Budget Ecuador Travel Guide – 8 Ways to Save More Money

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Ecuador Travel Guide

Budget Ecuador Travel Guide includes 18 Important Travel Planning Tips that will allow you to see and do more on your budget. Learn how you can benefit.

Welcome to the Ecuador Travel Guide! Ecuador is one of those ‘lesser-traveled’ gems that is compact enough to easily roam about while varied enough to make every day as fascinating and exciting as you choose to make it. Few countries manage to cram such ecological diversity into such a comparatively small area.

Hoatzin bird from Ecuador also known as the skunk and stink bird
Hoatzin bird from Ecuador also known as the skunk and stink bird

You’ll be able to explore vast National Parks, take trips along the Amazon river, hike through the jungle, bike across mountainous regions, and plenty more besides. Ecuador also happens to have some of the best and most unspoiled colonial-era architecture on the continent – and you’ll truly be blown away by how atmospheric those towns and cities can become.

While Ecuador is not yet towards the top of many people’s ‘hit list’ of South and Central American countries it is rapidly becoming more popular (helped in no small part by enjoying a period of relative political and social stability). It is without question one of the best ‘see-me-now’ countries out there at the moment!

What Are the Best Places to Visit in Ecuador?

Many visitors to Ecuador tend to find that the towns and cities rate among the friendliest and most colorful in the region. Quito is one of the most laid back cities you’ll discover anywhere, and one of the best in the world for exploring by foot or bike. Make sure to head out into the surrounding hillside to see how this mishmash of European, Moorish, and ancient Inca styles combine so elegantly together.

The Ciudad Mitad del Mundo (equatorial landmark) is worth a trip slightly out of town for those who like to take iconic photos and make sure to also check out the Basilica del Voto (historic cathedral) and the vibrant surrounding markets. While Quito has plenty to offer most people tend to only spend a handful of days here as a base for setting out to explore the rest of this incredible country.

As most people will arrive in Ecuador via Quito, the next logical step is to head out towards the relatively nearby Laguna de Cuicoacha for some lakeside tranquility and/or the more forested Mindo region. Both of these serve as excellent initial insights into what you can expect to find as you venture further into the country.

One of the beautiful aspects of Ecuador is that you rarely need to travel too far to find yourself practically transported to an entirely different ecological system! Those who are only able to visit Ecuador for a short period – perhaps around the capital city while sandwiched between a trip out to the Galapagos Islands – should find that these destinations alone give a good insight into the country.

If you are lucky enough to have longer to spend in mainland Ecuador then you’ll swiftly find yourself really falling in love with this country. Your choices are to either head towards the Andes – and remember that it’s advisable to take it slowly to gradually acclimatize to the altitude – or aim south towards the more rolling aspects of the natural terrain.

If you opt for the Andes then you’ll enjoy some of the most varied and atmospheric trails going. Quilotoa is most people’s early ‘target’ and do your best to take as much time as possible to explore the many side rails. It is easy enough to get between towns but for a true Andean experience you may want to try taking pony trails, hiking, or even taking the occasional mountain railway for a real white knuckle adventure! The iconic Volcan Chimborazo is well worth taking in – it is one of those sites where photography doesn’t quite do justice to how enormous and curiously ‘placed’ the ancient volcano seems to be.

Head on towards Cuenca for some tranquil colonial-style R&R after those high altitude adventures. It is a magical place and one that would rank in the Ecuador Travel Guides as ‘truly unmissable’ throughout South America as a whole.

Should you instead choose to head south, you’ll cover much more ground and still enjoy some sensational nature. High altitude exploration can present some challenges and progress – depending on your chosen mode of transport – is understandably often quite slow. The south is much more accessible and where you’ll find the key national parks.

There are plenty to choose between but our advice would be to aim to spend at least a full week in the Parque Nacional Podocarpus, not just because it’s enormous but also because it’s incredibly varied. Look at ways to semi-split your time between wildlife spotting and taking in the views, while kicking back and relaxing in friendly local villages come sundown.

