Ecuador Travel Galapagos
Ecuador is located between Colombia and Peru, on the Pacific side of South America. The capital of the country, Quito, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a fun and interesting city. The Galapagos Islands are the main attraction of the country, with most people just jumping from Quito to the islands to indulge in the incredible wildlife viewing opportunities. But there is much more to Ecuador than the Galapagos. Adventure lovers will be eager to explore the Ecuadorian Amazon or climb one of the country's many volcanoes, including the world-famous Cotopaxi Mountain. This small country has a lot of strength and this travel guide can help you make the most of your trip.
You do not necessarily need two years and iron legs to take a good look at the Andes. All you need is a sense of adventure, a little training and a plane ticket to Quito, Ecuador, to mark the journey of the Condor, a five-day route between the Ecuadorian city of Papallacta and the Cotopaxi National Park. , 14,000 foot passes, different types of deer we had seen before.
It was incredible, "says Treinish, who traveled the route on his journey across the Andes." There are volcanic ash everywhere, and we were walking on peaks that towered over 16,000 feet. "
The journey is open to anyone with training - or, perhaps a better word, it is courage - to walk more than 10,000 feet for several days. The landscape is hard, marked by rain, fog and wind, but its savagery is a large part of what makes it so undeniably striking. While trekking on the moor, altitude fields, trekkers find villagers grazing their animals as their ancestors for centuries, ponds dotted with birds, a glacier and the peaks of some of the most active volcanoes in South America.
Ecuador is a country with vast natural and cultural wealth. The diversity of its four regions has resulted in hundreds of thousands of species of flora and fauna. It has about 1640 species of birds. The species of butterflies line the 4,500, the 345 reptiles, 358 amphibians and 258 mammals, among others. Ecuador is considered one of the 17 countries where the greatest biodiversity on the planet is concentrated. Most of its flora and fauna live in 26 protected areas. It also offers historical attractions such as Quito, food and a variety of cultures and traditions.
Ecuador is crossed from north to south by a volcanic section of the Andes 70 volcanoes, the highest being the Chimborazo, with 6310 m West of the Andes is the Gulf of Guayaquil and a wooded plain; to the east, the Amazon. It is the country with the highest concentration of rivers per square kilometer of the world. In Ecuadorian territory, which includes the Galapagos Islands, 1000 km west of the coast, lies the greatest biodiversity on the planet.
The Ministry of Information and Tourism was created on August 10, 1992, at the beginning of the government of Sixto Durán Ballén, who imagined tourism as a key activity for the economic and social development of peoples. Compared with the growth of the tourism sector in June 1994, the decision was made to separate information tourism, to be dedicated exclusively to promoting and strengthening this activity.
One of the many endemic fauna of the Galapagos Islands.
The Galapagos Islands (officially the Archipelago of Colón) is an archipelago located in the Pacific Ocean to 972 km of the coast of Ecuador. It consists of 13 large volcanic islands, 6 smaller islands and 107 rocks and islets, distributed around the line of the terrestrial equator. The Galapagos Archipelago is one of the greatest scientific and tourist attractions of Ecuador; undoubtedly, is the best known and famous attraction of the country.
Currently, the number of visitors in Galápagos reaches about 200,000 tourists per year.
Administratively, the islands are a province of Ecuador, whose capital is Puerto Baquerizo Moreno (officially, it is also called the Insular Region of Ecuador). On February 12, 1832, under the presidency of Juan Jose Flores, the Galapagos Islands were annexed to Ecuador. Since February 18, 1973, they constitute a province of this country.
It is estimated that the formation of the first island occurred more than 5 million years ago as a result of tectonic activity. The most recent islands, called Isabela and Fernandina, are still in the process of formation, the most recent volcanic eruption in 2009 has been recorded.
The Galapagos Islands are famous for their numerous endemic species and studies of Charles Darwin that led him to establish his Theory of Evolution by natural selection. They are called touristy, the «Enchanted Islands», because the flora and fauna found are virtually unique and can not be found anywhere else in the world. That is why many people visit them to get to know and enjoy the unique animals and plants
The Galapagos were declared National Park in 1959, protecting 97.5% of the area of the archipelago. The remaining area is occupied by human settlements that already existed at the time of the declaration. Until then, about 1000-2000 people lived on four islands. In 1972, a census found that 3488 people lived in Galapagos, but in 1980 that number dramatically increased to more than 20,000. In 1986,
the sea around the islands was declared a marine reserve. UNESCO included in the Galapagos World Heritage list in 1978 and in December 2001 This declaration was extended to the marine reserve.In 2007 it was included in the list of World Heritage List in Danger due to mass tourism and invasive species. On July 29, 2010, the Galapagos Islands were removed from the list of assets threatened by the UNESCO Heritage Committee. The archipelago has different international figures that were implemented to try to guarantee the conservation of Galapagos; including: World Natural Heritage Reserve, Ramsar Site, Whale Sanctuary, Biosphere Reserve, etc.
The Global Strategy for Nature Conservation identifies Galapagos as a priority biogeographic province for the establishment of protected areas. Nationally the figures of national park and marine reserve, reflect the commitment of the Ecuadorian government to preserve this important legacy for the future generations of Galapaguians, Ecuadorians and humanity in general. Caños de Agua Santa Benos de Agua Santa is famous for being one of the cities that most attracts tourists in Ecuador, is 3 hours south of Quito.
It is strategically located in the center of Ecuador, between the Andes and the Ecuadorian Amazon. It has a wet and humid spring climate throughout the year, with an average temperature of 18 ° C, is at an altitude of 1,820 m on the slopes of Tungurahua volcano. The WWF gave the nominative in Baños "A Gift to the Earth". It is the ideal place to enjoy a variety of activities and attractions.
