Ecuador Travel Guide

Ecuador is a beautiful country. Not only does it offer an affordable vacation, but there is also plenty to do and see. Adventure junkies will not have to wonder what to do in Ecuador. Hiking and trekking are popular activities especially in the mountainous regions where experienced hikers will enjoy the many trails.
Shopaholics wondering what to do in Ecuador should note that the country is an excellent place to purchase handmade crafts. Panama hats are a popular gift item. Contrary to what their name might suggest, Panama hats originated in Ecuador and not Panama. Many of the country’s local markets sell artisanal crafts that make for great souvenirs.
One of the best things to do in Ecuador is travel to Quito. Since most international flights fly directly into Quito, it is hard to avoid the sprawling city. Quito is home to amazing architecture and vibrant nightlife. The city is located 9,350 feet above sea level, and the city is the second highest capital city in the world. So visitors should be prepared to adjust to breathing the thin air.
Quito is a World Heritage Site. Broken up into three regions, Quito consists of the old town where colonial style builds can be found, the southern district where the upper class of Quito resides and the northern district where many of the city’s industrial sites are located. While visiting Quito, be sure to take a peek into the Cathedral of Quito, this historic church was built in 1562 and is an architectural marvel.

Based in San Francisco, the Geographic Expeditions travel company provides several close-to-nature cruises to the Galápagos Islands. Transportation options include a private charter boat and La Pinta, a 48-person yacht with 10 staterooms and 14 cabins.

A shrine to Ecuador’s most famous artist, Oswaldo Guayasamín.

This small Ecuadorean cruise company is charting a new course for travel to Darwin’s famous islands.

Family-focused, immersive trips range from spotting scarlet-throated frigate birds in the Galápagos to lessons in kite making in China. New trips for 2013 go to Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam.

Between the central Cotopaxi and Tungurahua volcanoes 124 miles south of Quito lies Nevado Roses—the antithesis of your grandmother’s flower garden. More than 3 million rosebushes bloom in tidy rows, wafting their heady fragrance into the air.