Quito city is one of the first capital city that declared World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1978 along with Krakow, Poland. The Quito was founded by Spanish in the 16th century, on the ruins of an Inca city. Even though the city experienced many earthquakes, today it remains one of the most well preserved historic centers in the continent of America. The city’s streets and the buildings are must-see. Put it on your bucket list.
Ecuador’s economy was not working well some years ago, because of that the Ecuadorian government stopped using their own money, Sucre and started to use American dollars instead. In the beginning, most Ecuadorians were unhappy with the transformation because of their savings became worthless with the conversion. But nowadays, it is a different story. The people of Ecuador feel like they have more economic power in term of consumption since the reformation. The biggest downside of the transition is like the U.S.; the Ecuadorian Government has to pay fees to the Federal Reserve Bank to print their money.
I wanted to get some Sucre denominations that they used in Ecuador before the dollars to show you guys; but when I asked in few financial institutions, I was surprised to learn that they do not have any of the denominations in their vaults anymore.
The Quito city is 9,350 feet (2,850 meters) above sea level, and that can make you sick so fast without you realizing it. I am accustomed to elevation sickness because of my visit to Cuzco, Peru. By the way, the Quito is taking the second place with the high altitude in South America. The first one is La Paz, Bolivia and the third is Cuzco, Peru on the list. But if you are not accustomed to the symptoms, you might experience some fatigue on your first day in the city. I would advise to take your time and rest up until you feel comfortable especially if you are going to hike or climb to surrounding mountains. Besides fatigue, you might feel a headache or nausea as well as insomnia. If they do not ease, go and see a doctor. In Cuzco, I drank lots of cocoa leaves tea plus some hotels have oxygen tubes for guest. That’s something you would want to consider when you are booking your hotels in Quito. Do your research.
I am not going to give you a list of when you should visit Quito, Ecuador. Because in Quito, you get to experience the four seasons in one day. No joke. There are only two seasons; wet and dry. The wet season starts beginning of January and lasts until April and, dry season begins in May and ends in December, but as I said the weather condition is hard to predict because of the high altitude of the city. Just keep in mind, you might experience a slight change in the weather depending on the season you visit the city. So, always carry an umbrella or raincoat, and a light jacket with you. Having one of those is essential because I ended up buying a coat on every tour I took.
An hour later I landed in Quito, I took a four-hour free city tour with some hostel in the city, and I have to say I was impressed and satisfied. There are so many of them, and anyone I talked to said the same beautiful things about the free city tours. The hostels mostly offer them in Quito. You do not have to be a guest in their hostels to take their tours, but the hostels highly recommend the tips since the tours are free. The best thing I like is that the tour guides are mostly local people who were born and grew up in the area that they are showing and giving information. Our tour guide has a vast knowledge of the city’s history, economy and culture about the country and I loved it.