The Oriente is well worth a couple of weeks – and be sure to try and take the best possible local tours to understand how insanely diverse jungle life can be. Our advice would be to try and book up well in advance with one of the many such operations managed and run through local preservation charities, or to opt to stay with locals and take their guides on the spot. Both will ensure that funds earned go towards the preservation/conservation of the environment and provide sustenance of the local economy.

There are endless options for exploration in the jungle but you’ll find that the vast majority of tours stick to certain areas. You’ll be able to charter specialist private hires if you need one – but we’d recommend most visitors stick to the established Coca/Tena/Rio Napo routes.

No matter how active you might be there’s going to be a limit of how many mountains and jungles you can handle! Ecuadorian beaches are still remarkably underestimated and offer the perfect way to kick back for several days of casual, laid back exploration. The picturesque fishing villages are incredibly welcoming and make sure to try your luck with the ‘catch of the day’ specials offered throughout the busy little marketplaces.

Same is probably the most ‘postcard-perfect’ spot (although not as peaceful as it once were), Mompiche is the capital of Ecuadorian surf style, while Isla Portete is worth the effort getting to if you need a few days of comparative isolation/peace and quiet!

The Ecuador Travel Guide strongly suggests that visitors do not underestimate Ecuador. One of the most common travel mistakes is people assuming it is really all about the amazing and world-famous Galapagos Islands (which we’ll cover in a separate guide). In truth, the mainland country is incredibly varied and a fascinating destination entirely in its own right.

You’ll find some incredible experiences in this destination and it’s refreshingly rare to feel like you’re really setting a bit off the beaten track when exploring the more far-flung corners. Those who enjoy independently-minded travel will quite frankly adore Ecuador.

Woman dancing at a festival in Ecuador
Woman dancing at a festival in Ecuador

What Are the Best Things to Do in Ecuador?

We’ve covered most of the essential activities while talking about the best spots to visit, and truth be told you’ll be free to spend your time pretty much anyhow you wish during your time in Ecuador. Much will depend on how much time you have. We’re not remotely exaggerating by saying that 4 weeks ought to be considered the minimal length of time to see all four corners of the country (cities, Andes, jungle, coastline) in any kind of real detail. Annoyingly, it is also one of those places where you’ll kick yourself after for missing any of these four essentials!

If we had to whittle the time down realistically we’d suggest you choose what kind of vacation/travel experience you’re looking for before you travel. If you want action, adventure, unmissable sights and so forth then make sure to spend some time in the jungle and the mountains. The national parks are incredible but if we had to sacrifice one element it’d be those (under heavy duress!).

If you plan instead for something a little more laid back then you can quite easily take day tours to some amazing locations from the major towns, and also not need to travel much distance to enjoy those long and tranquil beaches either. Perhaps Ecuador’s greatest strength is that it really does cater for pretty much anyone’s optimum travel experience. If you look then you will find!

Our advice when it comes to the jungle would be to adopt as ecologically-minded an approach as possible. Look to stay mostly in the eco-lodges (pricy but worth it) and alternatively in bunkhouses run by the locals. A good river tour should last most of a day and often stretch into the night. All the best tours – especially those run by conservation agencies – will have expert guides who will make sure you are looking at the right parts of the canopy (and to keep your arms in the boat at all times!).

While the natural ecology is mindblowing make sure to also take any opportunity to see Incan sites dotted quite haphazardly around the country. Many of these are basically left entirely untended – and it is really amazing to see iconic sites that haven’t been spoilt by the addition of huge visitor centers!

The mountains are amazing for photography and the Ecuadorian mist can add a layer of timeless quality to those who like to add an edge of mystery to their landscapes. We’d suggest taking a mixed approach to traveling over these regions. Minibusses and trains are fine and well but you’ll be well served by considering biking tours and some hiking over certain stretches. The more variety you add to your adventure the more memorable it’ll be. Adopt that kind of mindset to your stay in Ecuador and you cannot really go wrong.

Check out our Ultimate Galapagos Travel Guide for a more detailed look at what delights you’ll find out there. It ain’t the easiest place in the world to visit but if you get it right then you’ll simply never forget it.