Situated between the national parks of Sangay and Llangantes, it is also known as "The Gate of El Dorado" and "A little of heaven" also offers many attractions: You can visit the Basilica of the Virgin of Rosario de Agua Santa, you can visit different waterfalls, climb to Tungurahua (taking precautions because it is a volcano in eruptive activity), marshmallows (sweet made of sugar cane), there are varieties of handicrafts made by raft and tagua.Baños de Agua Santa is a suitable place for the practice of various sports adventure like the city: rafting, kayaking, canoeing, climbing, bungee jumping, horseback riding, nature walks, canoeing, mountain biking, etc.
It has 5 municipal spas with mineral and sulfurous waters ranging from cold from 18 ° C to 55 ° C; emerging from the bowels of the Tungurahua volcano. There is a Zona Rosa where more than 30 clubs, bars and nightclubs offer tourists a fun and safe environment.  In this city you can access more than 80 restaurants with varied local and international cuisine.Yasuni National ParkThe Yasuni National Park is a National Park that extends over an area of 9820 square kilometers in the provinces of Pastaza and Orellana between the Napo River and the Curaray River. the Amazon basin about 250 kilometers southeast of Quito. The mainly wild park was designated by UNESCO in 1989 as a Biosphere Reserve and is part of the territory where the village Huaorani is located.
Two factions of Huao, Tagaeri and Taromenane are isolated groups. It is located in areas of the Tiputini, Yasuní, Nashiño, Cononaco and Curaray rivers, tributaries of the Napo River, which in turn flows into the Amazon. The park is horseshoe-shaped and extends from the south of the Napo River and north of the Curaray River, extending the middle basin of the Tivacuno River According to a recent study  the Yasuní National Park and the underlying magnified area are considered the most biodiverse place on the planet for its richness in amphibians, birds, mammals and plants. The region of the Ecuadorian Amazon is rich in oil fields and the oil economy is the pillar on which the economy of Ecuador is realized from the 1970s.
Given this in the year 1998, the government of Jamil Mahuad declared the southern part of the PNY intangible area, to protect isolated peoples and preserve the biosphere reserve away from the oil fields. Since 2007, YNP has made a proposal called ITT Initiative to keep oil underground, applying a type of international economic compensation that could not materialize. Youni is one of the most biodiverse areas of the Earth, studies speak about 150 species (confirmed) and 204 (estimated) mammals and in the flora were identified 2113 species and estimated to exist around 3100.
The term Yasuní, without knowing its linguistic origin, means "sacred land" as interpreted broadly by the communities in the area. Quito The penetrating blue light of a high altitude dawn old city of Quito, dogs chase pickup trucks transporting products to the market. The trucks crash through ragged, stone-lined streets from the slopes of the Pichincha volcano rising above. Shopkeepers raise blinds, waving one another while their goods are placed: sacks of cumin and cinnamon; aluminum pots; oscillating batteries of cowhides; piñatas in unicorn shapes, Minnie Mouse and SpongeBob SquarePants.
Trade slippers occur in these narrow, steep streets. In front of the shops, women with felt hats and wool ponchos wrap carpets on the sidewalks. From these, they offer ears of corn, potatoes and avocados grown in the villages with which they move every day. "Around us, you can hear gossip," says Paola Carrera, the San Roque neighborhood guide. "This is our word for the secrets - the news and the gossip - shared by these suppliers, brought to our capital throughout Ecuador." The mother of Carrera has a store that sells water of life, the water of life.
This intensely sweet tonic is made up of 25 plants, including amaranth flowers that give it its bright pink color, and herbs from as far away as the Amazon rainforest. "I always liked living here, above the store," says Carrera. 'The buildings in the neighborhood are so traditional; they have such character. The people who belong to São Roque have strong ties to it and have always attracted visitors. Like most of the residents passing through the nearby whitewashed church of San Francisco, Carrera makes the sign of the cross as it enters the immense wooden doors of the church; some also play the sculptures of sun gods at their entrance, an action said to give energy.
The cornerstone of the church was laid in 1535, shortly after the Spanish conquistadors arrived from Andalusia. In a pragmatic move to gain local support, the Franciscan monks allowed religious symbols familiar to the indigenous people of Quitu to mingle with the Catholicism of the invading forces.
The conquerors also brought a Moorish architectural style from northern Islamic Africa and saw their wealth reflected in the spectacular gold of the interior; for the people of Quito, gold reflected the eternal power of their sun god. Walking further into the neighborhood, Carrera features some of the artisans who inhabit the shops of San Roque.
Don Gonzalo Gallardo is a specialist in restoring religious effigies: he shows us a plastic boy Jesus burned in a fire in the house, and an undressed Virgin Mary accidentally knocked into a sanctuary in the living room. César Anchala runs Sombrerería Benalcázar, a hat shop founded by his father 65 years ago. It uses the same molds and irons to form the assorted styles of felt hats for sale.
His business is diversified, selling masks to be used at festivals such as the Inti Raymi, whose origins date back to the Incas who arrived in the 15th century. The masks portray slightly terrifying demons, in addition to some Ecuadorian politicians. In the market of San Roque, a line formed outside the tent of Rosa Correa, in spite of the cries coming from within.
A young couple emerges from behind a curtain, their eyes agitated. Like many of Correa's clients, they pay $ 8 a week for treatment to remove stress and influence from the 'evil eye'. Correa is a fourth-generation shaman who practices a technique that involves happily whipping his clients with a succession of plants; Its shelves are filled with sweet peppers, marigolds, rose petals, mint and nettles. Old beliefs continue to be deep and occasionally sting a bit.