- The city is located at 2800m above sea level, plan some time to acclimatate.
- Pick-pocket are common, be careful in crowded places with your phone.
- The historical center is very safe with police at every corners.
We stayed at Casa de las Culturas San Marcos and that was perfect. Basic rooms and facilities but superb location, very friendly staff, super cheap, good breakfast and big room.
🚲 Getting there
Smooth flight from Lima of 2h30 with LATAM.
We stayed two days and two nights but we think three nights is the best.
We couldn’t visit the following due to lack of time, but we highly recommend:
- Vulqano Park: A bit outside the side, little amusement park with a telecabin bringing you to 4000m with a nice with on the city.
- Quito New Town: Economic active center of Quito.
Relax in Quito 🛀
After checking-in, we went for a little walk in the city. The temperature in the summer is very nice, making it a pleasant walk. We found the city super relaxed, with plenty of pedestrian streets packed with cute little houses and bakeries. We took the opportunity to visit all the little squares and took pictures of the beautiful old colonial buildings.
After a nice dinner with some local specialities, we’ve headed to Calle La Ronda where the nightlife happen. Very nice vibes, and it was perfect to grab a drink and listen live music with some locals.
Mitad del Mundo ❎
The next day, we woke up with calm and started to our visit of the Quito’s surroundings. We started by grabbing a Uber up to the must do Mitad del Mundo, where the official equator line pass. It took us around 45 minutes from the city center, and costed us 15$.
Upon arrival, we paid 5$ to get in and started the visit. We were short on time so we went straight in the tower where we could see the line, and took a quick look at the museum with fun science experiments. There’s also plenty of museums to see and the site is nice. We stayed one hour in total but 2 or 3 would have been better. We also found plenty of small restaurants on the site.
To get back to the city, there’s a shuttle to the historic center for 15$/person every hour, but we’ve opted for a Uber for 13$.
Basilica del Voto National ⛪️
We arrived at the Basilica after 40 minutes of Uber. Be careful that the site close at 5PM. We started by visiting the bottom area for 2$ at the main entrance. Few pictures later, we went to the entrance of the tower, where we had to pay other 2$ to get in. From the tower, you can see the inside of the church, so no need really to visit the bottom except if that’s your thing.
The tower visit was super fun and adventurous. We started by climbing at the second floor where we saw a beautiful huge circle window. We then climbed to one of the tower, up to the clock, to admire a wonderful view on Quito. We then walked on the roof within the church, to go to the opposite tower. Be mindful it’s pretty high and aerial, so avoid if you have vertigo.
That was one of the prettiest church we ever saw, and that’s a must-do in Quito. There’s also a coffee and a restaurant in one of the tower if you wanna hangout.
The panecillo virgin 🗽
After checking out the church, we stopped a taxi in the street and headed to the Virgin Statue for 5$. Once arrived for the sunset, we enjoyed the view and took a closer look at the monument, built by a french dude back in the time.
It’s the ideal place to hangout and watch the sunset with a beer and few locals around. Be mindful to avoid getting there by the stairs, specially at night since the path can be dodgy. We then took a cab back to the city, and wondered a bit in the city before heading for lunch and a good night of sleep.
- En-Dulce: Tiny cheap bakery offering good sandwiches and humita.
- La Purisima: Excellent locro soup and seafood, try the seabass with oignons.
Read Next ⏭️
Our 2 days stay in Cotopaxi National Park, or go back to the main Ecuador post.