When is The Best Time to Visit Ecuador?

Ecuadorian official visitor numbers lean more towards guesswork than reliable figures but we’d estimate that around 70-80% of people visit over the June-September period. High season can make it essential to book good hotels/hostels well in advance, but the generally warm/hot climate over these months (interspersed with occasional downpours) makes it a good time to see the mainland. It won’t be quite peak season around the coasts but for most visitors that’ll likely be a good thing!

If you are worried about the humidity and heat then later in the year – say October/November – can be considerably cooler with a heightened chance of rain. In our opinion this is a good option for those looking to spend plenty of time in the jungle – just remember that the rain can last for days at a time.

Between December and May is when Ecuador hits a serious low season. It is a poor time to visit the Galapagos – our very rough estimate would suggest about 20-25% of visitors to Ecuador do so) – and wetter than usual through the Oriente after Eastertime which tends to put many people off. We’d only recommend this time of year if you are looking more towards the higher peaks and city life.

Do I Need A Tourist Visa in Ecuador?

Ecuador is pretty straightforward to visit and most travelers will encounter very few issues. Expect longer waits at land borders if entering from another country, while usually international arrivals will barely have their passport scanned in the slightest. You do need to make sure your passport is valid for at least six months and should also bear in mind that visitors are legally obliged to carry their ID at all times. Many don’t bother (photocopies are technically not valid alternatives) but that’s up to you.

The good news is that the majority of visitors are eligible to stay visa-free for up to 90 days and will have their passports stamped upon arrival. Expect this to apply to everyone apart from most African countries, China, and a handful of others. The bad news is that visa extensions are a real headache and usually refused unless you have a business or educationally sponsored reason for needing them. Fines for overstaying without a watertight excuse can be significant.

As with most countries in the region you are expected to be able to prove onward/return travel arrangements and subsistence funds for your stay in Ecuador (measured at a modest $20/day). It is almost unheard of this being applied to anyone but you should still be aware of it.

Alpacas at the Pasochoa volcano, Ecuador
Alpacas at the Pasochoa volcano, Ecuador

What Currency Is Used in Ecuador?

Ecuador – rather handily – currently uses the USD.

Ecuador generally offers fantastic value for visitors. We’ll look at budgets shortly, but this is indeed the kind of country where you can make a little go a long way – and enjoy some fantastic experiences at bargain rate prices.

Looking more at the practical side of things, you’ll be able to find places to change Euros and the currencies of bordering countries but anything else can be very difficult indeed. Try and change money (if you need to) in the major banks for generally very reasonable rates.

Cash is essential in Ecuador although you’ll find a perhaps surprising number of places in towns/cities now accept card payments (4 digit Chip & PIN only!). ATMs are widespread and actually often cheaper to use than credit cards which tend to apply an additional 5-10% surcharge most of the time.

Haggling is a fair game pretty much anywhere and literally expected at markets. Our advice is to haggle up – say you’ll pay a little more if they throw in another trinket/scarf/whatever – instead of arguing down. Remember there are strict restrictions on what can be exported from the country in regards to antiquities.

Do I Tip In Ecuador?

You should be ready to tip quite widely in Ecuador. 10% is about right for restaurants/cafes and remember you’ll also be expected to tip your tour guides on top of the expedition/excursion costs (around $5-10/day). Prices are reasonable enough for this only to really be an issue for those on the tightest budgets. Try and leave change on notes for cabs/street food vendors/etc as while it is not expected it’ll sure be appreciated.

What Kind Of Budget Do I Need In Ecuador?

Mainland Ecuador is very budget-friendly and even visitors used to bargain-basement lodgings and meals will probably be tempted to loosen the purse strings a little. You shouldn’t need to spend much more to upgrade from a basic hostel to a comfortable small hotel room or splash out a little more to eat and drink to your heart’s content.

