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Where is Quito, Ecuador?
Halfway between the Pacific and the Atlantic Ocean lies the beautiful and captivating city of Quito, Ecuador. Known for its majestic churches, rich culture, and dramatic mountain scenery, Quito is a destination that should be on everyone’s bucket list.
With its vibrant colonial core, Quito is the second-oldest capital city in the Americas and the first UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s home to some of the best preserved colonial architecture in South America, including the impressive La Compañía Church, the Palace of the Archbishopric, and the San Francisco Church. With breathtaking views of the Andes Mountains and the unique wildlife of the region, Quito is truly a sight to behold.
For those looking to explore Quito in only two days, there’s no shortage of activities. There is an abundance of activities available, from strolling through the historical center on a guided tour and immersing oneself in the distinct culture, to soaring above the city with a bird’s-eye view on the TelefériQo cable car ride. A 48-hour guide to Quito, Ecuador allows visitors to experience the city’s beauty and culture without having to miss out on the experiences that make it so special.
The weather in Quito, Ecuador is mild, but temperatures can drop quickly at night. This is due to the city’s high altitude, which ranges from 9,250 to 11,500 feet above sea level. As a result, visitors should wear warm clothing, as temperatures can easily drop to the mid-40s.
The unique cultural heritage of Quito, Ecuador is both fascinating and awe-inspiring. You can visit the Golden Church of Quito, a stunning piece of architecture that stands on the corner of Calle de la Compañía and Plaza de San Francisco. Afterward, you can take a cooking class with a local family and learn to make some of the traditional dishes of Ecuador. Beyond the city center, Quito’s surroundings offer plenty of scenic beauty. You can also take the TelefériQo cable car ride for a breathtaking view of the city.
Lastly, a visit to the Mitad del Mundo Monument is a must. This monument marks the exact location of the equator, offering visitors a unique experience of being in two hemispheres at once.
Quito is a safe city to visit, but you should always exercise caution, as you would in any urban setting. Be sure to use common sense and stay in well-lit areas at night, and never leave your belongings unattended.
So, if you’re looking to explore Quito in only two days, read on for a 48-hour guide to Quito, Ecuador. You’ll find tips on what to do, how to prepare, and where to stay for a memorable and hassle-free trip.
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Quito is a city that experiences a subtropical highland climate with warm days and cool nights. The temperatures in the city usually stay between 12°C and 21°C (54°F to 70°F). The weather in Quito, Ecuador is ideal for outdoor activities and exploring the many attractions. During the day, you’ll want to wear light clothing, but be sure to bring along a jacket or sweater for the cooler evenings. The months of December, January, and February are the driest months, while April, May, and November are the wettest. All in all, Quito’s weather remains pleasant year-round.
Altitude in Quito
Quito, Ecuador is the second-highest capital city in the world, coming in at 2,850 meters (9,350 feet) above sea level. This high altitude is one of the main features that makes Quito so special and worth exploring.
Situated in the beautiful Andean Valley, the city enjoys incredible views of snow-capped volcanoes, towering mountains, and lush valleys. Quito is the ideal location for adventure seekers looking to experience high-altitude activities such as mountain climbing, paragliding, and trekking.
The most impressive feature of Quito’s altitude is that the city is actually divided into two distinct parts. The lower part of the city, known as La Mariscal, is at 2,500 meters (8,200 feet). This is the area that many tourists flock to and where many of the city’s museums, restaurants, and bars are located.
However, the higher part of the city, known as El Centro or the Old Town, is at an altitude of 2,850 meters (9,350 feet). This is where you will find the iconic Basilica del Voto Nacional, the Plaza de la Independencia, and the Mitad del Mundo monument.
The high altitude of Quito, Ecuador makes it a great place to experience the sensation of thin air. With reduced oxygen levels, it can be difficult to breathe at first. For this reason, it is recommended that visitors acclimate to the altitude before embarking on any strenuous activities.
Additionally, the high altitude of Quito has a noticeable effect on the temperature. During the day, temperatures can range from pleasant to hot in the sun, while at night it can get quite chilly. It is important to be prepared with layers of clothing to stay warm and comfortable.
Visitors to Quito, Ecuador should also be aware of the altitude-related risks associated with traveling to such a high-altitude city. Altitude sickness can occur from rapid ascent and it is important to drink plenty of fluids, rest, and take it easy for the first few days to help avoid any health issues.
The high altitude of Quito, Ecuador makes it an ideal destination for adventure seekers looking for a unique and memorable experience. From gorgeous views of the Andes to the thin air and varying temperatures, Quito offers something for everyone. But, it is important to be aware of the risks associated with high altitude and acclimate appropriately before embarking on any high-altitude activities.
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PRIVATE QUITO TOURS
Rebecca Adventure Travel
If you are looking for a well-rounded experience of Ecuador, consider a 12-day Ecuador and Galapagos Wellness Tour from Rebecca Adventure Travel. This tour introduces travelers to the natural beauty of Ecuador, its culture, and cuisine. From visiting ancient Incan ruins and taking a seemingly endless cable car ride over the Andes mountains to exploring the Galápagos Islands, your senses will be delighted with each experience.
