Ecuador
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Ecuador

Ecuador might be the smallest of the Andean countries, but size is a hardly a factor in light of what it contains. The entire country covers the Northern Coast, Southern Coast, Andean Highlands and the Amazon Basin - all packed into its small surface area; and not to mention the Galapagos Islands sitting right off its coast. The nation in many ways boasts a little bit of everything that South America has to offer, and Ecuador's relatively small size and wide diversity are ultimately its most enticing qualities.

Get stoked, and plunge right into the sparkling blue waters of the Galapagos Islands where playful sea lions swim through your legs and hammerhead sharks slither by without even a glance in your direction,

Relax, and sip a cappuccino in the capital's historic colonial center while taking in the beauty of Spanish cathedrals built over the ruins of the Inca Empire - all of which is set against the majestic backdrop of the Andes.

Awe yourself, and pull up to a remote jungle lodge in a dugout canoe - carved out using the same techniques that Amazon tribes have used for thousands of years - and allow yourself to be lulled to sleep by the sounds of toucans, parrots and howler monkeys that inhabit the dense forest surrounding you.

Hard to believe, but it's all possible here in Ecuador.

So much that, in recent years, Ecuador has become a hotspot for expat's and retirees from all over the world to come to and establish new roots in. The country itself is still a place that's incredibly cheap to reside in, and you'll find that an abundance of affordable travel services - along with luxury travel options - are readily available. However, perhaps due to its lack of superlatives (it doesn’t have the staggering Andean peaks of Peru, Brazil’s vast expanses of jungle or the clear Caribbean beaches of Colombia and Venezuela), the country still remains largely undiscovered and there are still plenty of opportunities for remote adventure travel. Some of the most popular activities in Ecuador are birdwatching, mountain biking, kayaking and hiking.

Other travelers come to volunteer, often as language teachers; either to help with re-forestation (the rainforest is being stripped at an alarming rate) or to work with one of the many NGOs operating in Ecuador. Many also choose to spend a few weeks studying Spanish in Quito, currently the biggest language-learning center in South America.

But whatever it is you're in search of throughout Latin America, this might very well be the place to find it.







23 Apr 2013

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Ecuador Highlights

Cotopaxi National Park

101264An hour and a half south of Quito, along the Avenue of the Volcanoes, is the dominant image on the Ecuadorian national psyche: the perfectly conical Cotopaxi volcano (altitude 5,897 m / 19,350 ft), ...
City
Cotopaxi National Park, Ecuador

The Galápagos Islands

101246In the two-hour flight across the thousand kilometers of Pacific Ocean from the Ecuadorian mainland to the Galápagos archipelago, visitors can expect to be transported to an environment reminiscent ...
Region, Diving
Ecuador

Mindo

102404Altitude: 2,400 meters (7,874 feet)Population: 2,500Phone Code: 02Mindo is set in a breathtaking, massive cloud forest (including 47,444 acres of the nationally protected reserve, Bosque Protector ...
City
Mindo, Ecuador

Quito

101013Travelers worldwide are drawn to Quito for its spectacular mountain setting, its colonial historical center, near-by adventure travel opportunities, international cuisine, and the gentle, generous ...
City
Quito, Ecuador

Top Markets in Ecuador

Otavalo Market

103821 You pick up the sweater with an appraising eye. It might be the right size, it might be a little small, it’s tough to tell unless you try it on. “How much?” the hopeful vendor asks in English: ...
V!va List
Ecuador

SaquisilĂ­ Market

I suppose it’s a little like an Ecuadorian Wal-Mart. I mean, you can get everything you need there. Food. Clothes. Household stuff. There’s a food court. You can buy music and the latest ...
V!va List
Ecuador

Flower Market

Cuenca\'s Flower Market is located on Calle Mariscal Sucre, near Padre Aguirre, in front of the southern side of the Cathedral de la Inmaculada (New Cathedral), and wraps around on Padre Aguirre, ...
Market
Cuenca, Ecuador

Adventure Travel in Ecuador

Ecuador Hiking

102071There are a number of excellent trips through the Andean páramo (grassland) which features spectacular views of Ecuador\'s volcanic peaks. The most popular, longer treks are the Trek de Condor, ...
Hiking, Hiking Info.
Ecuador

Rafting & Kayaking

Ecuador is considered one of the best destinations in the world for whitewater sports due to the steep drop-offs from snow-capped peaks to rich lowland areas connected by one of the highest ...
Kayaking Info., Kayaking, Rafting, Rafting Info.
Ecuador

Ecuador Mountain Climbing

Ecuador offers an incredible diversity of mountains to explore. Within a day\'s drive from Quito are glaciated peaks which rise over 5,000 meters (16,400 ft) and one over 6,000 meters (19,680 feet), ...
Climbing, Climbing Info.
Ecuador

Ecuador Mountain Biking

102067 Ecuador offers the cyclist seemingly endless back roads and trails to explore. The Incas, who were legendary road builders, and their living descendants have been carving scenic paths for ...
Bicycling Info.
Ecuador
Mapa
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