Saturday, May 06, 2006

images of ecuador, part i

have been in ecuador for over a week now, crossing the border in the south from peru. have been to loja, vilcabamba, cuenca, the nariz del diablo (devil's nose) train ride where you sit on the roof, riobamba, and now banos. a lot less gringos here than in other parts of south america, which has been a nice respite from the typical tourist trail.
ecuador is pretty green and lush, with lots of pastoral rolling hillsides, and down the middle of the country is the avenue of volcanoes. perfect cones of volcano goodness. east is jungle, west is coast. it seems like it'll rain everyday, and sometimes it even does. that's probably why it's really green. here be some images that i've taken so far:
- vilcabamba: if you ever go here, there's a great place to stay, el jardin escondido (the hidden garden). great garden setting, hammocks, good food, great staff. did a hike outside of town and here's a donkey at the start of the trail

and waterfalls at the end

there was also a church in vilcabamba with neon lights, first one i've seen outside of vegas

and in case you were wondering who provides light

- cuenca: pretty colonial town with UNESCO heritage status. here's the main cathedral

here's the stained glass from the inside

here's the aisle

here's a big statue of the pope when you enter

also in cuenca, this is the most sterile looking market i've ever seen.

outside of cuenca are the inca ruins of ingapirca. they're pretty tame in comparison to ruins like machu picchu that you'd see in peru

but the staff working the door are more interesting


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