And thanks to its compact size, there are a ton of things to do in Ecuador. I was awe-struck by its gold-embossed sanctuary and massive baby blue mosaic domes that are the hallmark of Cuenca’s historic downtown. This is the version of our website addressed to speakers of English in the United States. If visiting in June, be sure to check out the famous Inti Raymi (Festival of the Sun) music festival featuring numerous local musicians with their distinctive instruments and sounds. Celebratory foods and drinking are always part of Ecuadorian holidays. Tours, activities and experiences bookable on Tripadvisor, ranked using exclusive Tripadvisor data, including reviews, ratings, photos, popularity, price, and bookings made through Tripadvisor. The Galápagos Islands: Ecuador's prime attraction is a naturalist's paradise. Carnival. One of the most popular areas due to its many beach resorts is the coastal city of Salinas, located a little west of Guayaquil and boasting a consistently warm climate year-round. For a real treat, take a tour boat on an evening trip up the river, when the city is lit up to beautiful effect. The Afro-Ecuadorians that are present in Ecuador today are famous for their marimba music and many music and dance festivals. excellent, fantastic, fun and very patient tour guide. In the southeast part of the country, its humid mountain forests are home to more than 4,000 species of plants and trees (some as tall as 40 meters), including the famous cinchona, Ecuador's national tree. Best of all, they can be experienced in a short period. Named for the giant tortoises on the islands, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is home to a unique ecosystem that largely evolved without outside influences (mainland Ecuador lies some 1,000 kilometers to the east) and offers an exceptional opportunity for wildlife viewing. Cultural Tourism: Quito, Ecuador The Spanish founded modern-day Quito and Guayaquil as part of their political administration era, which lasted until the War of Independence. Most are related to the agricultural calendar or specific historic events. As I listened to the choir singing lyrical … He really filled our days; spending at least 12 hours per day driving us around while explaining and showing us the sites, This is the Quito City Tour bus — red bus with open top deck — which makes 13 stops throughout the city. More sedate things to do include visiting landmarks such as the Virgen de Agua Santa church with its famous statue of Mary (it's claimed she appeared at one of the town's waterfalls) and shopping for local goods such as colorful carved balsa parrots while enjoying the town's famous "melcocha," a type of candy made from cane sugar. Since their "discovery" in the 16th century, the Galápagos Islands have intrigued and inspired visitors from around the globe. About Ecuador. ... Art & Cultural Attractions in Quito; Tourist Attractions in Quito. In a pleasant valley surrounded by mountains lies the picturesque town of Otavalo. Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the city brims with splendid colonial influences and architectural treasures spanning 400 years and encompassing both Spanish and Indian elements. Looking to expand your search outside of Ecuador? A local businessman and his wife donated this collection and their former home to the Ministry of Culture and Heritage for the enrichment of the Ecuadorian people. Ecuador's largest city in terms of population (2.3 million), the Pacific port of Guayaquil is well known as the gateway to the Galápagos Islands. It is said that Cotopaxi is the highest active volcano in the world. The highlight for those who enjoy exploring on foot is the magnificent Malecón 2000, a two-and-a-half-kilometer-long boardwalk adjacent to the Guayas River. Places of interest and tour operators are then listed, promoting those where there is at least one tour or activity available to book on Tripadvisor. We have reviews of the best places to see in Ecuador. Most consider Quito to be the cultural capital as well as the political capital, and a visit to the well-appointed art museum shows why. Visit top-rated & must-see attractions. Adventurers will enjoy opportunities to mountain bike and climb snow-capped volcanoes. Cotopaxi National Park is renowned for its active Cotopaxi volcano that lures in both tourists and locals alike. specialized Naturalist Guides that escort your excursions every day. very professional, friendly and secure (his name is Luis). To learn more about the top things to do in Ecuador, be sure to read this list of the best attractions in this lovely country. National Museum of AustraliaCanberra Out to the Shed Fremantle PrisonPerth Prison Art and Behind the Scenes Tour National Gallery