Ecuador | Ecuador - Destination for Cacao and Culinary Enthusiasts | Ecuador - Place of High Biodiversity

Author: Rashmi.D


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Ecuador is a country that offers something for everyone, as compared to its South American neighbors; it is a small country straddling the equator on South America’s west coast. Its diverse landscape and the excellent tourism infrastructure greet visitors with three breathtaking regions of natural landscapes, encompassing verdant jungles, glorious beaches and the Andes. Above an elevation of the Andean foothills, at 2,850 m, Quito, the capital, is known for its intact Spanish colonial center, with decorated 16th – 17th century palaces and religious sites, such as ornate Campania de Jesus Church.

In Ecuador, nature lover should feel in paradise as it’s a place of high biodiversity; Cuyabeno Wild Life Reserve is the best place to see the amazon Rainforest, even though there are other interesting national parks, such as the Yasuni National Park. Discover the indigenous communities of Ecuador and to eventually meet a local shaman is a good way to explore the place. Ecuador’s biodiversity has attracted visitors for centuries, including the esteemed naturalist Charles Darwin. Here are the top tourist attractions in Ecuador not to be missed.

Guayaquil is the largest city with 2.7 million people, founded in 1538 by the Spanish conquistador Francisco de Orellana. It is located on the banks of the Guayas River that leads to the Pacific Ocean and the Galapagos Islands. The Parque Historico Guayaqui offers colonial buildings, lush gardens and animals native to the country; Las Penas is an old neighborhood full of colorful houses and great views of the city.  Boardwalk along the river, stairs lined with cafés and art galleries leads to Santa Ana Hill.

Mindo provides a variety of outdoor activities ranging from bird-watching and rafting to mountain biking, hiking and horse riding. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations; here you can see farmlands, cloud forests, hundreds of streams and three major rivers. El Quetzal is the ultimate destination for cacao and culinary enthusiasts. If you prefer less strenuous activities so enjoy learning chocolate from the cocoa bean to the finished product at El Quetzal del Mindo, a chocolatier.

La Compania, the church of the Society of Jesus, is located in the heart of Quito, is the best known Cathedrals. The church design is a premier example of Baroque architecture in the New World and it is built in the early 1600s.

Salinas is the most popular beach resort city. Because of the high-rise condominiums it is known as little Miami. It is a beach where turtles lay their eggs so you must need to take permission prior to enter here. December and early January are the best month to enjoy Salinas

You will enjoy the Quilotoa Loop, if you love trekking through the remote area, hiking can take four days, and a trail takes you through several of Ecuador’s remote Andean villages. If you take a bus in between points, hiking can be done in less time.

Riobamba, is near to Ecuador’s highest mountain Chimborazo that stands 6,268 meters or 20,564 feet, above the sea level. In order to watch the sun rise, it is popular with hikers who often begin the trek at 1 a.m. It is the starting point for the spectacular train ride to Nariz del Diablo (Devil’s Nose) that passes through both mountains and cloud forests.

Baños is one of the most popular places to visit in Ecuador. It lies at the foot of the active volcano Tungurahua, which is named after the hot springs fed by the thermal waters of the volcano. It is a favorite departure point for jungle tours and known as the “Gateway to the Amazon”. Waterfalls cascading thousands of feet down deep river gorges is the most impressive and attract sightseers as well.

Visitors find large cities offering luxurious amenities as well small native villages known for their colorful markets and other tourist’s attractions such as Cotopaxi, Nariz del Diablo, Cuyabeno Wildlife Reserve, Tena, Montanita, Catedral Nueva, Cuenca, Otavalo Market and many others. You will also get very inexpensive hotel accommodations, great food and friendly people. So make sure to buy your last minute flights to Ecuador.

 


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