1. Posted by themattyj (Budding Member 4 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

Hi what is there to see in quito? is it worth travelling down the west coast.....

2. Posted by bentivogli (Respected Member 2398 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

I liked Quito; there's not so much to see that's terribly special or spectacular, but it makes a fine introduction to Andean SA. And of course nearby 'mitad del mundo' is quaint... Don't miss the market halls in Quito, if they still as they used to be, it's an interesting cultural experience, and the food there is great. Haven't been to the coast in Ecuador, but several people told me that it's worth going.


[ Edit: Edited at Sep 25, 2006 11:28 PM by bentivogli ]

3. Posted by eshric (Budding Member 15 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

I spent a month in Quito over the past summer and loved it! I was there for four weeks, mon.-thu. I would do volunteer work at an elementary school teaching english, and on the weekends, fri-sun we would travel to different parts of the country. On the first weekend we went to atacames which is about 6 hours by bus from quito, it's best to take a late bus, 23.00 or later. I deffinitely recommend going to atacames, it is a lovely beach town, and what makes it much nicer than montinita or manta is that it is where all the locals go on their holiday, not very many gringos, and great nightlife, nice and relaxing. The second weekend we went to banos, it was about three weeks before they had to evacuate the town due to the volcano, it wasn't very crowded and it was georgous! We did a 5 hour bike ride and saw alot of waterfalls, we also went to the thermal springs. We stayed at a really nice hostal, called Maria Cruz (I think that was what it was called, it is very colorful and it was in our lonely planet book) The third weekend we went to the amazon, if you decide to take any tours go to La MAriscal or sometimes refered to Gringolandia. there are tons of tour agencies, we visited a few and then chose the one we liked best. The trip to the jungle is long and hard but well worth it, I hate spiders and am not very outdoorsy but I was sad to leave, It was just amazing. On the last weekend I went to Otavalo, the indian market about two hours away from quito. I recommend going on a fri afternoon, staying overnight and then visiting the market early sat. morning, prices are better the earlier you go. We also went to Mitad del mundo which was really nice, go on a sunday because its when the locals go and they usually have a live band playing all day long, the environment is really good on sundays. The last day I was in Ecuador Me and my friend went to Mindo, where the cloud forest is, It was really nice, we swam in the waterfalls. The hike was much more rigorous than we were told so it is good to be in good shape, I am not that athletics so it is doable, just hard. Quito is a really great place, If you like to drink and have a good time dancing then La MAriscal is the place to be. There are alot of Salsa clubs and some clubs that play reggaeton and Western hip/hop music, We went to a place called level a few times, another nice place was Huaina, Its pretty mellow until about 23.00. Old town is nice too, there are some museums and good restraunts. I met a guy in atacames my first weekend in Ecuador who lived in quito so during the week he would show me around the city, its really nice to hang out with the locals becasue they are the ones that will show you the real Quito. I recomend trying to make some friends who live in Quito. Overall Quito was nice but you may have a hard time occupying your time there if you are there for a long time. It was nice to have Quito as a home base but we found it a little boring on the weekends.

Best of luck,

4. Posted by ChIqUiTtA (Respected Member 278 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

YES! travel down the west coast!! it is sooo amazing there...
i just got back from backpacking around ecuador for 2 months, and i spent about a month of it just in quito and the coast... Atacames was a personal favourite because it had a great party scene, but Mompiche was also incredible... it was so "undiscovered" and no body really knows about it! (i'm letting you in on a very big secret here!!! this is a gorgeous place)

quito on the other hand is very fun too! if you want the tourist scene, stay in the Mariscal area... (or "gringolandia" as taxi drivers call it). The Magic Bean is a great place to eat breakfast!! And Hostal Centro del Mundo is a nice place to stay... they serve free cuba libre on mon, wed, and fri nights...!! Papaya Net is pretty much the place to meet up for coffee or check your email... and No Bar is fun in the evenings!!

i wish i was back there again... have fun!!

5. Posted by bentivogli (Respected Member 2398 posts) 12y Star this if you like it!

I second that: central del mundo's a good place to stay. Tnx Chiquita, because I forgot the name. I'd also recommend Baños, by the way; despite of the occasional tourist that goes missing there, nature's beautiful. Just don't hike to the bellavista alone; see a recent thread in this forum about organised muggings happening there.