Hello, I am in the planning stages of my 3 week trip to Ecuador in October and would like to possibly visit Quito and then make my way down to Cuenca stopping off at a place or two on the way. I was originally going to do a round trip and fly in and out of Quito which means that I would have to make my way back from Cuenca either by bus or by plane. Now I am wondering if it might be easier for me to fly home from Guyaquil. I have heard it is not that nice a city but I don't mind staying there one night on my last night. Would it be closer from Cuenca to go to Guyaquil rather than go back up to Quito?
I've stayed at the Hilton in both Quito and Guyaquil and although I didn't have time to wander around Guyaquil too much I didn't find it unappealing. If it's closer I'd choose that option.
There are some interesting places to visit in Guayaquil (as well as some neighborhoods to stay out of.) The Malecon Simon Bolivar was a good place to wander when I was there, but I don't know what it is like now. You might also check the cost of flying from Cuenca back to Quito to catch your return flight, and comparing the total cost of that to the Guayaquil option.
The distance of Cuenca to Guayaquil is about have the distance from Cuenca to Quito. A full road circular route is possible. The iguanas in the main plaza are perhaps the most interesting thing about Guayaquil, but certainly not the only thing. If money matters to you, you should carefully explore your flight options. Sometimes flying in and out of one city is cheaper than flying into one city and out another, but not always. You might find it cheaper to fly in and out of Guayaquil than to fly in and out of Quito.
Have a great trip.
Thank you all for your help and answers. I will weigh all options but I think I may do round trip Quito and then return to Quito by plane either from Cuenca or Guayaquil.