Some people give this incredibly diverse country a miss or rush through it in order to get from Colombia down the Panamericana to Peru as fast as possible. Bad mistake! I spent three month here and still missed out on so much!
As far as food is concerned: I visited and reviewed heaps of restaurants in Ecuador, ten (!) of which in Quito alone. So don’t worry: even in a meat lovers country you’ll be alright. You’ll get Ceviche (beans, platanos, popcorn (!), and a tomato-lemon-onion sauce) at food stalls on the street, a good in-between snack (there is a meat/fish-version as well, so be cautious). But don’t get too tempted with the panaderias, 99% of the rolls etc are either made with milk or egg (or both). Ask for pan de agua, which is vegan.
Are you planning on visiting Galápagos? Lucky you! But as far as food is concerned: get a hostel with a kitchen and prepare your own food. And don’t get too frustrated with seafood munching tourists. Live and let live (if only that was true for them lobsters and the other poor creatures that, only moments ago, were the big stars on any snorkel tour…).
Anyway, here are my personal Top 5 lists (anybody read Hornby’s „High Fidelity“?…), starting -of course- with my favorite restaurants in Ecuador. For all the other ones, more pics and further info on those mentioned below, please visit Ecuador
Top 5 vegan restaurants in Ecuador
1. Cafe Libre, Cuenca 🏆
2. Dulce Albahaca, Quito
3. Fresco Cafe, San Christobal, Galápagos
4. Pacha Manta, Mindo
5. El Maple, Quito AND Urku Warmi, Vilcabamba
1. Hands down, this gotta be: Rhiannon Community! 🏆
Top 5 natural highlights
1. Animal encounters (Sharks, Rays, Blue footed Boobies, Turtles, Iguanas, Flamingos, and Sealions galore) on Galápagos Islands🏆
2. Hike to Cuicocha Crater Lake, close to Otavalo
3. Hummingbird overdose in Mindo
4. Diablo waterfall near Baños
5. Spectacular sunsets behind snow peaked volcanos from Malchingui
1. Diving in shark infested waters, Galápagos🏆
2. Mountain bike down Volcano Chimborazo, Ecuador’s highest peak
3. Zip lining and the Tarzan-Swing in Mindo
4. Bike tour „La Ruta de las Cascadas“ and following soak in the steaming thermal pools in Baños
5. Hiking the Quilotoa Loop
Enjoy Ecuador to the fullest, experience everything from Amazonian Jungle to the place closest to the sun (take that, Mt. Everest!) and everything in between. Join one of the many Volleyball matches. Mingle with the locals. Buy a stylish hat. Enjoy the nature and be offline for a while. And don’t get upset by those ever present car alarms. It’s the sound of Ecuador!
Enjoy Ecuador!…and keep on traveling!
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