Quito – a very interesting place in the middle of the Andes. Here are eight reasons why Quito is definitely worth a visit:
- Highest capital in the world
Despite of many people’s believes, Ecuador’s capital Quito is the highest capital. Located 2,850 meters above sea level it is slightly higher than Bolivia’s official capital Sucre (2,810 m.a.s.l.) – and not La Paz.
- Jump from the northern to the southern hemisphere
The middle of the earth, or mitad del mundo, is the place where the two hemispheres meet. It’s located a 1-hour bus ride outside the center of Quito. Even though the equator crosses several countries only Ecuador claims to be the middle of the earth. This is because it is the highest point on the equator and closest to heaven.
- It’s possible to experience all seasons in one day
Due to its location at the equator, predicting weather in Ecuador is almost impossible. One minute it is 20 degrees with sunshine and 15 minutes later there might be heavy rain (or sometimes even hale – rare though). Weather changes very quickly and you should always bring outfit for different seasons when making a one-day trip.
- Beautiful hiking possibilities
As learned before Quito is located in the middle of the Andes and therefore is surrounded by numerous mountains and volcanoes and great hiking possibilities. The closest Volcano, which is next to the city, is Pichincha (4690 meters above sea level). The first few hundred meters can be left behind by cable cars.
- Super interesting history
Did you know that Ecuador’s currency is the US Dollar? Did you know that former president Jamil Mahuad had to flee from the presidential palace?
The 90’s have been a very unstable era with no less than 6 presidents and a lot of (peaceful) demonstrations. Some of the presidents were only in charge for a few month. Since the early 2000 the country has become much more stable and is now one of the most developed country in South America.
- Weekly possibility to wave to the president
Almost impossible in any other country, in Quito you can see and wave to the president. Every beginning of the week on Monday morning at 11am the Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa and some of his ministers walk out on the balcony of the presidential residence on Plaza Independencia in front of tourists as well as locals. It’s for free but you should get there like one hour before 11 because there are usually a few hundred people attending
- Great nightlife
Quito not only offers a lot of culture but also great nightlife. In La Mariscal or Plaza Foch you’ll meet a lot of tourists but also local people who go out to party. If you wanna go to a place with less tourists but more locals go to La Ronda and dance the night away.
- Beautiful old town
Strolling through one of the best preserved old towns in the Americas, enjoying the view of different sites and churches, and having a local snack – priceless.
Also check out Useful information about Quito – a tourist guide for more information about Ecuador’s capital.
Moreover, find out which is my favorite city in South America and get a guide to it here.