EcuadorTravel Guide: Travel tips for foreigners & backpackers, Quito tourist information, Ecuador food average prices, eating on a budget, accommodation in Quito. Find discount hotels, cheap accommodation, vacation deals, holiday packages.
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Ecuador Travel Guide

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Full country name: Republic of Ecuador
Area: 283,561 sq km
Population: 14,79 million (July 2010 est.)
Capital City: Quito
Language: Spanish (official), Amerindian languages (especially Quechua)
Religion: Roman Catholic 95%, other 5%
Government: Unitary presidential republic
Time Zone: UTC/GMT -5
Dialling Code: 593
Electricity: 120-127V 60 Hz 120/240V in some rural areas
Weights & measures: Metric

Money & Costs:
Average yearly salary: USD 7,500

Budget: $1.5-5
Mid-range: $5-17
High: $20+
Budget: $6-20
Mid-range: $20-100
High: $150+

Geography: Ecuador is one of the smaller countries located in South America. It borders Colombia, Peru and the Pacific Ocean, and includes the Galapagos Islands. The terrain of Ecuador is diverse. It encompasses a wide range of natural formations, such as desert in the southern coast, snowcapped peaks of the Andes Mountains and plains of the Amazon River Basin.

Climate: The climate of Ecuador is tropical with severe rainy seasons. Humid subtropical weather is prevalent along the coast, becoming cooler inland at higher elevations. The weather in the Andean highlands is temperate and dry. The average yearly temperature along the coast is about 25 C, whereas the average yearly temperature in the highlands is about 15 C.

Recommended clothing: Spring attire is required for the winter season (June – August) and the highlands. Since it gets quite chilly at night and in the evening a light jacket or a sweater is advisable. A raincoat is recommended throughout the year.

Health: High quality care is available only in the bigger cities (Quito, Guayaquil etc). Medical facilities in urban areas are limited, but there are plenty of pharmacies. The Galapagos Islands have no cardiac or surgical services, therefore serious patients are evacuated to USA. Health insurance is strongly recommended.

Food & Drink: Ecuador has a very diverse cuisine, since the foods vary with agricultural conditions of the altitudes. The mountain regions are popular for their pork, chicken, cuy (guinea pig) and other meat dishes served with cereals, potatoes or rice. Fanesca is a famous Ecuadorian soup made with 12 types of bean (green beans, lupini beans, lima beans, fava beans, etc.) and milk, and is served with codfish. Some of the most popular dishes in the coastal region are: ceviche, pan de almidón, guatita, encebollado and empanadas; in the mountain region: hornado, fritada, humitas, tamales, llapingachos, lomo saltado, churrasco, etc. Aguardiente, the local firewater, is made from fermented sugar cane.Since tap water is not always treater, you should drink bottled mineral water instead. The famous brand drinks, such as Coca-Cola or Pepsi, can be found everywhere in Ecuador. Coffee and herbal tea are widely available.

Public Holidays:
1 Jan New Year's Day
Feb 12 Amazon and Galapagos Day
Feb 27 Civicism and National Unity Day
Varies between Mar 22 & Apr 25 Good Friday
May 1 Labour Day
May 24 Battle of Pichincha
Aug 10 Independence Day
Oct 9 Guayaquil Independence Day
Nov 2 All Souls' Day
Nov 3 Cuenca Independence Day
Dec 25 Christmas Day
Dec 3 New Year's Eve

Disclaimer: The above information is for reference purposes only. The content of this page is not intended to substitute for advice given by the user's own government travel departments or a licensed travel health advisor. The viewer/user of this web page should always contact the user's own government representatives in that area for the most up-to-date information at that time, before making a final decision to travel to that country or destination.

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