You’ll also have the opportunity to learn traditional cooking methods from locals and take yoga and meditation classes to help you relax and decompress. Whether your goal is to explore the world or find your inner peace, the Ecuador and Galapagos Wellness Tour has something for everyone. Rebecca Adventure Travel also offers custom tours if there’s something you have in mind.
Quito Historic Center
Exploring the heart of Ecuador starts with a visit to Quito, the historic capital city located high in the Andes Mountains. With a 48 hour timeline, you can get the best of the city in a short amount of time. The first day can be filled with adventure as you explore Quito’s historical center and experience its vibrant culture.
Begin your day by visiting the historical center, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In the center of the old town stands La Plaza de la Independencia, a large square surrounded by remarkable cathedrals and other colonial buildings. The most notable of these is the Basilica del Voto Nacional, a stunning neo-Gothic cathedral that stands in the middle of the square. Climb to the top of the bell tower for a breathtaking view of the city.
Next, make your way over to El Panecillo, a large hill located in the heart of the city. From the top of El Panecillo, you can enjoy beautiful views of the city and the surrounding lush greenery. If you are feeling adventurous, take the time to visit the Museum of Modern Art, which is located nearby. Here, you can appreciate the unique local art, which is heavily influenced by the city’s rich history.
The Golden Church, or Iglesia de la Compañía de Jesus, is an impressive baroque-style church in the heart of Quito’s historical center. The church stands proudly, covered in gold leaf and gilded accents. Inside, the walls are covered in oil paintings of the Virgin Mary and Jesus. The church is a stunning example of the ornate architecture and religious practices of the area.
Its golden-domed exterior glistens in the sun, making it an unforgettable sight. The church is also home to a gorgeous altar which is made with white marble and adorned with intricate sculptures. The Golden Church is a must-see when visiting Quito and a great way to learn about the culture and history of the city.
At the end of the day, make sure to take in the city’s vibrant nightlife. Quito, Ecuador is known for its incredible cuisine, and there are plenty of restaurants and bars to explore. With its rich culture, stunning architecture, and vibrant atmosphere, Quito is sure to make a lasting impression in your memories.
From there, take a ride on the TelefériQo, the world’s highest cable car. Enjoy the incomparable view of the city from high above as you ascend to over 4,100 meters (13,500 feet). The ride offers breathtaking views of the surrounding volcanoes and valleys.
La Carolina Park
Once you reach the top, take some time to explore the local area. Stop by La Carolina Park to take in lush greenery and a peaceful atmosphere. This park is a great place to take a break from sightseeing and relax with a picnic.
Cooking with a Local Family
For a unique cultural experience, try cooking with a local family in Quito, Ecuador. This is a great way to learn about the local cuisine and get a taste for the culture. Learn how to make Ecuadorian dishes such as ceviche, empanadas, and other traditional dishes.
The family will provide all the ingredients and teach you how to prepare a traditional meal, including dessert. You can also learn about the history of the dishes, as well as the customs and traditions of the Ecuadorian people.
After the meal, you can take a stroll around the neighborhood and learn more about the locals. This is a great way to get an authentic experience of Quito, Ecuador.
Editor’s note: It was quite an unexpected surprise to be able to visit and dine with a real local family. Our guide drove us to the top of the mountain in Quito and we were warmly met by the family in their home. It was the first time they had hosted someone, so they were quite nervous.
Quickly, the kids got together and despite the language barrier found a way to talk about art drawings while the adults bonded over cooking and laughter, like it always happens when families cook together. It was amazing to see the unique cooking techniques they used in their preparations and the ingredients they pulled from their garden.
Soon enough, the kids were called to help with dessert, a local dish called Quimbolito, a sponge cake type of dessert cooked in palm leaves.
After a day full of experiences and excitement, it was really nice to sit down and have a home cooked meal with a local family, which truly made us feel like we were a part of Quito culture.
Middle of the World
No trip to Quito, Ecuador would be complete without a visit to the equator. The Mitad del Mundo Monument is located directly on the equator line and offers visitors an educational and unique experience. Here, visitors can learn about the history of the monument, as well as the science of the equator line.
In addition, guests can experience standing in both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres simultaneously and engage in a captivating experiment to confirm the gravitational force of the Earth. Additionally, visitors can visit the planetarium and even take advantage of the souvenir shops. The Mitad del Mundo Monument is a must-see for anyone traveling to Quito, Ecuador.
Quito Hotels: Where to Stay
When visiting Quito, Ecuador, you want to make sure you stay somewhere that is both comfortable and centrally located. That is why we suggest the Ikala Quito Hotel. This hotel offers modern, spacious rooms with spectacular views of the surrounding mountains. The hotel is located in the city center, so you can easily get around and explore the city. With its convenient location and quality amenities, you can’t go wrong when staying at the Ikala Quito Hotel. Plus, the hotel offers a number of packages and discounts to make your stay even more affordable. Whether you’re traveling for business or pleasure, you won’t regret choosing the Ikala Quito Hotel.
