Capital City: Quito

Population: 16,863,425

Other Major Cities: Guayaquil and Cuenca

Main Airports: Quito and Guayaquil

Visa requirements:  Passport holders  of the USA, Canada, Australia and the UK do not need a visa for stays up to 90 days.

Language: Spanish, Quechua, and several other indigenous languages.

Weather: Varies greatly by region.

Currency: The United States Dollar, though actual coins may differ in design the what you’d find in the USA.


  • Train: The railroads in Ecuador serve primarily touristic purposes.
  • Bus: Buses are the best way to travel around the country, which has a comprehensive network.
  • Car: Not recommended, as roads tend to be very windy as you travel through mountainous and jungle regions. Most cars here are manual

Accommodation: Lodging in relatively cheap here and you can find a small hotel for under $50; lodging tends to be more expensive in Cuenca. Hostels are also catching on here. Stays in jungle lodges in the Amazon are also available.

Hotel: When in Quito, stay at Hotel San Francisco de Quito, a beautiful colonial building adorned with hanging plants, a short walk from Plaza San  Francisco, one of the city’s many public squares. Splurge in Cuenca, which is known for its beautiful boutique hotels and bed and breakfasts. Hostels are available in many of the heavily touristed cities and villages for as little as $7 for a dorm bed. A private room in a hostel or small hotel can be had for under $20.

Eating Out: Ecuadorian food differs by region, with mountain cuisine rich in carbohydrates and meats, while its Pacific coastal regions feature fish and seafood. In the larger cities and towns, international food can be found, Chinese restaurants— known in Ecuador as a chifas — and pizza being very popular.

Nightlife: Quito and Cuenca have a large choice of bars and nightclubs, while coast towns like Montañita have open air cafes and bars.