The drawback here is that savings are considerably offset by the fact that the Galapagos is not cheap to visit. For a point of comparison, a multiple-day tour along the Amazon will cost about $200 or so – including meals and accommodation. It’ll be at least that per day to visit the Galapagos. The same is true with all of the very high-end experiences on the mainland. Top eco-lodges can and do charge over $150/night!

While 90% of visitors can enjoy a magnificent time exploring this rich country without breaking the bank, it is important to be aware of that sudden leap upwards. With that in mind, here’s an approximate breakdown of what you should expect to spend on three very broad budget tiers:

Budget ($30-40/day)

You’ll have no problem finding somewhere to stay for rock bottom prices – although remember that the best hostels (especially around the coast) book out far in advance. Allow for no more than $20/night and you’ll be fine providing you’re OK with sharing hostel dorms. Meals are staggeringly cheap – and it is no exaggeration to say that with a combination of self-catering, street food, and the occasional sit-down meal – you’ll be easily capable of getting by on $10/day.

As the majority of museums and galleries charge at most a token admission fee, you’ll be looking to spend most of the rest of your budget on tours and transport. Getting around is pretty reasonable by bus (if often time-consuming) and tours can usually be as little as $5 for a city walking expedition or around $40/day for an all-inclusive jungle trip spread over 4+ days. Shop around and check out local advertising at your hostel. Hostels are handy for sharing tips with other visitors and no more so than when it comes to tour guide recommendations!

Mid-Level ($70-100/day)

Besides a modest upgrade in accommodation (basic comfortable hotel for about $50/night) and superior upscale dining ($15-20/person), you’ll be looking at spending that excess on more specialized tours. Strange as it may sound those premium-grade jungle lodges can fall within this price bracket as they usually include all meals and throw in excursions/activities too. Once again – pick these carefully and factor in that those which offer organized transfers from cities can be quite handy despite the additional expense.

Other day tours are going to hit around the $50-100 mark depending on the activity and equipment involved. For example, a morning surf lesson will be around $20 while a day bird watching can hit $50+ as it requires transportation too.

In the experience of the Ultimate Ecuador Travel Guide team, most visitors will float between the ‘budget’ and ‘mid-level’ tiers depending on where they find themselves during their stay in the country. You will find days where you struggle to spend over $20 – perhaps while hiking the Andes or lounging on a tropical beach – and others when you’ll be hitting the $100 mark when taking those once in a lifetime adventure tours.

High-End ($150+)

How many ‘+’ you wish to add at the end of the 150 is entirely up to you and your bank manager! High-end Ecuador is a different world to what the majority of visitors will experience and prices can become eye-watering expensive. We’re not discussing the Galapagos too much here – see the separate guide for that in greater detail – but tours around the fabled islands are neither cheap or really the sort of thing you want to do when worrying about your cash flow.

You’ll need to factor in those prices over multiple days and appreciate that the islands are so diverse that it can be a good idea to try and specialize a little according to your personal interests. Book in advance for good savings and consider visiting at the edges of the season (especially when the schools have restarted in North America and Europe).

Tungurahua volcano explosion on february 2014 at night - ultimate ecuador travel guide
Tungurahua volcano explosion on February 2014 at night

What Languages Are Spoken in Ecuador?

Spanish is the administrative and ‘official’ language of the country although you’ll frequently find that people speak one of ten additional local languages depending on where you go. As with many other South American countries spoken Spanish can be heavily accented (and varies by region) although you’ll get along fine with just a few basic words and phrases.

You’ll likely be surprised by how widely spoken English can be in Ecuador (many have relatives in the USA or have visited/lived there themselves) but don’t count on it outside of the major cities or the more visited regions. Some Spanish is certainly an advantage but it will likely not pose as big an issue as many people presume.

What Religions Are Practiced in Ecuador?

Once again the rather unreliable Ecuadorian national statistics would have you believe that the vast majority of people are practicing Roman Catholics – and the reality is somewhat different. In many ways, Christianity does play a significant cultural role, but it has also accommodated many aspects of traditional indigenous religions too. It is worth keeping an eye out for these as the crossover is really quite compelling.

