jueves, 22 de febrero de 2018

things to do before coming to Ecuador

Things to do before arriving in Ecuador 

Located between Colombia and Peru, Ecuador is a country in Latin America that is often little-known. 
It has one of the highest capitals in the world, based at 2'800 meters above sea level Quito overlooks its compatriots. 
The country itself has a very varied fields due to its high concentration of volcanoes. Speaking of volcanoes, Ecuador has the highest one in the world, the Chimborazo reaching an altitude of 6,263 meters.
It is a country divided into three distinct regions: the Pacific Coast, the Andean Cordillera and the Ecuadorian Amazon. Added to this are the Galapagos, a unique wildlife reservoir in the world.

Seasons 

Ecuador has a pleasant tropical climate that varies from region to region. The climate is very changeable, you can quickly pass from the marvellous sun to a torrential rain in a few hours.
There are 2 less and less differentiated seasons in Ecuador: 
  • The rainy season: from December to May, the climate is hot and humid.
  • The dry season: from June to November, the climate is dry with cooler temperatures.

Jetlag

Ecuador is in the GMT -5 zone (-6 for Galapagos), which corresponds to minus 7 hours in summer, and minus 6 hours in winter compared to Switzerland.

Visas 

Entry Visa: You must have a valid passport with an expiry date of 6 months after your return date. Usually you do not need a Visa if you want to make a tourist stay of less than 3 months and according to the country you come from. These conditions may change. Please check with the Ecuadorian Consulate in your country before departure to confirm this.

Money

In Ecuador, the official currency is the US dollar USD. Most credit cards are accepted in department stores and restaurants, and you can withdraw cash from domestic banks such as Pichincha Bank. 
It is advisable not to carry too much money when you walk in the street. 

Tips 

It is customary in Ecuador to reward the guide and driver who accompanied you throughout your trip.
At the end of your stay, do not forget to reward the work of those who will have "pampered" you throughout your journey by taking to heart to make you discover their country with passion.
We remind you that tips from guides and drivers are not included as they are not billed.

vaccinations

No vaccinations are mandatory in Ecuador, but we do advise you to be up-to-date on the "typical" vaccines of the traveller such as DT Polio, Hepatitis A and B. The yellow fever vaccine and malaria treatment are highly recommended for any stay in the Amazon.


Electricity

Standard American plug (2 flat plugs, 110 V, 60 Hz). Provide a universal or US-specific adapter.


Cars rent

The minimum age required according to the rental companies is often 25 years. You will be required to present an identity document and your country's driver's licence at the time of booking and at each police checkpoint. Road conditions in Ecuador are generally good, but the indications are not always present. We recommend that you exercise extreme caution and consult the insurance coverage limits. Driving in Quito during rush hour can be difficult, so we advise you to avoid working hours and rainy days (yes Ecuadorians generally don't like the rain). 


Security 

Ecuador is a fairly safe country. It does not present any particular danger to travellers who take a minimum of precautions and use common sense.

We recommend in particular:
  • Prohibit external signs of wealth,
  • to travel "compact",
  • Do not leave your bags and cameras unattended,
  • to use the safes in hotels when they are available,
  • take with you a photocopy of your documents (passport, driving licence,...)



miércoles, 7 de febrero de 2018

9 alternatives activities to do during the carnaval 2018 in Quito.

This weekend celebrates the end of winter all over the world. Ecuador is not to be outdone with its famous carnival which will take place from 10 to 14 February. The Ecuadorian carnival is very cultural and is celebrated with water, carnival foam, talcum powder, eggs and flour to paint your face or any kind of vegetable paint. There are differents activities involving children, youth and adults, have made this festival become a tourist and cultural event of great importance in the city. Artistic shows, parades with allegorical cars, among many other activities, have made the image of the carnival with water games, ink, flour and oil, fade away, to turn it into an event colorful and full of tradition, which for 4 days floods the streets of the city with a lot of rhythm and fun.

We prefer calm and tranquility during this period. It is why we are going to purpose you 9 alternatives activities that you can perform with your family and your friends during this weekend.

Outdoor activities:
Parque Arqueológico y Ecológico Rumipamba: This park is an outdoor museum site in the ancient human settlement on the slopes of the Pichincha.
Rumipamba means Valley of Stone. The Archaeological and Ecological Park Rumipamba shows us a small fraction of what was the occupation of Quito before the arrival of the Incas. The park is open from 09h00 to 16h00, Wednesday to Sunday. The park is free for everyone and it is a good place to relax in nature.
If you are interested this is the exact address of the park: Av. Mariana de Jesús y Av. Mariscal Sucre. (Av. Occidental).

