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La Mariscal, Plaza Foch (1 night)

Quito Mariscal
Quito's nightlife takes place mainly in the Mariscal area. La Mariscal, which is also called Gringolandia, is located between the Colon and Patria Avenues. In this area you find many different options of entertainment like bars, clubs, coffee shops, restaurants, live music shows and much more.

Take a taxi to Plaza Foch and from there you can pick your place to hang out. For your safety, always take a yellow taxi with orange number plate, as these are the official metered taxis.

Calle de la Ronda (2 hrs)

Quito La Ronda
If you want to capture the feeling of Quito in the 1800’s, take a walk down Calle de la Ronda (meaning small alleyway). This quaint, cobblestone street covers just a couple of city blocks, easing its way up a hill edged with remembrances of Quito’s Spanish heritage, old wood doors that open to reveal a plant-filled patio, burbling fountains and thick plastered walls.

A few years ago this was a no-go area, as there were only prostitutes and criminals. After a renovation nowadays it is a lovely street with many restaurants and bars. The street really comes alive on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evening.

Heladeria San Augustina (1-2 hrs)

Quito Augustin
A very famous restaurant in the old city centre of Quito is Heladeria San Augustina. They serve wonderful fresh juices, cookies, ice cream and coffee. Of course you have to try the helados de paila, ceviche, their famous quesadilla cake and other Ecuadorian traditional delights.

You can have your breakfast there until 10:30 am and they serve great lunch dishes. Ask for the English menu if you don’t speak Spanish. The restaurant is located at Guayaquil N5-59 y Mejía.

Mercado Artisanal La Mariscal (1-2 hrs)

Quito Artesanal Mariscal
A very nice market where you can buy your gifts and souvenirs in Quito is Mercado Artesanal La Mariscal. The market is open every day from 9 am to 7pm. On Sundays it closes at 6 pm.
The market is located in de Mariscal neighbourhood, at the corner of Juan Leon Mera and Jorge Washington.

Art market at Parque el Ejido (1 hr)

Quito El Ejido
At Parque el Ejido an Art Market is held every Saturday and Sunday from 9 am to 6 pm.

The market is located at the Avenida Patria side of the park, opposite Hilton Colon hotel. It is very nearby Mercado Artisanal La Mariscal.

Centro Comercial Artesanal (1 hr)

Quito Artesanal
A very local market is Centro Comercial Artesanal. Here you will find a lot of household stuff, local foods, tailors, leather shops and much more. Perhaps it’s not a market where you should buy a lot of stuff but for sure you will get a lot of picturesque moments.

Mercado Artesenal is nearby the Basilica. If you walk downhill you will see it very soon. Go there during daytime and at this market you have to be very aware of pickpockets.

Market at Otavalo (1 day)

Quito Otavalo
A great indigenous village to go to outside Quito is Otavalo. In this village you can do your local shopping (mainly textiles) while you can enjoy great picturesque moments at Plaza de los Ponchos and many surrounding small streets.

Best day to go to this wonderful village is Saturday as there is a huge market on this day. It’s nice to be there around noon and you can leave again late afternoon. There are many market places, bars and restaurants where you can spend your time. If you like to see the animal market, you have to be there at Saturday before 10 am. This place, Plaza Animales, is a bit outside the centre, but everything is in walking distance.

You can go to Otavalo by bus from bus station Carcelen in north Quito. A taxi from downtown will bring you there in 20 minutes. The bus corporation is called Los Lagos and a single journey costs $2. (There is also an express bus but it’s only fifteen minutes faster and it stops outside Otavalo.) Driving time to Otavalo is approximately two hours. The ride through the mountains is already worth to make the trip.

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Language of the world

Of course you like to speak a few words of the local language onboard the plane or at your destination. Here you find some simple basics of the main language spoken in Quito.