You’ll have no difficulty finding a church to visit and equally be under no obligation whatsoever to attend! We at the Ultimate Ecuador Travel Guide suggest you dress appropriately for visiting any religious site especially the major cathedrals. Ecuadorians are big on personal respect and very tolerant towards visitors/outsiders – so make sure to reciprocate that where necessary.

Green-crowned Brilliant, Heliodoxa jacula, green bird from Costa Rica flying next to beautiful red flower with clear background, nature habitat, action feeding scene - Ecuador travel guide
Green-crowned Brilliant, Heliodoxa jacula, a green bird from flying next to beautiful red flower with a clear background, nature habitat, action feeding scene

Practical Tips From The Ecuador Travel Guide

Hopefully, you’ll so far have enjoyed reading the Ecuador Travel Guide and we’ll now focus a little more on the practicalities involved with experiencing a straightforward, enjoyable, and hassle-free visit to this amazing destination. This country is rightly famous for its amazing colonial-style cities, adventure activities, and frankly jaw-dropping beauty, but as with many emerging economies there’s some turmoil beneath the tranquil surface.

You do get a real feeling that this country is jostling between the inevitable damage that exploiting natural resources will exact on that famed beauty, while also how much it could – theoretically – help improve the economic prospects of the country’s many poor.

Oil is a big talking point in Ecuador and you’ll likely be surprised that many people take a dim view of some conservation efforts that seek to stymie economic growth by protecting threatened areas. From an outsider’s perspective, it may well seem crazy that people are actively promoting trashing their own backyard, but then very few visitors will have much experience of living in a $6000/year country. It is a tough line to wrap one’s head around – just remember that even though the country is largely fantastic value for visitors you’ll still be spending way beyond what most locals do on an average day.

It is interesting – and some may say an essential time – to visit mainland Ecuador as only tourism income is likely going to help prevent that industrial development from speeding towards unmanageable levels. Many in the country feel that providing they maintain the moneyspinning Galapagos alone then they’ll still be ‘doing their bit’ for environmental protection – despite the blatant fact that the rest of the country is staggeringly diverse and in many ways rather unique in its own right.

What About Health and Safety in Ecuador, Is It Safe?

Ecuador is a relatively safe country – although you ought to take some sensible precautions in certain areas. Crime does happen in the major cities, driving standards leave something to be desired, there is a veneer of casual racism/sexism in some cultural aspects, and needless to say, there are environmental hazards associated with the altitude and tropics.

All that being said most visitors who take care and follow the basic rules – avoid public intoxication, use money belts, don’t carry valuables, watch out for luggage, avoid drugs for instance – ought to be perfectly fine. There are parts of the jungle and Colombian border that are out of bounds – but seeing as nobody will take you there any way that isn’t really a major problem!

Taking the right tours is a sensible way of making sure you are looked after during your stay in Ecuador. You could ‘go solo’ and still likely not experience any trouble, but the fact is that expert guides not only improve the experience but also watch your back. Ecuadorians know and appreciate the money that tourism brings into the country and most will not look to rip you off or steal. A slightly thicker than usual skin is handy to have when visiting anywhere in this region but don’t let it desensitize you to the fact that the overwhelming majority of people are well-intentioned.

As for health – you should make sure you have comprehensive insurance before visiting Ecuador and ensure that it covers any more extreme activities that you plan (or may end up doing). Medical care is OK in the major cities but paltry elsewhere, and that extends to pharmacies. Try and take a reserve stock of any essential medications as you’ll unlikely be able to have the same brand reissued within the country if you lose them. Store copies of your medical notes and scripts securely online and carry physical copies.

The list of potential risks for visiting Ecuador is enormous – and includes everything from dengue fever through to altitude and heat sickness. Read up on these beforehand so you know what to look out for and take the latest vaccination advice before travel. Truth be told – providing you look after your physical wellbeing within the country and take those basic precautions – you’ll likely not have any health issues anyway.

Just avoid drinking tap water and make sure to try and use only the busiest street food vendors (higher turnover = fresher). Remember that plenty of hostels/hotels provide purified water so refill your bottles and make sure you drink constantly throughout the day.

