Straddling the Equator, Ecuador is a small country in North Western South America. An unspoiled gem and an ecological treasure, Ecuador boasts over 1,600 varieties of birds, 680 types of reptile and 20,000 species of plant.
Geographically diverse from East to West, the Amazon in the East is alive with monkeys, birds and reptiles. In the highlands are smoking volcanoes, colonial towns with colourful Indian markets and Inca Ruins. To the West lie the empty Pacific beaches and tropical plantations whilst far out in the Pacific Ocean are the partially submerged volcanic Galapagos Islands, a sanctuary for exotic species such as the giant tortoise, Iguanas, blue footed boobies and the albatross.
When to Visit
As diverse as its geography, the Ecuadorian climate differs from region to region. The climate is highly unpredictable but as a general rule, the following applies:
In the East (Amazon), October to February is considered the dry season with March to September being wet. However, heavy rain can fall at any time. In the highlands (Quito and Riobamba) there is little variation in temperature from day to day, or even between the seasons. Quito is at an altitude of approximately 9,400ft above sea level, giving spring-like conditions. Warm during the day and cool in the morning and evening. The rainy season in Quito is from October to May. The Pacific coast is wetter in the South than in the North. Here January to May is the hottest and wettest time of the year. The Galapagos Islands are hottest from January to April.
The high season for tourists in Ecuador is June to September with a short season from December to January. Ecuador does not usually become overcrowded.