The beautiful city of Cuenca, founded in 1557, has a tremendous amount of architectural charm, while just an hour away is El Cajas National park, one of the most stunning areas of wilderness in Ecuador. Add the Inca ruins at Ingapirca and you have plenty of reasons to visit this region!
Reasons to visit Cuenca and the Southern Highlands include:
The climate here varies little year-round, though it does have a rainy season, March to June. July through December tends to be driest, but rain can will arrive without much warning at any time throughout the year.
Hotel Carvallo is a colonial townhouse in the historic centre of Cuenca, with attractive rooms and pretty courtyards.
Hotel Crespo is the longest serving hotel in Cuenca and offers spacious accommodation in a convenient location for exploring the city.
Mansion Alcazar is an elegant hotel offering colonial charm and decor and modern facilities in the centre of historic Cuenca.
Santa Lucia Hotel is a beautifully restored town house in the historic centre of Cuenca.
Time: GMT -5 hours
There is an international airport at Quito and at Guayaquil. KLM and Iberia have routes via Europe to both cities. The flying time is about 14 hours. It is also possible to fly via America.
Language: Spanish is Ecuador's official language.
Not required for British travellers. Other nationalities should obtain advice from their embassy.
There are no compulsory vaccinations, except yellow fever if visiting the rainforest. Malaria prophylactics are also recommended in the rainforest.