Night scene of Plaza Grande (Plaza de la Independencia) in Quito, Ecuador featuring Carondelet Palace (Palacio de Carondelet), the seat of Ecuador government.
Night scene of Plaza Grande (Plaza de la Independencia) in Quito, Ecuador featuring Carondelet Palace (Palacio de Carondelet), the seat of Ecuador government.

What is the Best Transportation in Ecuador?

Buses and waterways are without question the handiest and most interesting ways of seeing Ecuador. Once you have figured out the haphazard timescales and ‘interesting’ variety of options available, chances are that against all odds you’ll be rather taken by the Ecuadorian bus system. They go absolutely everywhere, stop seemingly at random (sometimes for a little group prayer), are cheap, convenient, and usually quite cheery.

Take along some bags of treats to share out with your other passengers if you fancy earning some easy ‘ingratiation points’. Just keep an eye on your luggage and keep valuables/essentials in your daypack rather than in packed away bags.

Trains are solely for the tourist industry in Ecuador. They will take you on some amazing journeys, with the problem being that you’ll almost always end up back where you started! They’re a great option for a casual day out – and offer some amazing views along the way – but don’t plan on making them the cornerstone of your travel plans.

If you do need to get around the country quickly and safely, then the internal flight system is surprisingly good and again refreshingly cheap. Tickets tend to be around $100-150 one-way pretty much anywhere besides the Galapagos.

Something you’ll likely encounter at some stage of your travels – especially if you head to more far-flung areas – are Ranchera (sometimes known as Chiva) buses. These are basically local’s trucks that also take passengers – usually sat on their backpacks on the open trailer. Costs range from nothing whatsoever to a few dollars depending on where you are heading. It is one of the iconic little features of this country that tends to stick!

What Are the Best Accommodations in Ecuador?

Your tour of Ecuador can be as casual or organized as you deem fit. It is a decent option for backpackers not only because there are loads of places to stay for cheap, but also because it’s a handy way of sharing experiences and advice as you go. If you want to approach the country in a non-linear fashion and without much of a set itinerary then hostels can be very useful indeed. Be aware that the popular hostels do book out far in advance and prices can not deviate much from what you’d pay for a basic hotel room in some parts at certain times of the year.

Hotels come in all shapes and sizes – although you’ll find far few ‘chain style’ motels compared to many other parts of South America. Everything from B&Bs through to jungle bunkhouses and beachside cabins is there for the taking and prices tend to rarely hit stratospheric levels unless you’re going for the really exclusive end of the market. Remember that many tours – and this is a country where they can really help visitors open up their experiences – will or can include designated places to stay. For the variety alone they are often worth including in the price.

In the opinion of the Ecuador Travel Guide visitors should approach their accommodation with as open a mind as possible. Factor in that a combination of hostels, hotels, cabins and more will add extra variety to this already incredibly diverse country. You may wish to try checking out private online listings for places to stay or even look at options provided by conservation charities that employ local workers.

View of stalls in traditional craft market, Ecuador
View of stalls in the traditional craft market, Ecuador

How Can I Practice Responsible Tourism in Ecuador?

The Galapagos are a wonder of the world and rightly deserve the protection and adulation that they receive – but allied with that fact is the sense that not much is really done to protect the rest of Ecuador’s amazing natural wonders. It is actually quite difficult not to be some form of a responsible visitor by simply making the effort to enjoy these lesser-visited areas.

The vast majority of tourist infrastructure belongs to and is operated by local people, so while you ought to still make sure that your tourist money is heading towards non-corporate interests, it is not exactly difficult to do so. Remember that those little additional expenses – the daily tips for your guides are a good example – literally put foods on tables. While haggling is indeed the norm factor in that it might not always be the responsible thing to do if the difference is just an odd dollar or two.

Do your best to take some interest in Ecuadorian culture. Many visitors are understandably blown away by natural delights, but the unique aspects of living in this country can be just as fascinating – and rewarding in different ways. Use the fact that many Ecuadorians have a good grasp of English to get to know the local’s opinions on matters.

