Ever wondered what it’s like in the middle of the world?
The paradise of Ecuador is your answer!
Situated exactly on the equatorial line, Ecuador offers perfect climates and the best of all worlds. Climb mountains 6.000 meters above sea-level in the highland, relax with a fresh coconut on the tropical beaches, canoe alongside pink dolphins in the Amazon Jungle or swim with sea-lions on the Gálapagos Islands.
Ecuador is a country of spectacular biodiversity. From the biological wonder Galápagos to the height of the Andes and the unique Amazon jungle. All you need is Ecuador!
Population: 16,62 million (2017)
Area: 283,560 Km²
Biodiversity: Ecuador has one of the world’s highest biodiversity indices when measured pr. Km2 in the world.
Regions: Ecuador consists of 4 regions: Andes highland, Pacific coast, Amazon basin and the Galápagos Islands.
Language: Ecuador’s official language is Spanish. Some ethnic groups also speak Kichwa (the language of the Incas ). English is spoken in main touristic cities.
Religion: Roman Catholic
Local time: GMT/UCT minus 5 hours on Mainland Ecuador; and minus 6 hours in the Galápagos Islands.
Voltage: 110 volts, 60 cycles AC. Most outlets are for two flat prongs (like in the US).
Capital: Quito with 1.62 million inhabitants at 2,850 meters of altitude.
Calling code: +593
Visa: check with your local Embassy if a Visa is required for travelling through Ecuador.
Personal documents: Bring your passport and keep the immigration entry form delivered when you enter the country (you may need it for departure). We recommend you make copies of all your documents and leave originals at your hotel. You don´t need passport to circulate through mainland. Original Passport is required for entry to the Galapagos Islands.
Currency: Ecuador’s currency is the US Dollar. There are currency exchange offices in the main cities. It is recommended to have small value bills ($20, $10, $5). $50 and $100 bills are not accepted in most businesses. It is often difficult for people to have change, so make sure to always have coins and small bills. In the smaller towns you won’t be able to find ATM’s so make sure to withdraw a sufficient amount while you are in the big cities. The Galápagos Island “Isabela” does not have ATM’s so make sure you withdraw on the other islands before coming here.
Tips: It is tradition to give tips in Ecuador. In restaurants the norm is to tip 10% of the bill. It is also tradition to tip the guides and you should count on approximately 90-100 dollars of tips to the guide.
Credit cards: Most hotels, restaurants and shops accept Visa, MasterCard, Diners Club and American Express. Traveller Checks are not common to be accepted in Ecuador. Small shops generally don’t accept credit cards.
Water: The tap water in Ecuador is fine for locals to drink, but we ask our foreigner guests to not drink the tap water as it contains different bacteria and will make you sick. On our trips you will be given a drinking-bottle each, which you can fill up from our own clean water source that will be provided. In that way we avoid single-use plastic bottles.
Safety: Ecuador is a safe country overall but we recommend as in any large city, not to carry valuable objects, large amounts of money or jewelry. Take only a copy of your passport.
Andes: Due to its proximity to the equator, the temperature in Ecuador varies greatly. Instead of having seasons, the climate is either in the rainy or dry season. There are extreme temperature fluctuations during the day, especially in the mountain valleys. After a cool, often sunny morning, the temperatures rise until noon. In the afternoon it rains mainly from November to May, and in the evening cools down. In one day the temperature can vary from 7 to 22 °C.
On our mountain-climbing trips we can go all year round. But the best months are from November to mid-March. In the end of July and in August the winds are very strong which decrease our success rates for climbing. Therefore it is optimal to climb outside of these two months.
In the mountains above 4.600 meters the day temperature is around 14-15 °C and 0-5 °C at night. Above 5.000 meters the temperatures during the climb (in the night) will be around -5 °C and on the top it will be around -15 °C.
Pacific Coast: The coastal lowlands are tropical, warm and humid throughout the year with average temperatures of 25 °C. May to December is the dry season. January to April is the warmer and rainy season with high humidity.
Amazon Rainforest: The rainforest is the most humid area of the country with high rainfall throughout the year (2000-3000 mm). Temperatures are around 30°C. There are hot days and cool nights. We recommend wearing light clothes and always wear insect repellant.
Galápagos Islands: The climate in the Galapagos Islands is hot all year round. There are only two season – dry season and rain season. In the rain season you are still guaranteed many hours of sunshine. December-May is rain season, but also the hottest season and June-December is the dry season. In the dry season it is around 25 °C in the day time, while in the rain season it will be around 30 °C.