"Quito - Capital of Ecuador" Top 5 Page for this destination Quito by MalenaN

Quito Travel Guide: 1,075 reviews and 2,921 photos

I spent around ten days in Quito in June and August 2011and I liked it very much, especially the old town Centro Histórico. Centro Histórico is a lovely area with colonial architecture cobbled plazas, churches and many small museums. Some years ago much was renovated in the area and security has increased. It is a lovely part of Quito and this is where I chose to stay. Centro Histórico is a Unesco World Heritage Site. In 2012 I came back to Quito and visited for 14 days in June, July and August.

North of Centro Histórico is the more modern town. One part is La Mariscal where there are many hotels, restaurants, bars and tour operators. This is where many tourists choose to stay, and therefore the area is also called Gringolandia. I’m glad I didn’t stay here. In North Quito you will also find business and residential areas, shopping malls, parks and some nice museums.

Quito is situated at an altitude of 2850 metres, which makes it the second highest capital in the world (only La Paz is situated higher). If you are not acclimatised to high altitude you should take it easy the first days. Quito is beautifully situated in a valley with mountains on its west and east side. This means the city stretches out over 50 km in a north-south direction, but only 8km across. With 1.6 million inhabitants Quito is the second largest city in Ecuador.

Almost at the equator, but at an altitude of 2850m, makes the climate in Quito spring like all year round. It is chilly in the mornings and in the evenings, and daytime temperatures varies between 10-21°C. How warm it gets during the day depends on the clouds and if it rains or not. The dry season is in June - September, with July and August being the warmest months with least rain. The rainy season last from October - May, with most rain in February - April.

A legend says that Quito was founded in honour of the god Quitu, by his son Quitumbe. Long ago the Quitu people lived in the valley where Quito is now situated. They integrated with the Caras from the north coastal zone and formed Shyris nation around A.D. 1300. In 1487 the Inca took over and later the Spanish. The Spanish founded the city of San Francisco de Quito on 6 December 1534.

  • Last visit to Quito: Aug 2011
  • Intro Updated Feb 5, 2014
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Reviews (146)

Comments (19)

  • toonsarah's Profile Photo
    Mar 10, 2014 at 12:19 PM

    Excellent updates since my last visit - so many more interesting sights and great meals! You make me want to return to Quito ;-)

    • MalenaN's Profile Photo
      Mar 10, 2014 at 12:52 PM

      I like Quito very much, and I will go back this year, even though it will probably just be for a few days.

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Aug 2, 2013 at 10:05 AM

    Me again, coming back to look at your latest tips and updates. There aren't many cities where you can see so many snow capped volcanoes on a clear day.

    • MalenaN's Profile Photo
      Aug 3, 2013 at 5:58 PM

      I really like the views from Quito on a clear day! On Wednesday I will return to Quito, because on Friday I fly home, end of holiday!

  • HORSCHECK's Profile Photo
    Jun 21, 2013 at 12:37 PM

    Malena, fantastic and comprehensive page about Quito here. It looks like you almost always had lovely blue sky for your photos. I like your hepful transportation tips, especially the ones about the taxi fares. Also the Ciclopaseo is a great idea.

    • MalenaN's Profile Photo
      Jun 21, 2013 at 11:43 PM

      Thank you Holger! The weather in Quito can be very changeable but most of the time I was lucky, especially during the visit in 2012. I hope I will get the posibility to rent a bike during ciclopaseo for a longer time this year.

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    May 27, 2013 at 12:36 PM

    Malena, you have added dozens of fine new tips since I last looked at this page. I had no idea there were so many museums in Quito. Also I like the colorful celebrations and musicians. And of course the Ciclopaseo, which is a great idea.

    • MalenaN's Profile Photo
      May 27, 2013 at 8:54 PM

      Thank you for visiting Don! Yes, there are lots of museums in Quito, and not all of them are in the guidebooks. I wish I could have cycled the whole ciclopaseo road, but maybe another time.

  • May 3, 2013 at 5:35 AM

    Now that I've booked the tickets it's time to get excited! Haha. So much info here malena, and have already seen some tips that have answered questions in my mind already. Will continue to come here to visit and get info. Thanks! X

    • MalenaN's Profile Photo
      May 3, 2013 at 11:17 AM

      I'm glad that you will get a week in Ecuador later this year, and to see Quito, Cotopaxi and Quilotoa during that week is a good choice. This page is starting to be too big, but anyway it is the page I'm still working on. There are many tips, especially things to do-tips, to add from my latest trip.

  • bharat_tanwar's Profile Photo
    Feb 11, 2013 at 7:43 AM

    your photos & comments abt Quito......made me to must visit it.

    • bharat_tanwar's Profile Photo
      Feb 11, 2013 at 10:30 PM

      right indeed...its beautiful......do you speak Spanish..?

    • MalenaN's Profile Photo
      Feb 12, 2013 at 8:18 AM

      Well, I speak a little. Sometimes I I bought a newspaper to practice. Some of the articles were easy to understand, while others were impossible to understand.

  • hopang's Profile Photo
    Dec 16, 2012 at 1:45 AM

    You certainly have seen a lot of Quito. Interesting to read about your journey to the city and the surrounding area. We certainly hope to visit Quito one day too. ~ho & pang

    • MalenaN's Profile Photo
      Dec 16, 2012 at 1:49 AM

      Thank you ho and pang! I like Quito very much and saw even more this year (which I haven't had time to write about yet).

  • Yaqui's Profile Photo
    Sep 10, 2012 at 9:19 PM

    Such fantastic country and all the structure here have such beautiful character. Love the view from the top of the Teleferigo! Excellent page!

    • MalenaN's Profile Photo
      Sep 10, 2012 at 9:35 PM

      Thank you Dee! It is lovely with the mountains sourrounding Quito.

  • balhannah's Profile Photo
    Sep 7, 2012 at 7:09 PM

    Another excellent page Malena! Love the inside of the Cathedral and the Churches, also the monastery and lookout, sounds like plenty to see and do here! Hope your arm has healed by now, All the best.. DEE

    • MalenaN's Profile Photo
      Sep 7, 2012 at 10:30 PM

      Thank you Dee! I spent quite many days in Quito last year and also during my holiday this year. I like the city very much.
      And for the wrist it only needs a little bit more time and physiotherapy until it will be like before again.

  • toonsarah's Profile Photo
    Sep 7, 2012 at 12:15 PM

    Very helpful transport and restaurant tips - thanks especially for updating on places that had closed on your most recent visit. But tell me - did you break your wrist IN Ecuador?! How horrible for you, wherever it happened

    • MalenaN's Profile Photo
      Sep 7, 2012 at 12:44 PM

      Thank you Sarah! I have done the updates, but the new tips will take some time to write (I will begin with smaller pages). I broke the wrist after only a few days in Ecuador, on the first day at the coast. I had an operation and got two pins in the bone, which I took out a few days before going home.

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