Gondard and Lopez, the ridges were used during the late pre Inca period.

These ridges, tolas and elevations would have allowed a double harvest. It’s estimated that these high field feed 700 people per square kilometer, as they keep a higher temperature on the surface than the farms located on low land.


Zuleta archaeological space has a set of artificial mounds or tolas and several truncated pyramids. There are in the hacienda 148 tolas and 13 platforms with access ramp. The largest pyramid has 90 x 90 m at its base, 30 m in height and a ramp of 210 m. The mounds are generally circular and some oval.


These artificial mounds were constructed by build-up of Earth and have a constructive technique in which walls of cangagua were used on the four sides. The cangagua is used in blocks and can be easily carved. It’s also known that land in large volumes was accumulated inside the walls until the desired height.


Hemispheric tolas usually are raised near burials, those of elongated or oval shape served as base for the construction of houses; and the truncated platforms were residence of characters of high rank or prestige and were also used for ceremonial activities. This area is part of the integration period time of Ecuadorian History. The place was part of several chiefdoms such as Caranqui, Cochasqui and Cayambe.


Zuleta provides guests a variety of activities and places to visit. Within the hacienda Zuleta you can make horseback riding, also you can choose rides in wagon, bicycle or hiking as well as several tourist trails. In the same way you can visit and meet milking’s, cultivated fields, landscapes of height or the peaceful life of the community of Zuleta. You can also visit the Cóndor Huasi project working in the reintegration of the majestic Andean Condor.

The Hacienda Zuleta is located in the Andean mountains at the North of Ecuador, 110 KM to North of Quito. Take into account that the Hacienda Zuleta journey from Quito can last 2 hours.


Hacienda Zuleta
Hacienda Zuleta, Angochagua
Imbabura Province, Ecuador
Office number of Zuleta: (593) 6 2662 182
Zuleta Quito office address: Carlos Montúfar 356 and Quiteño Libre.

If you want to rest in this place, the Farm House has 15 decorated rooms, with fireplace, gardens, and warm reading rooms. Daily offers homemade food of the region, prepared with organic vegetables, trout and dairy products of the hacienda. The service is considered as luxury; if you want more information you can visit, where you can ask for prices, activities, and services offered by the Hacienda Zuleta.

Remember that due to its proximity to the city of Ibarra and Otavalo, these two cities can also be an option to hostel.

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