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(Altitude: 2,668 m / 8,698 ft, Population: 25,000, City Code: 03)


Guaranda is best known for its massive pre-Lenten Carnaval, celebrated with parades, parties and water throwing on the streets for about five days before Ash Wednesday. If you want to see the ultimate Ecuadorian Carnaval party, Guaranda is the place to go.


During the rest of the year, Guaranda is a pretty sleepy town that sees very few tourists. It is a good place to go if you want to see a more authentic view of what a typical life in Ecuador consists of. Be aware though, that you will be an outsider in town – Guaranda sees few foreigners throughout the year.


Guaranda is nicknamed “La Ciudad de las Siete Colinas,” for the seven hills it is built upon. It was founded by the Spanish in 1571, with its first settlers being Jews fleeing from the Inquisition in Lima. The name may have come from the guarango tree, or the indigenous nation, the Guaranga, that lived in the area, or for a chief named Guaranga. Today, this largely Quichua town is the capital of Bolívar Province.


Guaranda is a good jumping off point for the village of Salinas. On the road to Ambato is the entry point for Reserva de Producción Faunística Chimborazo, home to Ecuador’s highest volcano, which backdrops Guaranda.


Other places nearby Guaranda: Tigua, Chugchilán, Saquisilí, Riobamba, Ambato, Alausí, Chillanes, Isinliví, Río Verde and Salinas de Bolívar.

10 Oct 2012

Top Hotels in Guaranda

Hostal de las Flores

Hostal de las Flores offers travelers a friendly comfortable stay in Guaranda. It is housed in a renovated old building, which includes a quaint, interior courtyard with tables and seating areas, ...
Guaranda, Ecuador

Hotel BolĂ­var

Hotel BolĂ­var, located two blocks from Parque SimĂłn BolĂ­var, is a good choice for solo travelers, couples and families. It offers three floors of clean, quiet rooms around a nice courtyard. Each ...
Guaranda, Ecuador
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