The name Ecuador comes from the French word or Équateur, meaning “The middle of the world”, since the country straddles in the southern and northern hemispheres. It is exactly for this reason that Ecuador is such a biodiverse and strikingly beautiful location.
Due to its location and the geography, the country consists of four regions namely: The Coast, the Highlands, the Ecuadorian Amazon and Galapagos Islands. This diversity host famous landforms, natural attractions as well as cultural manifestations which are must-visit for every traveler.
The beauty of it is that they are all so different that you will get the feeling you’ve been to more that one country, and Ecuador is only 109,484 square miles! Check-out our top visiting spot in Ecuador, a great start when planning your itinerary for your Ecuador trip.
Ecuadorian Sierra: Otavalo Market
Otavalo is a largely indigenous town in the Imbabura Province, northern part of Ecuador. The indigenous Otavaleños are famous for weaving textiles, usually made of wool (that is sometimes as black as a raven), which are sold at the famous Saturday market.
Although the largest market is on Saturday, there is a very wide range of wares available throughout the week in the “Plaza de los Ponchos”, and the many local shops. A full day trip to Otavalo Local Market from Quito is enough to fall in love with the palce.
Ecuadorian Sierra: Quilotoa Loop hike
The Quilotoa loop is made of mostly small, Andean villages which surround the famous Quilotoa Lake.
The scenic beauty of the place is astonishing, specially considering it is actually an old volcanic crater.
This spot is also home to the rich cultural hieritage of the high mountain villages. The famous lagoon offers a great opportunity for hiking and landscape photography, a trurly spectacular views.
It takes 1 full day trip to visit this place.
Form the Coast Lands: Montañita and Canoa Beaches
The original party beach in Ecuador is definitely Montañita Beach, Canoa is more like and the perfect place to enjoy the long weekend.
The relaxed beach surfer vibe in Montañita and the plenty of bars to enjoy the night-life will makes you dance till the dawn. In Canoa you can always take a nap at the colorful tents while enjoying the sound of the waves.
Even thought these both are small towns, the food is awesome, fresh and home-flavored seafood with a glass of beer, who could ask for more?.
Amidst the Sierra and the Coast: Mindo Cloud Forest
The famous and biodiverse small town located deep in the cloud forest of Ecuador is Mindo. A great place to experience zip lining through canopy, or tasting a fresh trout, getting fresh air and hiking to the waterfalls.
It is an incredibly gorgeous place where even the laziest person cannot sit idle – such an interesting place it is! A Full Day trip to Mindo Cloud Forest will work perfectly if your are short in time.
Ecuadorian Highlands: Baños
The Ecuadorian city known as the Amazon gateway is Baños. Most of the visitors tend to stay in this place because it offers an awesome experience when exploring and visiting nature at its purest.
It is located near the Tungurahua volcano and it is surrounded by a green dense forest. The main attraction of this place is the geothermal hot springs. Apart from relaxing and soaking, the visitors can ride horses and go biking in the hillsides or can take up river rafting.
Ecuadorian Jungle: Cuyabeno National Reserve
The Cuyabeno National reserve is a well known spot for everytraveler, also termed as the ecological gem of Amazon. This place houses an incredible amount of fauna and flora.
Around 500 species of birds and 460 species of fishes are recorded including the strangest bird Hoatzin of Amazon forest. Jungle Lodges in Amazon Rainforest are your best and safest option when traveling deep into the jungle.
Ecuadorian Highlands: Cuenca City
Cuenca is another cultural heritage site bursting with the rich history and architecture of colonial style. Before the arrival of Spanish, this was the second largest city in the Incan empire. There are many restaurants available to enjoy the taste of the country specially local cuisine.
Cuenca was recently nominated for the 7 Wonders Cities of the World title. To fully get to know the city, you need al least two days.
So, this was our Landforms in Ecuador list, what do you think?