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Altitude: 2,980 meters (9,780 ft)
Population: 86,498
Phone Code: 06

The city of San Sebastian de Tulcán is a drab border city, which you are most likely to use only as a crossing point into Colombia. Because natural disasters destroyed most colonial architecture, it is composed mainly of featureless modern buildings, and the sole interesting attraction of the city is its topiary garden. A regional culture museum is due to open in the former customs building on the Rumichaca bridge in the summer of 2009.

The border into Colombia is best crossed during daytime, so if you need to stay overnight in Tulcán, there are plenty of hotels to choose from. The very cheap options tend to be a bit dreary, but if you can’t afford the better places like Sara Espindola or Machado, the Unicornio and the España are clean and reasonably-priced alternatives. Eating options are limited to chifas and cheap chicken places, but a few Colombian restaurants offer variety, unless you prefer to sit down at a market stall.

Nonetheless, the rolling pasture land around the city is pretty and worth taking a small detour through if you have the time, for example to visit the Aguas Hediondas hot springs.


Other places nearby Tulcán: Cotacachi-Cayapas Ecological Reserve, Mascarilla, Cotacachi, Cotacachi-Cayapas Ecological Reserve, Lago San Pablo, Tumbabiro, Peguche, San Antonio De Ibarra, Oyacachi and La Esperanza .

By Andrea Davoust
After more than two years of working and living out of a suitcase in Eastern Europe and in various improbable African countries that no-one has ever...
15 Apr 2013

Hotels in Tulcán

Hotel San Francisco

130114If you are looking for the cheapest place possible, the Hotel San Francisco is your last half-decent option before you fall into the category of downright dingy places. The 11 simple, double and ...
Tulcán, Ecuador

Hotel Sara Espindola

From the flashy neon lights outside and the entrance tucked in a narrow doorway, you would never guess this is the most chic hotel in town. Yet once you climb the tiled staircase into the reception ...
Tulcán, Ecuador

Hotel Machado

One block from the main square and all the money changers, on one of the main arteries of Tulcán, Hotel Machado is one of the decent, if pricy, options in town. The 12 rooms, some doubles and some ...
Tulcán, Ecuador
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