Blue-footed boobies, centuries-old sun temples and rumbling stratovolcanoes – although individually unique, these items have one thing in common: you can find them all in Ecuador. From the one-of-a-kind animals of the Andes and the Galápagos to ancient Incan ruins, Ecuador is a true treasure trove for any international traveler seeking to find some of the world’s rarest beauty. Here are five of the best reasons you should visit Ecuador:
ShutterstockGalápagos National Park |
This UNESCO World Heritage Site – protecting more than 95 percent of the Galápagos Islands – is Ecuador’s first national park. Here, you’ll see animals unlike any others in the world, including the giant tortoise, marine iguana and the flightless cormorant.
ShutterstockAndes Mountains |
Home to some of the most exotic animals in the world, the Andes Mountains are also the longest stretching continental mountain range on earth. A visit to the Cotopaxi National Park offers stunning views of the stratovolcano, Cotopaxi.
The Ingapirca is one of Ecuador’s largest and most significant archeological sites. While the ruins’ origins are unknown, many archeologists suggest the temple and buildings were used for protection and worship. Most visitors day trip to Ingapirca from the nearby town of Cuenca.
ShutterstockCiudad Mitad del Mundo Monument |
Do you want to stand at the center of the world? This 90-foot-tall monument dating from the late 1970s is said to mark the spot, although whether it actually sits on the equator has been debated since its construction. Not far from the monument you’ll find the historic district of Quito.
ShutterstockBasílica del Voto Nacional |
The Americas’ largest neo-Gothic basilica, Basílica del Voto Nacional – or Basilica of the National Vow – reaches toward the sky in Ecuador’s capital city, Quito. Armadillos, Galapagos turtles and other Ecuadorian animals cast in stone decorate the elaborate exterior.
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