Explore Ecuador in South America

Country Guide

Map of the area of  in

Ecuador with its capital Quito is located in South America (Western South America, bordering the Pacific Ocean at the Equator). It covers some 283,561 square kilometres (slightly smaller than Nevada) with 13,927,000 citizens. Spanish is the language commonly used by the people in Ecuador. It is charing borders with Peru and Colombia.

Ecuador is a country in South America with a Pacific Ocean coastline and the world's highest active volcano (Cotopaxi). Intercity buses travel to almost everywhere in Ecuador. Many cities have a central bus terminal, known as the terminal terrestre. Quito is a great place to learn Spanish. Quite a few private Spanish academies exist. Quality varies greatly, so check reviews online and speak to current students before enrolling. Ecuador uses the U.S. dollar as its currency. Other types of currency are not readily accepted. Water from the tap is unsafe to drink. Even Ecuadorians generally only drink bottled (or boiled) water. Ecuador offers great opportunities for hiking and climbing, unfortunately, some travelers have been attacked and robbed in remote sections of well known climbs. Travelers are urged to avoid solo hikes and to go in a large group for safety reasons. You can always ask tourist police officers, police officers or in Tourist information center for the dangerous regions. Outside the major cities and tourist areas, malaria can be a problem along the coast during the rainy season.


Pictures from the Ecuadorian capital

Have a look at our dedicated photo collection to get a view of what Quito is like. We have selected more pictures from Quito on our dedicated gallery page.

Awesome photos provided by Panoramio are under the copyright of their owners.

Landscape, climate and basic hints for travelling

National Tourism Office

Website: Ecuador Tourism

Phone: +593 2 2507 559
Phone: +593 2 2229 330

The landscape features coastal plain (costa), inter-Andean central highlands (sierra), and flat to rolling eastern jungle (oriente). The average density of population is about 49 per km². The climate in Ecuador can be described as tropical along coast, becoming cooler inland at higher elevations with tropical in Amazonian jungle lowlands. Potential threats by nature are frequent earthquakes or landslides, volcanic activity, floods or periodic droughts.

To reach someone in Ecuador dial +593 prior to a number. There are 2,004,000 installed telephones. And there are 13,635,000 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks operate on frequencies of 1800 Mhz. Websites typically end with the top level domain ".ec". If you want to bring electric appliances (e.g. battery charger), keep in mind the local 120V - 60Hz.

Learn more on our Ecuadorian Facts page.

Description of the flag of Ecuador

Three horizontal bands of yellow (top, double width), blue, and red with the coat of arms superimposed at the center of the flag; the flag retains the three main colors of the banner of Gran Columbia, the South American republic that broke up in 1830; the yellow color represents sunshine, grain, and mineral wealth, blue the sky, sea, and rivers, and red the blood of patriots spilled in the struggle for freedom and justice
note: similar to the flag of Colombia, which is shorter and does not bear a coat of arms.

National administrative regions of Ecuador

Historical background information

What is now Ecuador formed part of the northern Inca Empire until the Spanish conquest in 1533. Quito became a seat of Spanish colonial government in 1563 and part of the Viceroyalty of New Granada in 1717. The territories of the Viceroyalty - New Granada (Colombia), Venezuela, and Quito - gained their independence between 1819 and 1822 and formed a federation known as Gran Colombia. When Quito withdrew in 1830, the traditional name was changed in favor of the "Republic of the Equator." Between 1904 and 1942, Ecuador lost territories in a series of conflicts with its neighbors. A border war with Peru that flared in 1995 was resolved in 1999. Although Ecuador marked 30 years of civilian governance in 2004, the period was marred by political instability. Protests in Quito contributed to the mid-term ouster of three of Ecuador's last four democratically elected Presidents. In late 2008, voters approved a new constitution, Ecuador''s 20th since gaining independence. General elections were held in February 2013, and voters re-elected President Rafael CORREA.

Learn more on our Ecuadorian Facts page.

Based on the content from wikitravel.org. The original article can be found here based on the work of these users. Geography information is based on the data provided by geonames.org, CIA world facts book Edition 2010 and 2013, Unesco, DBpedia, wikipedia and others.