Article

Quito Astronomical Observatory Museum

Quito Astronomical Observatory Museum (Av. Gran Colombia y 10 de Agosto – Parque La Alameda, Quito) – founded in 1873, this museum is a major attraction for students, scientists and tourists – providing a vivid history of the various scientific instruments that were used by early astronomers and scientists. The Observatory’s main attraction is the […]

Article

Plaza de San Sebastian

Plaza de San Sebastian (Calle Mariscal Sucre y Talbot, Parque Miguel León, Cuenca) – located in the westernmost part of Cuenca, this plaza is located by a 19th century church of the same name. This plaza (the largest in Cuenca) was used to hold bullfights back in the 18th century. Nowadays, it’s a popular geographic […]

Article

Plaza & Monastery of San Francisco

Plaza & Monastery of San Francisco (Calle Cuenca e/Sucre, Quito) – this is one of the oldest Spanish colonial era structures in Quito (the monastery was founded by Franciscan missionary Joedco Ricke). It’s surprising to hear that this plaza was built over an Inca temple. The monastery is worth a visit and here you will […]

Article

Palacio del Gobierno

Palacio del Gobierno (Calle Garcia Moreno, Quito) – this is the country’s presidencial palace (a.k.a. Palacio de Carondelet). Originally built in 1650 (when it was the seat of the Spanish colonial government), it was burnt down in 1920, and was rebuilt quickly thereafter. Visitors are only allowed to enter parts of the building that are […]

Article

Museo del Banco Central Pumapungo

Museo del Banco Central Pumapungo (Calle Larga e/Arriaga y Huayna Capac, Cuenca) – along with a wing that displays more contemporary artworks at this museum’s street level, its upper level features a variety of ítems that reveal the country’s diverse cultures – from indigenous (Indian) to Afro-Ecuadorian (showing the little-known blacks from Esmeraldas province, who […]

Article

Museo de las Culturas Aborígenes

Museo de las Culturas Aborígenes (Calle Larga 5-24, e/Hno. Miguel y Mariano Cueva, Cuenca) – this museum, located in provincial town of Cuenca, has over 5,000 archeological pieces from over 20 pre-Columbian Ecuadorian cultures (made of clay, bone, shells, stones, and wood) that go back some 15,000 years. Along with the exhibit areas, there’s a […]

Article

La Merced

La Merced (Calles Chile y Cuenca, Quito) – this 18th century church is known for its fascinating artwork (including paintings showing volcanoes erupting over colonial-era Quito). This is also another renowned church that went through periods of damage and restorations as a result of earthquakes that it weathered (in particular in 1660). A closer look […]

Article

El Panecillo

El Panecillo (Quito) – located south of the city, this 200-meter high volcanic hill overlooking Quito’s Old Town has a statue of the Virgin Mary at it summit (which is reminiscent of the Christ the Redeemer statue at Rio de Janeiro, Brazil). The Virgin Mary statue is 45 meters tall and is made of over […]

Article

Basílica del Voto Nacional

Basílica del Voto Nacional (Carchi 122, Quito) – this double-spired Gothic cathedral (built in 1920) is located in the historic center of Quito, and is said to be the largest such structure in the Western Hemisphere. Modeled on Paris’ Notre-Dame, the gargoyles used here are actually wildlife found in Ecuador: pumas, monkeys, penguins, tortoises, and […]

Article

About Ecuador

Ecuador, located in a northwest region of South America, has a rich history that goes back to pre-Columbian times, when much of that country was part of the Inca Empire. All that changed when Spanish conquistadores (led by explorer Francisco Pizarro) invaded Ecuador in 1531. During the early part of Spanish colonial rule, Ecuador was […]