Quilotoa
Discover one of Ecuador's most beautiful places, the Quilotoa volcano.
You have the possibility to pass by a travel agency to organize your day. Usually, the tour includes bus, lunch, dinner and guided tour.
It is highly recommended to wear warm clothes, walking shoes, sun cream and water.
This tour is amazing and takes you out of the capital for a little amount of time.

Museums
Visita Teatralizada
Have you heard the stories told inside the recollect church of San Diego, one of the best magical places of the city? Time seems to have forgotten to pass through there... Walk alongside with characters to discover this treasure of Quito on a special night.
It is a guided tour with professional disguised like in ancient era. You are going to visit San Diego in some another way.
Date: Saturday 10 February 2018
Departures: 19h00 and 20h00
General value: $10.00 - Differential: $8.00
Meeting point: Handicrafts Shop El Quinde (Mirror and Venezuela, corner)

Un mirador hacia las estrellas
Quito Astronomical Observatory was founded in 1873, this Ecuadorian scientific and cultural institution is located in Quito's La Alameda Park. This Observatory is in charge of three different activities sectors, Astronomy, education and training with the aim of investigating the peculiar and little studied equatorial skies.

Quito's Astronomical Observatory is one of the oldest in South America and the only observatory in Ecuador. The National Polytechnic School manages the Quito Astronomical Observatory.
In addition, the Observatory has relied almost from its beginnings on a meteorological station, the same one that studies and reports the different climatic variations of the city.
There is also a Museum that you can get, to know in a personal and vivid way the history of the instruments used by the first astronomers and scientists of the country.

It is an activity very rewarding if you like local history and space. The museum is open from Tuesday to Sunday (10:00 to 17:00). 

Theater

If you like theater you are welcome to assist to one of those plays.

LA MUJER, EL MUERTO Y SU AMANTE is a musical comedy about the sweet taste of revenge written by Mario Bert. The story tell the life of a woman who wakes up in what appears to be her home's kitchen as she prepares the most important dinner of her life. In the process the woman takes us through a journey full of laughter, spite, love and sensuality. But something's wrong with this kitchen. Things disappear and the wife keeps remembering her late husband and lover, her mother and a rabbit her best friend.
For more information we encourage you to go to this website: http://www.quitocultura.info/event/la-mujer-el-muerto-y-su-amante/

NO QUIERO MORIR VIRGEN is a musical Comic Poetic Evening with Juana Guarderas. The play "No quiero morir virgen" is a comic monologue by Juana Guarderas with an interactive proposal that raises different games with the public from various gags and comic numbers that arise from the occurrences of this funny "damsel morlaca". During all the stage you are going to interact with Mr Guarderas and it is very funny. For more information about time schedules and prices please go to that link: http://www.quitocultura.info/event/no-quiero-morir-virgen-6/.

Carnavals
Carnaval de la Interculturalidad
The Eugenio Espejo Zonal Administration will hold the "District Carnival of Interculturality" at the United Nations Boulevard, on Saturday 10 February from 10h00 to 13h00.
This event will feature a cultural carnival with ten characters, icons of the festival, which will be led by the manager Lorena Nieto. There will be six dance groups, two musical groups and the participation of a village band.

Around 200 local managers representing the interculturality and diversity of carnival in the country will be present.

Festival de Carnaval Ciudad Mitad del Mundo 2018
In Ciudad Mitad del Mundo there is a special carnival with a lot of differents artists. This Carnaval lasts 4 days and entry costs are the same as usual ($5 for a normal ticket and $2.50 for a differentiated ticket). Great artists and surprises for everyone. There is a list with all artists for 4 days: Paulina Tamayo, Bathaola Orchestra, Jaime Enrique Aymara, Sweet Poison, Skala Group, The Rodriguezes, Los Garles Trio, Trio Valentino, Dance Group Revelations of my Land, Dance Group Ñucanchi Allpa, Pumallacta Dance Group.

Other:
If your thing is to dress up, but you don't like the carnival atmosphere, you still have the option of going to Inayusha Bloody Fest 2018. The Greatest Comic, Anime, Cosplay, Dubbing and Video Games Convention is back!

Anime Bloody Valentine fest (Inuyasha) Anime Convention is from the Friday 9th Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 February at the Quito Chamber of Commerce) with great national and international guests!
If you are interested you can find more information about guests and activities there: http://www.quitocultura.info/event/inuyasha-bloody-fest-2018/

Finally we would like to recommend you to enjoy your festive weekend either at the carnival or in the activities that we have proposed to you.

Buen fin de semana a todos.