Ecuador: Mike Walter & Team Explore Quito
Greetings from Ecuador!
Today was the first official day of our Ecuador Volcanoes trip. After an excellent breakfast at our hotel (which included fresh fruit and juices from the region, like papaya, pineapple, watermelon, and guanabana), we set off on a tour of Quito. Led by our local city guide and expert historian, Jorge, we traveled to the historic Old Town Quito. We toured the Basilica and other historic churches in the district, learning the history of their creation and their unique architectural styles. We also visited the Presidential Palace, Ecuador’s House of Congress, and Independence Square. Then the team headed up to the hill on the outskirts of Quito known as El Panecillo. Here, in addition to seeing the large statue of the Virgin of Quito, we were afforded a panoramic view of Quito.
The next stop on the trip was at a beautiful restaurant/hotel for lunch, where we all sampled classic Ecuadorian cuisine; the meal started with an empanada, then a potato/cheese/avocado soup known as locro de queso. The main course was Fritada, or fried pork, accompanied by corn, plantain, and potatoes. The meal finished off with a delicious homemade ice cream with a fruit sauce made of babaco and guanabana.
With full bellies, we headed north to visit an ethnographic museum located exactly on the equator, where we were able to stand with one foot in the northern hemisphere and one in the southern hemisphere!
The day concluded with a great dinner, lots of joking around, and laughter at the well-known Magic Bean restaurant. Tomorrow we will go on our first acclimatization hike to the volcano Rucu Pichincha.
Everyone is doing great and we all send a big “Hola” to everyone back home. I will be in touch tomorrow with pictures and an update of our hike.
RMI Guide Mike Walter