Bienvenido a Ecuador! Ecuador is located in the northwest of the South American continent between Columbia in the north and Peru in the south.
The country can be broken down into four completely different zones; the coastal area (Costa), the Andes (Sierra), the forested Amazon lowland area (Oriente) and the Galapagos-islands. The vegetation is very diversified and species-rich.
You shouldn’t miss out on a trip to the Galapagos-islands where there are more than 3000 different species of animal and plant. Don’t miss too, the amazing whale-watching season from June till September when during this time vast numbers of whales pass the Galapagos-Islands.
Besides some really good waves Ecuador has a lot of other activities to offer its visitors: kayaking, diving, snorkelling, horse riding or jungle trips. Visitors interested in a cultural trips should make a visit to the old Inca cities.
The climate in Ecuador is as diversified as the country itself. Basically you can find a warm climate on the west coast with quite a lot of rainfall. From the north to south the rainfall lessens.
In the mountains of the Andes, temperatures’ are of course much lower, and in higher reaches of the Andes, even alpine. The Amazonas basin by contrast is dominated by a humid and hot climate.
The dry season lasts from June till November; during this time the “Humboldt stream” cools down the air and there is less humidity.
Surfing in Ecuador is a great experience but the waves don’t have the size and power of Peru or Chile.
However the water is nice and warm and the waves are very clean, due to the long fetch that they have travelled from the northern and southern oceans.
Crowd factor: Higher closer to the big cities
The destination for all travellers flying in from another continent is the Aeropuerto Internacional José Joaquín de Olmedo (GYE), located 5 kilometres from Guayaquil.
From there you will find a lot of options to continue your journey by rented car, bus or taxi. You can also book a direct flight to Quito via the Aeropuerto Internacional Mariscal Sucre (UIO). Besides the two international airports there are several small airports, which can be connected to by many South-American cities.
For travellers, who are planning a longer stay in South America, it is advisable to get an “Air-pass” like the Mercosur Air-pass or the All American Air pass (including North America as well).
Within Ecuador you’re most likely to travel by domestic flights, busses or rented cars. A car will make sense if you want to visit more isolated areas.