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Historic Quito Tour

Risking pure sensory overload, begin this half-day tour of Quito’s exquisite historic district. Wandering along the cobblestone streets of this UNESCO-declared “World Heritage Site,” you’ll find Quito’s colonial center packed with artistic and architectural treasures. Internationally considered “the best-preserved, least altered historic center in Latin America,” you should be prepared to discover picturesque colonial-era plazas, 17th-century churches, age-old monasteries, and beautifully restored mansions.

These experiences include majestic churches, monasteries and cathedrals – guardians of a stunning artistic and cultural heritage. Within these sanctuaries, you’ll find altars, pulpits, pillars, and arches adorned head-to-toe in gold leaf, allowing these elements to shine like jewels.

Specifically, the visit starts at the Basilica del Voto Nacional, one of the largest churches in Ecuador and one of the most important works of Ecuadorian neo-gothic architecture. While the exterior of the building stands out for its stone carvings that represent plants and animals of the country, the interior consists of 24 chapels. Beneath the structure are crypts in which lie the remains of several former presidents of the Republic, and on top of the 100-meter-tall church is a beautiful gazebo that serves as a small cafe.

Continuing on to the always-vibrant Plaza Grande (“Independence Square”), you’ll find this site surrounded by the City Cathedral, the Presidential Palace, the Municipal Building and the Archbishop’s Palace. Nearby, we’ll also visit the intricately detailed church of the “Compañia de Jesus” to find its spectacular interior inlaid in gold.

Next, we’ll walk to the San Francisco Church, one of the principal religious monuments of the New World, with its impressive facade and atrium and its Baroque Moorish-influenced interior with the winged “Virgin of Quito” on its main altar.

In addition to magnificent churches, monuments and museums, you’ll also get a feel for authentic day-to-day Quito life, catching glimpses of indigenous locals in their traditional Inca-influenced outfits and fedoras, each immersed in the hustle and bustle of everyday living.

Your “Historic Quito Tour” will end with a birds-eye view of the city from the panoramic “Virgin of Quito” monument atop Panecillo Hill, which overlooks the capital. This will give you a chance to appreciate Quito from above, and – if the weather permits – to catch a view of the spectacular “Volcano Avenue,” two parallel mountain ranges containing eight of the country’s ten highest peaks.

Reviews

“I found Surtrek online as it proved to be an excellent, efficient company. Our 4 days in the Galapagos were expertly planned and we were never left without a guide - we were even walked to dinner each night and assisted with ordering!”Marian Lowenfish

Highlights

Old Town Quito, World Heritage Site, Cathedral, Plaza Grande, La Compañia church, San Francisco church and Panecillo hill.

Itinerary at a Glance

Day 1: Historic Quito Tour
South America Map

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1
Historic Quito Tour

Pick-up time: 08:30

Days Operation: Daily

Visit:

The Basilica del Voto Nacional Plaza Grande (“Independence Square”) Cathedral The Presidential Palace The Municipal Building The Archbishop’s Palace The church of the “Compañia de Jesus” San Francisco Church
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Prices

2019 - Price per person
Days Price per person
2 - 3 Persons
1US$ 152.00 PP
*Price per person based upon double occupancy.
*PP (per person)
Included in the price:
  • Private transportation
  • Services of a professional bilingual guide
  • Entrance fees
Not included in the price:
  • Personal items and expenses
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Drinks
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