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Here in the pint-sized nation of Ecuador, you can find the most startling contrasts of scenery. Possessing everything an adventurous visitor could wish for, the country is packed with astonishing biodiversity, stunning colonial architecture, Kichwa villages, Amazonian rainforest, and bustling indigenous markets in the breathtaking heights of the Andes.
In fact, this diverse and exotic destination is generally regarded as a “microcosm” of Latin America ... an encapsulation of the South American continent.
Ecuador is a country that’s so diverse — yet compact — you can experience here in days what it would take weeks to approach elsewhere.
Surtrek offers tailor-made trips in Ecuador where you’ll seamlessly move from experience to experience in a manner that optimizes your valuable and limited time.
Here, you can:
From downtown Quito to smack-dab in the middle of nowhere, this vast and multifaceted country translates into paradise for the adventure-seeking traveler. Present are all the usual suspects — kayaking, rafting, mountain biking, rock climbing and ziplining. Nevertheless, your adventure can also be more sedate ...like spotting scarlet macaws or tracking big cats through the Amazon, watching the sun go down on the dusty remnants of an ancient civilization, or joining in a traditional pilgrimage to an Andean summit once believed to be a god.
All of this and so much more awaits you in Ecuador..!
With a total area of 256,370 square kilometers (98,985 square miles), it's about as big as the U.S. state of Colorado and has a population of 14.9 million (est. 2012). The official language is Spanish, but Kichwa and Shuar are also official languages spoken by indigenous peoples. The currency used in Ecuador is the U.S. dollar (U.S.$).
The best time to travel to Ecuador is from June to August. The wettest time in the highlands is between October and November and from February to May. On the Pacific Coast, January through May are the hottest and wettest months; and in the amazon jungle, the rainy season is from March to September.
There are many Ecuador tours to take advantage of this and visitors will need plenty of free time to see it all. A few popular options include humpback whale watching, Galapagos Islands cruises, Galapagos scuba diving, river rafting, mountain biking, amazon river cruises, amazon jungle tours, bird watching tours, trekking, mountain climbing, cultural tours, train trips, day tours, city tours, Honey moon tours, and sitting back and relaxing in natural hot springs.
Quito, Ecuador’s capital, is located just south of the equator. With an altitude of 2,850 meters (9,350 feet), it is the second highest capital city in the world. Known as the "city of eternal spring," its weather is quite comfortable all year round. Quito is the country’s second largest city, the largest being Guayaquil. Quito is known as the political and cultural capital while Guayaquil is the financial capital and the country’s largest port.
For those interested in adventure traveling, Surtrek offers tours throughout Ecuador, including a trip to several of its highest volcanoes, such as the Cotopaxi Volcano (5,897 meters / 19,347 feet) and Chimborazo Volcano (6,310 meters / 20,702 feet). These volcanoes are located close to Quito and offer amazing mountain climbing opportunities that provide a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The city of Baños offers visitors many activities, from relaxing in hot springs to horseback riding, hiking, and mountain climbing. Otavalo, with one of the largest artisan indigenous markets in South America, is a great place to buy traditional blankets, sweaters, belts, artwork, jewelry and other craftwork.
The famous Galapagos Islands are located in the Pacific Ocean 1,000 km (620 miles) from the Ecuadorian mainland. The archipelago consists of thirteen main islands and over 40 islets, all of volcanic origin. The flora and fauna on the islands are amazing and there are endemic species, meaning they do not exist anywhere else in the world. The Galapagos tortoises are incredible, as are the many birds and iguanas there.
The islands are most well known for Charles Darwin and his theory of evolution, which he developed after he visited Galapagos. This unique archipelago can be explored on a Yacht cruise or through land-based tours with hotel stays, both of which will give you opportunities to explore the wildlife and the one-of-a-kind landscape of these astonishing islands.
Centuries ago, the native peoples of Ecuador were mainly farmers who grew potatoes, maize and beans. In the late 15th century, they were conquered by the Incas. Nevertheless, the Incan empire didn't last very long in what is now Ecuador because the Spaniards conquered the territory in 1534. The colonialists enslaved the indigenous peoples and also brought slaves from Africa to work on plantations. Diseases, brought by the Europeans, killed many of the indigenous, as they were not resistant to them.