of VictoriaMelbourne Private Gallery Dinner: The Banquet of Cleopatra Mona (Museum of Old and New Art)Hobart and the Tasman Peninsula Rockstar Afternoon Cover some of Quito's highlights, including the Middle of the World (Mitad del Mundo) and the Pululahua Crater, on this double-decker bus tour. Find what to do today, this weekend, or in December. Here is the list of things to do in Quito and tourist attractions … The Old Town's old bus terminal has been converted into a sparkling covered cultural center and sports complex with a volleyball court, soccer pitch, climbing wall, yoga studios and several small swimming pools While visiting the cultural attractions in Quito would prove to be informative, attending its artsy events will leave you entertained. Ecuador is a wildly diverse country. Natural World Heritage Sites: While many people think of World Heritage Sites as being cultural, UNESCO also designates Natural World Heritage Sites. Ciudad Mitad del Mundo contains other attractions such as a planetarium, a miniature model of Quito, and restaurants. The art and cultural activities in Quito will give you an insight into the city's history, traditions, and artwork. Dating back to the first half of the 1500s, the church's white-washed twin towers flank each side of the entrance to this massive complex. It also offers historical attractions such as Quito, food and a variety of cultures and traditions. trip, surfing/bodyboarding lessons and then some sea kayaking and snorkelling, which really made up for the canceled trip! Two of Ecuador's most popular national parks, Cotopaxi and Cajas, are within easy driving distances from the cities of Cuenca and Quito and make wonderful day trips. Zoom in to see updated info. 1. High in the Andes, Quito, the capital of Ecuador, is filled with colonial architecture and is the largest historic center in South America. La Mama Negra is one of the oldest in the city and it is a display of the varied cultural influences from its Spanish, Aymaran, Incan, … In fact, if … Carnival takes place 40 days before Easter each year, prior to the Catholic fasting period. itself,however the La Pinta just made the experience so perfect.The boat was fantastic and very comfortable.Very comfortable rooms and a lovely outdoor deck area.T... ... required during our tour (Paola has been of tremendous help), but the mountain guide we had to climb up. For those who enjoy their river action a little smoother, Tena also boasts a superb pedestrian bridge and tower high above the Tena River offering great views of the city. Highest rated places of interest or tour operators on Tripadvisor, based on traveler reviews. workshops, the second day we visited the Cuicocha lagoon and the alpacas project, th... That would be too much for us, but Luis worked out an option to drive us up a jeep road to the. knew less crowded options for walks in popular parks. Things to Do in Ecuador, South America: See Tripadvisor's 564,368 traveler reviews and photos of Ecuador tourist attractions. ECUADOR A destination you must visit Choose Ecuador as your holiday destination! In addition to its many historic sites, Guayaquil boasts great shopping and entertainment venues in its many picturesque squares and plazas, as well as along its splendid waterfront. Despite its small size, Ecuador is a major cultural center for arts in South America. Yet Ecuador’s nuclear family has some problems. Let yourself be amazed by its culture expressed majestically in its churches, buildings and heritage cities For example, in Quito, discover the Best Preserve Historic Center in South America. One of the top things to do here is to explore Plaza Grande, a beautiful square surrounded by important points of interest, including the cathedral, the Presidential Palace, the Archbishop's Palace, and the Municipal Palace, as well as Calle La Ronda, a buzzing street lined with restaurants, cafés, art galleries, and other entertainment. am happy to see that there are more and more travel agencies which combine the luxury of traveling but also focus on... the dock when we disembarked and quickly escorted us to an immaculate and roomy van with perfect A/C for just the four of us. Domestic abuse is a widespread social ill — it is estimated that 30 percent of Ecuadoria… which shows how genuinely nice and helpful she was, she was in the business for the passion of help... 5 days amazon trip and a 5 days cruise trip on the Galapagos Islands. Cotopaxi And Cajas National Parks Cotopaxi is one of Ecuador’s most popular national parks and is located just a short drive from the city, Quito. Map updates are paused. Paul spoke excellent English and was quite knowledgeable about. It's notable for its splendid Baroque interior and the Convent