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Ecuador Travel Answers

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Oct 04, 2016
Travelling the west coast of Ecuador  (1 Answer)

How accessible is travel from Salinas north to Manta and San Lorenzo Esmeraidas and what are the accommodation like, after the recent earthquake, April 2016?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Sep 18, 2016
6 days in Ecuador - stick to day trips from Quito?  (2 Answers)

I will be in Ecuador for 6 days in October, flying into and out of Quito. I'm in my 40s, traveling solo, and my main interests are nature and authentic local experiences (e.g. authentic markets, rural life etc.). I strongly prefer independent travel over organized groups, but due to the short time I have, I might have to make some sacrifices there to avoid wasting time in long bus rides.
Unfortunately I won't make it to Galapagos, so I'm not sure whether I should stay in Quito, spending 2-3 days in the city and going on day trips from there (e.g. to Cotopaxi, otavalo and Mindo), or is one of these places, or any other place, worth an overnight or longer trip.
Any advice on how to experience the most nature and local experiences in such a short trip will be highly appreciated. Thanks !!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Sep 01, 2016
transfer from airport to Sheraton Quito  (2 Answers)

We arrive 11 pm . What is best way for senior citizens to get to hotel from Quito airport and what is the price?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Aug 23, 2016
What is the best way to access Montecristi in Manabi at the moment after the earthquakes?  (2 Answers)

I am from Australia and need to plan a trip to Montecristi in Manabi province in order to provide relief aid. What would be the best way to get there? Thank you

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · May 07, 2016
Visiting Vilacabamba and cotatachi

What should I pack and be aware of in the region?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Apr 02, 2016
What items to take in a backpack?  (8 Answers)

Hello all,

I am leaving in May for a trip in Ecuador and Peru. Right now I am not sure how long I will stay there, but I am thinking it will be from 2 to three months. As time to leave gets closer, I need to get a bag ready, but I then had some questions.

1. Would it be worth taking a tent? It takes up a considerable amount of space and I am planning on going to hostels on the first week or two so that I can meet other travelers, as I am travelling alone. What are your thoughts?
2. Shoes. This is a simple one, but I just want to hear form others. I was thinking about having a pair of sandals, a pair of sturdy shoes for hiking and some more simple running shoes.
3. Clothes. Reltaed to the above, should I take jeans, that have a thicker fabric, or more shorts and sweatpants because they are more comfortable? I was thinking about a 2 shorts, 2 jeans for the mountains and sweatpants, but it might be too much/little.
4. Anything else? Any suggestions are welcome. I will make s imple first aid kit with gauze, bandages, some ibuprophen, acetaminophan and band aids. I will get insurance, just in case, take some tank tops, some tshirst and a hoodie and a thick jacket for the mountains of Peru. I heard that some people take a small pressure cooker with them, but is it worth it?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Mar 27, 2016
Macara and the Jorupe

OK, another last minute long shot. Has anyone been there? First, I am having a hard time finding hotel prices online. any suggestions? Decent, clean, a quiet room not on the street, suitable for a single older lady? Two, I would be stopping there because I want to see the petroglyphs. Has anyone seen them? Are they difficult to access? And three, the plan is to go on to Chiclayo (I will post on Peru too) - Google says it is only 4 and half hours on the Pan American but is it really that easy? with border crossing, luggage, etc? Google is not god! Thanks, Jean

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Mar 19, 2016
Equinox celebrations  (2 Answers)

This is a last minute long shot, but here goes. Equinox is soon here! I know that in Cayambe there are celebrations, and in Tulipe, but I will be far from both places. Heading to Cuenca Monday, actually. Does anyone know of anything going on in that area? Thanks, Jean

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Mar 09, 2016
Getting the visa situation straight  (2 Answers)

Hi - I just want to get this clear. I am an American citizen on my free 90 day visa. I thought I could renew or go out and come back for another 90 days. But I just found out that I cannot, that if I want to spend one day longer in the country I have to pay $400 for a six month visa, no other option. That is too expensive for me, and I dont want to stay for six months anyway. The rainy season is driving me crazy so I was thinking of going somewhere for a couple of months then coming back for the dry festival season in June and July. So if I dont use all my 90 days would they count the days on my passport and, when I return, grant me the days remaining? Is that a definite policy or could I have problems? Thank you, Jean

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Feb 24, 2016
Credit card blocked because of the country?  (9 Answers)

