Ecuador Facts

Here is a page full of some (hopefully) interesting facts about Ecuador. Enjoy!

1. Quito is the capital of Ecuador

The capital of Ecuador is Quito; a fairly high-altitude city at the foot of the Andes and sprawling at the bottom of a valley, surrounded by mountains. There is a good cable car that takes you to a viewing point with stunning, panoramic images of the city that is a must-see attraction, particularly at sunset.

2. Equatorial Ecuador

Ecuador straddles the equator – meaning that it has parts situated in both the northern and southern hemispheres (one of 13 countries on the equator). This makes for a god tourist attraction at one of the exact spots where the equator travels which is well worth a visit for both the sceptics and those who want another tourist-stamp added to their passport!

3. Bring your dollars

The currency in Ecuador is the US Dollar. This has been the case since 2000 when it was introduced to help usher in a new period of stability and, although it was initially extremely unpopular, it seems to have worked. This is just another good reason to make sure you have some emergency dollars hidden away!

4. Ecuador Hats

Ecuadorians invented the Panama hat. Despite the name, the Panama hat was an Ecuadorian export that was given to the workers building the Panama Canal to keep them cool. It often infuriates the Ecuadorian people that their generous exports seem to have been forgotten so make sure you buy one from Otavalo market.

5. Regional variation

There are 3 main regions within Ecuador – you have the coast, the mountains and the Amazon. The Amazon doesn’t actually run through the country but the rainforests and tributaries for the river make up a large proportion of the country.

6. Ecuadorian biodiversity

The Galapagos Islands are part of Ecuador. These world-famous islands are what helped Charles Darwin develop his ideas around evolution. They are an incredible place to visit and you can also (at the time of writing) meet Lonesome George – the Pinta Island tortoise who is the last remaining survivor of his species. If you manage to stumble across a female Pinta Island Tortoise that can mate with him and keep the species going then you will get a reward of $10,000 from the Darwin Centre...so keep your eyes peeled!

7. Watch out for the sun

Ecuador has the earth’s closest point to the sun. The volcano of Chimborazo is situated almost on the equator and given it’s height as the tallest point in the country, is officially the point on earth with the closest proximity to the sun.

8. Green Ecuador

Nature has constitutional rights in Ecuador. It was the first nation on earth to protect the environment in the national constitution back in 2008 and there have been a number of landmark cases brought through the Ecuadorian courts.