Museum of San Francisco with its religious paintings, sculptures, carvings, porcelain, textiles, and handcrafted furniture. there counterclockwise around the west end of the rim, finishing on the so... We had three days before and after the fantastic Galapagos Islands to explore Quito and it's surrounds and it was just us and our very friendly, knowledgeable, Isabel was a great help with suggestions on where to stay and what to see as well as adjusting. This beautiful country is a paradise everywhere you look at it. The Presley Norton Museum displays a collection of more than 8,000 pieces of art from the pre-Columbian Valdivia culture. Discover the best attractions in Quito, Ecuador including Iglesia de la Compañía de Jesús, TelefériQo, Casa Museo Guayasamín. The most famous attraction in Quito's historic center is the San Francisco Church on the Plaza San Francisco. The far-north coast of Ecuador has a historical and cultural background that sets it apart from most of the rest of the country, with cultural traditions whose roots stretch across the globe. If you visit the … The westernmost point of Ecuador has three main attractions: La Fae Beach, with a boarded walkway where you can watch a seal colony; El Morro (or little hill), … “ Highlights included spotting howler and capuchin monkeys, many beautiful birds, iguanas, tasting two different kinds of cacao beans, grinding and eating fresh roasted cacao, eating a fresh caught fish, and … Ecuador Things to See and Do Below you'll find the best sightseeing, attractions and Cultural Tours in Ecuador as rated and reviewed by local experts, VIVA's on-the-ground travel writers in Ecuador, and by travelers like you. Dating back to the first half of the 1500s, the church's white-washed twin towers flank each side of the entrance to this massive complex. Finally, Podocarpus National Park, often referred to as the "Botanical Garden of America," offers a diverse range of flora and fauna. As you wander Cuenca's pleasant narrow streets, be sure to spend some time exploring the many squares and parks, including Calderon Park in the heart of the old town; Plaza San Blas Square, dominated by the Church of San Blas; and Plaza de San Francisco with its merchants selling textiles and other goods. He was friendly, personable, answered all kinds of questions, and, with his background in biology, was incredibly knowledgeable. Discover destinations, find outdoor adventures, follow the journeys of our travel writers around the world, and be inspired. … The beautiful city of Cuenca—officially known as Santa Ana de los cuatro ríos de Cuenca and home to some 330,000 souls—is located in southern Ecuador and is a delightful place to explore on foot. sites was amazing and made our few days with them unforgettable. Everything wend according to the plans, the. Museo Nacional del Banco Central del Ecuador (New Town; Quito): Ecuador's largest museum is also arguably its best. Famous as Ecuador's cinnamon capital, Tena was established by missionaries not long after the Spanish arrived in South America and is an increasingly popular destination for travelers due to its many opportunities for adventure. the best guide to take you around Quito's local art, history and culture. San Francisco Church and the surrounding Old Town area are considered one of the most important cultural centers in Latin America and are one of the main tourist attractions in Ecuador. Whether you're a train enthusiast or not, this spectacular part of the Andes mountains near the town of Alausí is best seen aboard one of the country's superbly restored railways, part of a network that stretches across the country to some of its most scenic locations. Ecuador - Ecuador - Daily life and social customs: Most Ecuadorans place great emphasis on the family, including fictive kinship, which is established by the choice of godparents at baptism. Everything about the adventure was perfection: to every detail, great food, and an engaged and knowledgeable guide. The Galápagos Islands remain one of the most active volcanic regions in the world, and the formation of the islands is still in progress. The anthropological and historical displays of the pre-Columbian inhabitants are extensive, interesting, and beautifully displayed. I have done 5 tours with Ecuatraveling (Cotopaxi mountain biking, Cotopaxi sumit hike. Find what to do today or anytime in December. ... family, everything was excellent and full of learning, On the first day we made. Built in 1567 from stones taken from nearby Inca buildings, highlights include its old organ from 1739, its tower clock from 1751, and the Museum for Religious Art. gigantic tree in the Napa region, visiting the Sinchi Warmi Chocolate Factory (Sophia was our excellent