Cuycocha is a 10,000′ high volcanic caldera containing a sublimely lovely lake, above Cotacachi.
Recently a U.S. friend visiting Ecuador hired a driver, an Ecuadorian tour guide, and an Indigenous tour guide to take us up to the park for a hike around the caldera.
For over a century, the lake has been called Cuicocha, or Cuycocha. “Cocha” means lake and “Cuy” means guinea pig, which is a common food animal here. (We managed not to eat any “cuys” during our stay. ) Our indigenous guide, José Antonio, explained that the real name for this lake, in Quechua, is “Kuychikocha” (kwee-chi-ko-cha) which means “rainbow lake”. As rainbows are not common in this region, a lake with rainbows is a sacred thing. The Spanish conquistadors apparently changed the name of the lake.
Click here for more info: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cuicocha