What Food Should I Try In Ecuador?

Just like the country’s geography and climate, Ecuadorian cuisine tends to be highly diverse. You’ll enjoy fresh from the water seafood around the coasts and hearty stews up in the Andes, with pretty much everything else on offer in-between. More adventurous carnivores may be tempted to try Cuy (Guinea Pig) often served alongside a Librollo (tripe) or perhaps head back towards the middle ground with a hearty plate of Llapingachos – an egg and chorizo cross between a stew and omelet.

You’ll have no trouble eating very well and affordably throughout Ecuador, although those with food intolerances and restricted diets may want to veer towards the ‘safer side’ of menu choices. Vegetarians will find plenty of variety although you may find that these tend to be a mish-mash of sides more often than not. Ecuadorian meals tend to focus on a central animal/fish protein with secondary dishes. Veganism is not a well understood or catered for concept outside of the cities and some eco-resorts.

What Should I Pack for A Trip to Ecuador?

Make sure you pack suitable clothing that is appropriate for the regions you will be visiting. Lightweight jungle outfits may not cut it up on the mountains or look especially fashionable on the beach! In all seriousness, it’s a sensible idea to pack a good quality medical kit that includes hand sanitizer and disinfectants. Invest in high quality and reliable insect repellant, and a money belt is also a sensible precaution.

The team at the Ecuador Travel Guide would also recommend that you pack a good waterproof poncho and a hat to provide additional shade and sometimes warmth. Clothing is easy to find in Ecuador but you’ll struggle with replacing high-end outdoor wear, at least within reasonable costs. Remember a power adaptor and a portable battery pack are also handy additions if your travels are taking you deep into the wilderness/jungle.

What Clothes Should You Wear In Ecuador?

Our best advice is to dress practically for your time in Ecuador and perhaps try your best not to stand out too much as a tourist. A smarter set of clothing for an upmarket night out or when visiting relics/ancient sites/religious destinations is also sensible. Overall, nobody will especially care about how you dress providing it is not too offensive or revealing.

One word of advice for female visitors would be to anticipate some degree of casual chauvinism from some Ecuadorian men. It is hardly unique to this country – it’s something you’ll find in most of South America – but you may feel more comfortable keeping a bit more covered up than usual in some parts of the country.

What Are Some Interesting & Important Facts About Ecuador?

We’re almost at the end of this Ecuador Travel Guide and hope you have found this to be an enjoyable and entertaining read! Ecuador is a fantastic country that really rewards visitors who like to keep an open and more adventurous mind. From the spectacular natural beauty through the rich and colorful animal and sea life, you’ll find that not many other countries pack so much into a relatively small space.

While the Galapagos tends to hog much of the limelight don’t for a moment think that there’s not plenty else to see in this tremendous country – it is one of those places you’ll be wanting to return to for sure!

Let’s conclude the Ecuador Travel Guide with a few interesting (non-Galapagos!) related facts about this amazing country.

▸ While bananas are the most famous export (23%) today oil is the most valuable (40%).

▸ Mt Chimborazo is technically 1.5 miles higher than Mt Everest if measuring from the center of the earth.

▸ Marriage and ‘Free Union’ enjoy exactly the same legal rights and protections with the latter simply not requiring a service.

▸ Voting is compulsory between 18 and 65.

▸ Look out for the ‘mutable rain frog’ in the Amazon. It can change texture as well as color (and we have no idea how).

▸ Nature’s Rights are recognized in the Ecuadorian constitution (largely to protect the Galapagos).

▸ 40% of adults do not have a bank account.

▸ The Panama hat was originally designed and worn in Ecuador.

▸ In Quito water boils at 90 degrees instead of 100 because of the altitude.

▸ They abolished the death penalty back in 1906.

We hope you enjoyed reading the Budget Ecuador Travel Guide – and good travels! Contact us with any questions you may have about travel to Ecuador.


Now that you have read about Ecuador, what’s next? Let’s learn more about a Chile trip. Check out The Ultimate Chile Travel Guide


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