Ecuador became part of the viceroyalty of Peru and later the viceroyalty of Nueva Granada. After the Battle of Pichincha, on May 24, 1822, Ecuador became independent from Spain and became part of Gran Colombia along with present-day Colombia and Venezuela. After a war with Peru in 1828-1829, Ecuador withdrew from Gran Colombia in 1830. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Ecuador's economy flourished as cacao exports boomed.
In the 1930s Ecuador suffered from the economic depression along with the rest of the world. After a short period of prosperity due to the banana boom, what followed was political instability, quick successions of presidents, and periods of military rule. In 1941 Peru invaded and occupied the south of Ecuador. Subsequently, Ecuador was forced to surrender some of its territory.
In the 1970s Ecuador’s economy prospered, mostly due to oil that was discovered in 1967. However, in the 1980s the price of oil fell dramatically and drove Ecuador into recession again. Between 1995 and 1998 Ecuador and Peru fought an undeclared war over their borders. Ecuador's economic problems and inflation continued to grow in the following years.
In 2000 Ecuador changed its currency from the sucre to the U.S. dollar. In 2006 Rafael Correa was elected president. He introduced many social reforms to the country and in 2008 a new constitution was adopted.
Now the Tourism is a real alternative for Ecuador. We offer Ecuador Tours and Travel from the Andes to the Amazon to the Pacific Coast, the Galapagos Islands, in a short period of time you can travel trough this amazing country and we will make your Ecuador tour an amazing experience.
There's a reason why the Galapagos Islands are on the most savvy travelers' “bucket-lists.” Located just 600 miles off the Ecuadorian coast, this archipelago is one of the world’s greatest natural wonders. Nothing can prepare you for a visit to this exotic masterpiece of Mother Nature.
The Galapagos Islands archipelago is made up of 13 main islands, 6 smaller islands and more than 100 islets and tiny rock formations...
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The word “Amazon” can conjure up fearsome images in even the most intrepid of travelers, but we are here to say that Ecuador is one of most user-friendly places for exploring the last untamed miracle of nature – the Amazon jungle. Access to the jungle is a short 25-minute flight from the capital city of Quito, or a very manageable 4½ hours overland.
Imagine sitting out in the evening as the sun goes down over the forest canopy, while sipping a glass of wine in the open air as the creatures of the forest begin their nightly serenade to the beat of a tropical shower…
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Great emperors, intrepid explorers, colonists and scientists have all been coming to the Ecuadorian Andes for centuries in search of treasures – be these in the form of land, wealth, knowledge or power.
The Incas — whose renowned empire was far larger than that of the Romans, but who never managed to fully dominate the proud, strong inhabitants of this land — established only partial reign that lasted a mere 50 years. The Spanish arrived on the heels of the Incas, finding a great deal of treasure in the Ecuadorian Andes and leaving behind a legacy best seen in the colonial architecture of its capital – Quito...
Because the Andes Mountains cut across the length of Ecuador, the country has several mountains that are ideal for all types of climbing experiences – from acclimatization trails to slopes that are even challenges for experienced mountaineers. As an example, a great adventure tour in Ecuador is climbing the summit of Chimborazo, the highest volcano in the country (20,702 feet). To accomplish this requires significant physical effort and a great deal of knowledge about mountain climbing tecniques. You can also climb Cotopaxi (19,347 feet), Antisana or El Altar, and with all of them you´ll feel privileged for having reached their summits and witnessed the stunning scenery of the surrounding lakes and glaciers.
If you are looking for adventure tours in Ecuador, just let us know and we'll be happy to cooperate with you organizing a once in a lifetime adventure!
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Just over 100 miles west of Ecuador’s capital, the Pacific Ocean beckons. Beyond the fabled Galapagos Islands, visitors to Ecuador’s coast are offered plenty: pristine beaches, prehistoric art, exotic wildlife on islands just offshore, tepid seawater and an abundance of flora and fauna befit the Ecuador pacific coast of this supremely bio-diverse country.
Infrastructure for tourism is rather limited here, therefore the Ecuador pacific coast maintains many of its unspoiled qualities for those willing to rough it a little to discover them. You can still find sleepy seaside communities where life moves at a slower pace...
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From the Galapagos Island to the Andes Mountains, you can watch your love evolve to exciting new heights here in Ecuador. Surtrek Tour Operator is ready to assist you in custom designing your dream honeymoon in this amazingly diverse country.
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