Ecuador, a country of contrasts

Ecuador has many faces and is full of beautiful and interesting contrasts.

It is characterized by its singular topography and well defined natural areas.

Here you find a diversity of weather, ethnical groups and

one of the biggest biodiversity of the world !

 

Ecuador is the smallest country in South America located directly on the equator,

It is limited to the North by Colombia, to the East and South by Peru and

to the West by the Pacific Ocean.

The continental territory is located at minus 5 hours and Galapagos at 6 hours with respect to the Greenwich Meridian (GMT).

 

Map of South America with Equator Line indicating Ecuador and Galapagos

 

The Andes “Cordillera” divides the country in completely different natural areas and

greater regions with total different climate:

The Andean Highlands reaches averages between 12 – 20 °C,

the  Amazon 24 – 30 °C, the Coast 22 – 30 °C and Galapagos 22 – 32 °C.

Ecuador has 2 seasons:

rainy between December and May and dry between June and September.

But to Ecuador you can travel all year round.

 Map of Equador indicating the 4 different regions: Galápagos, Highlands, Amazon and Coast

Ecuador’s population is estimated at 12 million people belonging to a multiplicity of  ethnic origins. The greatest population is concentrated in the cities Guayaquil,          Quito and Cuenca.

Official language is Spanish; nevertheless Quechua is still spoken in small native towns. English, Italian, German and French are spoken in the main tourist centers.

Ecuador is a democratic country:

The Constitution of the Republic envisages 3 powers to the state:

Executive (President and Vice-president), Legislative (Congress) and

Judicial (Supreme Court).

 

To enter Ecuador visitors need a valid passport, in addition to a visa certificate issued by an Ecuadorian Consulate.

Depending on various agreements signed between Ecuador and other governments, some visitors do  not require a visa to enter the country. With presentation for their passport, boarding pass and return ticket a 90 day permit is issued.

 

Vaccinations are not required but…

recommended: Yellow fever, Hepatitis and Typhoid

Malaria stand-by medication (only for the Northern coast and the Amazon, for Galapagos not necessary)

 

Money: $ (US dollars !) We recommend $ cash or  $ Traveler Cheques

Take care with credit cards: they add up to 22% tax and service

In Galapagos only Mastercard and Visa are accepted !!!

 

To know the Galapagos Islands, cities, snowcapped mountains,

the amazing jungle and the wonderful beaches you only need to travel short distances of 2 hours flight or one day bus ride …

 

Ecuador has 2 International Airports: “Mariscal Sucre” in Quito the country’s capital and “Simon Bolivar” in Guayaquil.

Airport tax to leave the country is $ 25.

 

The main cities have domestic airport services for national flights connecting the entire country including the province of Galapagos with airports in Baltra and San Cristobal.

 

Ground transportation:

The Pan-American highway traverses the country from North to South.

Bus services between the provinces are available at bus stations in all cities of the country. Urban transportation allows mobilization to all points of interest.

Persons entering the country driving a private car need an international driving license.

A railway system connects the highland with the coast on pre-established routes

(service has been temporarily suspended) and especially available for adventure tourism.

 

Several shipping companies operate from the main Ecuadorian ports to destinations all over the world. Most of them are commercial.

Riverboat transportation is available in the coastal area and the Amazon Basin. Cruises to the Galapagos are also offered.

 

Bank hours are from 9 am – 4 pm, some banks have special working hours on

Saturdays from 9 am – 2 pm, in addition automated tellers work 24 hours a day.

The main shopping malls open everyday from 9.30 am – 8 pm. Credit cards accepted !

 

For communication from all over the world use the telephone code for Ecuador 593 and the additional internal city code and phone number. For domestic calls add 0…

Electricity power is 100/120 volts.

We are the Championstours

Joaquin Pinto 431 y Av. Amazonas, Quito, Ecuador, Telefax: 593-2-2543099

Av. Charles Darwin, Puerto Ayora, Isla Santa Cruz, Galapagos, Ecuador, Telefax: 593-5-526951

E-mail: info@wearethechampionstours.com

www.wearethechampionstours.com

www.galapagosparadise.com

 

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