When visiting Quito, Ecuador, a great place to stay is the Ikala Quito Hotel. Located in the heart of the city, this modern hotel offers an array of amenities and services. With its convenient location, guests can get to many of the city’s attractions with ease.
The Ikala Quito Hotel is situated in the upscale area of La Mariscal, where three historic houses have been beautifully combined to create a unique and charming accommodation experience. No matter if your trip is for pleasure, business, or a mix of both, our hotel will serve as your sanctuary right in the heart of the city.
Discover a hidden gem in a residential neighborhood where you can unwind after a day of adventure. Ikala Quito Hotel’s privileged location, spacious and comfortable areas, top-notch facilities, and tailored service create the perfect retreat for you.
The hotel features rooms that are comfortable and well-equipped for all types of travelers. Each room features a flat-screen TV, air conditioning, mini-bar, and free Wi-Fi. For a truly lavish experience, travelers may opt for the Executive Suite, granting them exclusive admission to a high-level social area.
You are going to love the rooftop area of the Ikala Quito Hotel. Not only does it give you the most gorgeous view of the city and the mountains but it’s a perfect place to gather with your friends and family for a glass of wine.
The most unique feature of Ikala Hotel in Quito, that you will not find in other hotels, are themed rooms that make you feel like you’ve been transported to another era. Kids especially love this aspect of the hotel and parents can make a stay at Ikala Quito more of an educational experience in Inca-themed rooms with stone walls or an old Ecuadorian room with antique furniture.
Ikala Quito Hotel also has an on-site restaurant, bars, and a spa. For those who are looking to stay fit while on vacation, the hotel’s gym offers the latest in fitness equipment and amenities.
The hotel also offers various services, including a business center, laundry and dry cleaning, parking, and 24-hour room service. For those looking for a little bit of relaxation, the hotel also features a pool.
The buffet breakfast every morning is delicious and offers fresh fruit, local Ecuadorian specialties, drinks, and desserts. Our favorite part of the day was getting fruit and a cup of coffee and chatting with the local staff.
The hotel’s staff is friendly and helpful. They are always willing to help guests with any questions or requests. Furthermore, the hotel offers an airport transfer service to get guests to and from the airport.
When it comes to exploring Quito, Ecuador, Ikala Quito Hotel is the perfect place to stay. With its convenient location and comfortable rooms, guests are sure to have a pleasant and memorable stay.
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Is Quito Safe
Quito is a safe and vibrant city with a lot to offer visitors. With its rich culture and history, there are plenty of activities to keep you occupied and plenty of things to see and do. The city is very well-policed and there are plenty of tourist attractions that are well-guarded. However, as with any destination, it is important to take precautions when visiting, such as staying in well-lit areas at night, being aware of your surroundings, and avoiding walking alone in unfamiliar areas. Additionally, be sure to research the area you plan to visit and always use official taxis to get around. Quito is a wonderful city and with a few precautionary measures, you can have a safe and enjoyable visit.
Is it safe to take Uber in Quito?
Ensuring safety is crucial, therefore it is advisable to search for the identification number and green sticker situated on the side. Additionally, the device includes a red panic button that can be pressed in case of feeling unsafe. Both Uber and Cabify are regarded as safe, reliable alternatives.
Where are the safest places in Quito?
In addition to being secure areas, the neighborhoods of Historic Center, La Mariscal, and Parque La Carolina in Quito boast a plethora of offerings for tourists to enjoy.
Is the water safe to drink in Quito?
Consuming tap water in Ecuador poses health risks. It is highly recommended to opt for bottled water instead and to be cautious with ice cubes and salads that may have been rinsed with unsanitary water.
Quito as an adventurous destination for families
As you can see, Quito, Ecuador is full of incredible things to explore during your 48-hour stay. From breathtaking views atop El Panecillo, to the Museum of Modern Art, and fun family cooking classes, there’s something for everyone in Quito. The city is brimming with culture, art, and adventure, as well as great restaurants and shopping opportunities, no matter what type of traveler you are.
In just two days, you can explore the historical center, visit the Basilica del Voto Nacional, take in the beauty of the Golden Church, and enjoy the local cuisine. You can also take in the Mitad del Mundo Monument and the La Carolina Park, and enjoy a cooking class with a local family.
While in Quito, make sure you take the time to research the city and its surroundings. Get familiar with the altitude and the weather, and find out what the best way to get around is. It’s also wise to stay in a safe and comfortable place, such as IKALA Quito Hotel.
No matter what you choose to do during your 48-hour stay in Quito, make sure to enjoy the culture and beauty of the city. It’s a great place to experience new things, learn about the country’s history, and enjoy the beauty of Ecuador.
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