While Ecuador was smaller than our first country Colombia, and smaller than the others we will visit in South America it did not mean that it did not have a huge amount to offer. Even though we started off on the wrong foot with the Ecuadorian bus system and public transport, things did improve as time went on and while the drivers do not deserve any gold stars, they are certainly more vigilant than their neighbours in Colombia!
Quito exposed us to our first real experience of altitude, as well as some amazing architecture and impressive buildings, local foods and fruits that we had never encountered before, and a keenness for hiking up, down and around volcanoes! When we got to Banos we were reminded of the town of San Gil in Colombia which we had visited a few weeks before – more adventure operators and adrenaline junkies than you can imagine! We enjoyed swinging from the end of the world with minimal safety harnesses and throwing ourselves down some waterfalls there.
I think no matter what else we experience on this trip over the next few months, the Galapagos will forever remain an outlier in my mind as a trip highlight. It was the most surreal, magical thing I have ever experienced and for that, Ecuador will always have a place in my heart!
Highlight: Visiting the Galapagos
Lowlight: illness-2; Niamh-0