host), and then the Lagoon for a long boa... of “Let’s Go to Ecuador!” during our early June stay in Quito: Quito Panoramic, Mindo Cloud Forest, and the Tour to Otavalo, Cotacachi & Cuicocha Lake. Cuenca’s Christmas Eve Pas del Niño parade, or Passing of the Child, is a colorful, often bizarre, mixture of the religious and the profane. Thanks to Paola at Happy Gringo, six weeks later we were on a beautiful boat exploring these magical islands, swimming with sea turtles and sea lions. Other notable items are the unique tagua nut jewelry, leather goods, indigenous costumes, as well as many interesting food items, in particular locally-produced spices. We have suggestions. By Donna Stiteler I remember being enthralled on my first visit to The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Cuenca, a UNESCO Heritage site known for its ornate churches and 16th and 17th century French republican and Spanish colonial architecture. There are no pins in your viewport. Highlights here are jungle excursions into the Amazon, along with fun river journeys, including whitewater rafting; canoeing; and kayaking down the Tena, Misahualli, and Napo Rivers, the latter of which flows directly into the Amazon. Try moving the map or changing your filters. Also, there are diverse local handcraft stores and local food served at several cafés along a colonial small town. Quilotoa crater lake and Mindo cloud forrest) they were all amazing bar 1. The beaches of Salinas, Bahía, and Montañita. on a nature "high" -- Kicker Rock snorkeling and surfing Tortuga Bay on San Cristobal, Tortuga Bay and Highlights Ranch on Santa Cruz and Los Tunnels and surfing ar... All of our guides were excellent, with a shout out to Andres for help with trip planning. The Cotopaxi National Park is … excellent, and, well, the islands themselves are gorgeous :) It was definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience! More than making up for its small size with an array of indigenous cultures, colonial architecture, scenic landscapes, and dense rainforests, Ecuador is one of the most fascinating nations in South America. Eva has done a marvellous job putting our numerous wishes into. This gothic style behemoth boasts beautiful stained-glass windows and animal carvings inspired by the Galapagos Islands. Visit top-rated & must-see attractions. On weekends, Ciudad Mitad del Mundo's Central Plaza hosts varied musical and cultural events for tourists. Quito may not be as popular as other cities in Ecuador, but don’t let that fool you. The term compadresrefer to couples who serve as godparents to each other’s children. The basilica towers over the rest of Quito and can be seen from various points throughout the historic center. The Church of San Sebastian with its mix of Gothic and Neoclassical elements is also worth seeing. 11 Top-Rated Beaches in Colombia. Ecuador is crossed from north to south by a volcanic section of Andes 70 volcanos, being the higher the Chimborazo, with 6310 m West of the Andes is the Gulf of Guayaquil and a wooded plain; at east, the Amazon. Other beautiful churches to visit include La Compania de Jesus Church, constructed in the early 17th century and listed by UNESCO as one of the top 100 most important buildings in the world, and Quito's cathedral, Basílica del Voto Nacional, constructed in the 1560s. Thanks to its lovely surroundings and numerous hot springs, the small town of Baños de Agua Santa is a popular tourist destination within central Ecuador. ... company.The whole trip wan organized very well with great accomdations,very comfortable bus with a very safe driver. 13 Top-Rated Attractions & Things to Do in Quito. A visit to the stunningly beautiful Nariz del Diablo ("The Devil's Nose") should be on everyone's bucket list. Over 500 species of birds and some 15,000 species of flora can be found here, as well as freshwater dolphins, 11 different species of monkeys, anacondas, caimans, and jaguars. The Festival of La Mama Negra takes place in the town of Latacunga in Ecuador at the end of September and again during the week of November. ride and hike through Churute Mangroves Ecological Reserve, a visit to a local cacao farm, AND a tour of the city of Guayaquil. Madrid, Lisboa, Tangiers, Amsterdam, Rome, Venice and the walking tours of Quito have been the BEST!!! While best known for its ecotourism and adventure travel opportunities, Ecuador also boasts a number of beautiful beaches worth visiting, whether for a short break from sightseeing or as a base for a longer sun, sand, and sea vacation. Quito, and Teo in the Galapagos, who saved me when I was headed to the airport and f... San Luis and the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception (New Cathedral; considered the largest