This is more about sharing experience than a tourist question. My bank was fully informed that I was in Ecuador but my card was still blocked, and I was told that was because it was a blocked or blacklisted country. I was astounded. Has this happened to anyone else? They also said - trying to pass the buck hahaha - that countries blocked cards. Ecuador blocking an American Visa card? Impossible to imagine. What do you think of this? Maybe North Korea....but not a country that likes the States, is full of expats and needs the tourist trade! Any ideas?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Feb 10, 2016
Dental emergency - Quito  (11 Answers)

Hello - I am traveling in southern Colombia (in the countryside now) on my way out and to Ecuador, and I broke a front teeth and need dental work fast. I wrote to my embassy expecting some kind of reference and the reply, in bad English, was that they had no references. This is not normal. Can anyone recommend a good dentist or advise me on how to get in touch with some kind of American (or European) citizens' groups in Quito? This is urgent, thank you!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Jan 23, 2016
Drive or driver  (8 Answers)

My husband and I will be in Ecuador in February. We are not familiar with the road conditions or traffic. We don't have the time to take busses so we either need to drive or hire a driver (very expensive). We will be traveling from Quito to Otavalo, (flying from Quito to Cuenca), Cuenca to Canoa and then back to Quito. We have driven in many countries, but wanted your thoughts regarding driving in Ecuador.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Jan 05, 2016
Proposed Itinerary  (12 Answers)

With your help (thank you) I have put together an nine day itinerary for our February trip to Ecuador. After taking a look please let me know if this looks reasonable given travel times within the country:
Feb 9 night spent in Quito (driver to Cotacachi)
Feb 10, 11, 12 in Cotacachi (and exploring this area) (Fly to Cuenca)
Feb 13, 14 in Cuenca (driver ????? car rental???? to Montanita)
Feb 15, 16 in Canoa and Montanita (driver ?????? to Quito)
Feb 17 in Quito and fly home the 18
If you have a driver you really liked please let me know. We will be staying in VRBO/airbnb accommodations throughout except in Quito where we will stay in a hotel close to the airport - any recommendations?
Thanks to everyone who shared your experiences with me. They were of such help.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Dec 30, 2015
Ecuador - The best 8 day itinerary  (9 Answers)

My husband and I will be in Ecuador for 8 days (with two travel days to/from the US) in February. We will start and end our trip in Quito. I would love to hear what you would recommend as an itinerary for our time there.
We like: mountains, moderate hiking, beach towns, learning as much as we can about how people live, beautiful scenery, good local food....almost everything except sitting in one place relaxing. Should we drive, take a train, get a driver? Are there things we just shouldn't miss while there?
We have just decided to go and this is my first step in planning so I am totally open to your suggestion.
Thank you!!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Dec 19, 2015
What to do in Cuenca, Quito and Tena  (5 Answers)

Hello, I was planning on going on a backpacking trip to Ecuador this summer with my friend. I was wondering if you had any recommendations for hostels, places to eat that aren't too expensive and things to do in the three cities. Thank you in advance!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Nov 25, 2015
Refund From Tame  (3 Answers)

I Recently bought refundable airline tickets from Tame. However, my travel plans have changed and I need to cancel my flights. I have sent numerous emails and phone calls, however the Refund Department is not responding.

Does anyone know how I can go about getting my refund?



Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Nov 12, 2015
Ecuador, ecig supplies and nicotine juice  (1 Answer)

Are ecig supplies and nicotine juices readily available in Ecuador... specifically Quito? Mompeche? If so, how would you rate quality, purity, pricing? Thanks, in advance.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Nov 10, 2015
One month in acuador  (3 Answers)

Hello I'm planning to travel in Ecuador for a month January 2016 already booked Galapagos and amazon and I booked acomodation in Quito for 4 days. then I will have 2 weeks to visit otovallo mindo latacunga cotopaxi banos and cuenca.
I'm a solo traveller. Guys do you think that I will be able to see the places I posted.

Will it be easy to buy flights from cuenca to quito there and then please?

I don't like to book accommodation in advance and you think it's easy to find on the way?

Any suggestions will help.


Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Nov 07, 2015
Experiential tourism in Ecuador  (1 Answer)

Or someone knows a web site where you can find guides to take me to places not so traditional.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Oct 30, 2015
What to do in Ecuador?  (5 Answers)

What are the top 10 most important thing to do?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Sep 08, 2015
Clothes for Ecuador  (4 Answers)

We r traveling to Ecuador from 12 th sept to 27 th sept. We r visiting Quito, hakuna matata lodge near Archidona and the Galápagos islands. Can u advice on the kind of clothes to take?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Aug 31, 2015
Tango milongas in Quito?  (3 Answers)

Hi, I love dancing Tango, would like to go to a milonga – can you recommend good places in Quito? Thank you!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Aug 24, 2015
Meeting up with others

Hello, is anyone going to be in Ecuador during the weeks of October 18 to November 7th. I am starting out in Quito and making my way down to Cuenca via Banos and Quilotao (praying that Cotapaxi will not erupt or cause problems) and then flying back to Quito from where I head home.

If anyone will be there it would be great to meet up either for a dinner or afternoon or to travel by bus between locations or even to spend a few days if we are in the same place at the same time.

Hoping to meet you all.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Aug 22, 2015
Ecuador itinerary  (2 Answers)

Hello, I am visiting Ecuador for 3 weeks in mid October. I will be arriving in Quito on Oct 18th in the afternoon and then flying out from Quito on November 7th in the morning to and from Quito (UIO) airport. Is this airport the newer one that is an hour and a half from Quito? If so I will see if I can stay close to the airport on my final evening there since I leave early in the morning. Any suggestions?

Here is what I would ideally like to see. I would like to spend a couple of days in Quito. I would also like to visit Otavalo and maybe Mindo (if I can fit it in) and also the avenue of the volcanoes. I would then like to make my way down to Cuenca and see Lake Quilatoa and Banos along the way.

I would then have to make my way back from Cuenca up to Quito which I will do a few days before I leave. It was suggested that I fly back from Cuenca to Quito since it they are quite a distance apart. I was wondering if alternately I could stop on the way there at Quilatoa and then on the way back at Banos in order to cut down on bus times. I would then spend my last day or two in Quito before heading home.

Would my itinerary be doable in 3 weeks or would I have to cut out some places. I would rather keep it so that I stay at least 3 or 4 nights in some places and maybe a couple of nights in the places along the way so that I am not running myself ragged. Can Otavalo be done as a day trip to and from Quito?

Sorry for all the questions but your help would be appreciated. I am also doing as much reading and asking as I can to do my homework.

Thank you.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Aug 15, 2015
Flying in and out of Ecuador  (4 Answers)

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?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Aug 14, 2015
Surfing lessons in Canoa in September?  (2 Answers)

I would love to take some surfing lessons but I read that September is not the best month for surfing – so what does it mean, is surfing impossible at all?
Also, I read about “garua” – what kind of weather should we expect in September on the beaches (Canoa, Bahia, Puerto Lopez?)
Thank you!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Aug 13, 2015
Reserve travel in advance or book on the spot?  (4 Answers)

we are travelling in September for 2 weeks, thinking of Quito – Cuenca - Puerto Lopez (Isla de la Plata) – Bahia/ Canoa – Quito.

Question 1: Regarding the accommodations and travels for local buses or flights, do we need to book everything in advance, or can we do it on the spot? It would be nice to be flexible and stay a few extra days in one place if we like it. (I speak Spanish fluently – this must help…)

Question 2: Overnight bus Canoa – Quito: has anybody taken it? how safe is it?

May thanks!

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Aug 11, 2015
Changing dates with TAME  (6 Answers)

So I am here in Ecuador now because I am using a Round-Trip Flight. I got here from JFK airport in june 27th and i will be heading there in august 27th. i want to change of heading to JFK but I don't know the fees neither if it is possible, please help. Thank you.

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Jun 07, 2015
To El Bosque Petrificado Puyango  (5 Answers)

Next time I go to Ecuador I would like to visit El Bosque Petrificado Puyango.

How can I get there by public transport from Lojas? How long would it take?

How can I get there by public transport from Zaruma? How long would it take?

Q   a VirtualTourist member asked a question · Apr 05, 2015
Visiting Ecuador  (4 Answers)

I am thinking of visiting Ecuador around October/November of this year. I am hoping to take 3 weeks in total and would like to visit Quito, Banos, Cuenca and some other places. I don't think I will go to the Galapagos as much as I would love to because of the high costs involved in going. Is this time frame enough to visit Ecuador. Would I be able to perhaps also take in Columbia or Peru or is it better just to stick with Ecuador. I look forward to hearing what you have to say. Thanks.

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