Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Destinations in Ecuador

South AmericaEcuadorDestinations in Ecuador

Regions

  • Amazon rainforest
  • Andes Highlands
  • Coastal lowlands
  • Galapagos Islands – Isolated archipelago world-famous for its unique wildlife and Darwin’s evolutionary research.

Cities

  • Quito – Second highest capital in the world, with a well-preserved colonial centre. The weather is generally spring-like and relatively unpredictable throughout the year, and changes quickly.
  • Ambato – The central city of Ecuador. Special celebrations during the carnival season.
  • Baños – An adventure capital of Ecuador at the foot of Tungurahua volcano, an active volcano with small eruptions of ash and lava. There are also many hot springs mineral baths, as the name suggests.
  • Cuenca – The third largest city in Ecuador and listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Guayaquil – Largest city in the country and largest port city.
  • Ibarra – town of 100,000 inhabitants halfway between Quito and the northern border.
  • Loja – The oldest colonial town.
  • Otavalo – Small town one and a half hours north of the capital; famous for its Saturday market with indigenous handicrafts and livestock.

Riobamba – starting point of the famous train ride down the Nariz del Diablo and gateway to Chimborazo, the highest mountain in Ecuador

Other destinations

  • Baeza – gateway to the northern Oriente and up-and-coming mountain town – still has a sleepy small-town atmosphere.
  • Canoa – Small beach town.
  • Esmeraldas – A less visited town in the north of some of Ecuador’s most popular beaches.
  • Guamote – A cosy and authentic Andean village that is nevertheless easy to reach.
  • Guaranda – A small Andean town famous for its Carnaval celebrations.
  • Mindo – Excellent bird watching in a cloud forest setting.
  • Montañita – World famous surfing beach and beach meeting point.
  • Puerto López – Beautiful small town by the sea, access point to Machalilla National Park and Isla de la Plata “poor man’s Galapagos”.
  • Puyo – town in the Amazon rainforest, frequent destination of bicycle tours from Baños.
  • Quilotoa Loop – An Andean itinerary that includes the volcanic crater lake Quilotoa, Zumbahua and Chugchilán. Quintessential Andean landscapes and cultural experiences.
  • Salinas – Beautiful beach and promenade, flooded with Guayaquileños during the holidays.
  • Tena – town in the Amazon rainforest known for some of the best white water rafting and kayaking in Latin America.

Vilcabamba – Popular with expats who live and retire here, and famous for its legendary elderly residents who claim to have some of the longest life spans in the world.

National Parks

  • Yasuni National Park
  • Parque Nacional Cotopaxi
  • Pululahua Geobotanical Reserve
  • Cuyabeno Wild Life Reserve
  • Podocarpus National Park
  • Parque Nacional Cajas
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