in Latin America), which its const... through to the knowledgable guides they provided (Dario for Quito tour including detour to see the Easter procession and Edison for Mindo, Cotopaxi,... Our tour guides on site were excellent as well (Guido. Quito is a smaller but beautiful upcoming tourist destination that is worth a visit. Located at the western edge of the Amazon basin, Baños is nestled among dense jungle-like forests and offers numerous recreational opportunities including hiking and mountain biking. Most of the 13 large islands, six smaller islands, and 42 islets that make up the Galápagos were declared part of the Galápagos National Park in the 1950s, and visiting this fragile ecosystem can only be undertaken as part of a guided tour to designated visitor sites (there are, however, one or two areas visitors can go without a guide, including some areas popular with scuba divers). Another excellent place from which to experience some of the vast Amazon basin is the city of Tena, capital of the province of Napo. When the Spanish Conquistadors took over this area, they indoctrinated the indigenous people into the ways of the Catholic Church. Apart from baptism, important occasions in the life cycle include the quinceañera (the 15th birthday of girls), marriage, and funerals. Undoubtedly one of the world's most memorable promenades, this remarkable urban renewal project winds along the river's west shore past many of the city's best attractions, including important historical sites, gardens, museums, and entertainment. You'll have the chance to experience the rich culture of the Andes, including a visit to the Puñuna Condor Museum with its exhibits and displays relating to the area's indigenous people. Book your tickets online for the top things to do in Quito, Ecuador on Tripadvisor: See 196,346 traveller reviews and photos of Quito tourist attractions. The historic city center is also where many of Cuenca's key attractions lie, one of the most important being the Old Cathedral of Cuenca (Iglesia del Sagrario). Pichu), our driver Alexander was great as well, sweet and courteous. A complete review about Quito Ecuador cultural and archeological sites like, Equinoccial line, Cochasqui Astronomic site, La Mariscal Tourist district, Quito Museums, Quito churches and Quito Historic Center - Unesco Heritage, Quito parks and other cultural attractions in Quito The Zoo at the Parque Histórico Situated on a pretty peninsula jutting out into the ocean, Bahía attracts many tourists with its fine beaches, numerous hotels, and lively entertainment scene. The people of Ecuador have a rich cultural history, comprised of both indigenous and Spanish roots.Ecuadorians typically celebrate with parades, public dances, and loud music. The main attraction here are its many bird species, of which 28 are unique to the islands, including the Galápagos penguin, flightless cormorant, and waved albatross, and the 13 species of Darwin's famous finches. plants, birds, geography and Ecuadorian history. The 12-kilometer return trip to Nariz del Diablo is undoubtedly one of the most popular and includes a fantastic sightseeing trip aboard a train that zigzags through a number of switchbacks as it climbs the near vertical sides of the mountain to the viewing station at its top. Eduardo (Eddie) was able to maneuver around political protests to alter our planned mangrove ecosystem visit to a safer. Ecuador holidays and festivals, like many places in Latin America, fuse indigenous traditions with Catholic religion, resulting in unique and colorful celebrations. The three-day festival is Cuenca’s biggest celebration, attracting artisans and visitors from all over Ecuador and neighboring countries. Another popular area, particularly among younger travelers and surfers, is Montañita in the south coastal region of the country (for families, head a little further south to the quieter beaches of the fishing village of Ayangue). Other highlights include the splendid Guayaquil Metropolitan Cathedral and Museo Antropológico y de Arte Contemporaneo with its fascinating displays and collections focusing on the country's rich culture and history. Long before the Spanish conquered Ecuador and even before the rise of Incan civilization, the diverse native cultures of the region had rich musical traditions. One of the newest cathedrals in Ecuador, the Catedral Nueva or ‘The New Cathedral’ is an iconic religious symbol representative of the capital city of the Azuay Province. Music played an important role in the ancient Andean peoples lives and archaeologists have found some very old instruments, such as, drums, flutes, trumpets and other musical artifacts, in ancient tombs. 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