Quito - old town in the day

Quito Travel Blog

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Jesus and his (last) guinea-pig!

We (me, Peter and Susie - 2 Australians I´ve met here who have worked in Oxfordshire for a couple of years!) went down to have a look around the old part of Quito in daylight hours on Friday.  In particular we visited the oldest church in S America (dating from around 1550) - San Francisco - which has a beautiful, rich decorative interior that only the Catholic tradition could permit.  No photos allowed of the inside I´m afraid, nor was I able to capture the fight between two elderly indigenous street traders that we encountered as we left!

Afterwards we visited the San Diego church and convent, and accidently agreed to what turned out to be a really interesting 45 minute tour of the whole place, including many different hidden roms.

The main statue in the central plaza in old Quito (can you guess that it was a rather gloomy day!)
  We had only headed to this place for the fampus picture of the Last Supper in which the traditional meal was replaced by a cuy - guinea pig - because that was regarded as the local delicacy at the time (and now) and the artist didn´t know any better! 

Next to the convent was one of, if not the, most interesting things I´ve seen in Quito - a cemetry.  It sounds morbid I know, but the way they bury the dead here is really interesting - they effectively build 3 storey high walls in which the dead are placed horizontaly lengthwise to make the most of the available space.  The pictures can show it better than I can explain it, but it was like walking into another world with streets lined with the final resting places of thousands of people either side.  It was so interesting I became a bit snap-happy with the camera, andf it was only when we saw a group of mourners that we remembered this was also a place of deep sadness as well as place of huge interest to visit as an outsider.

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Jesus and his (last) guinea-pig!
Jesus and his (last) guinea-pig!
The main statue in the central pla…
The main statue in the central pl…
A view of the ugly statue of the V…
A view of the ugly statue of the …
An arty shot of one of the windows…
An arty shot of one of the window…
A view of the San Diego church´s …
A view of the San Diego church´s…
A view of Quito through a window i…
A view of Quito through a window …
The cemetry in Quito
The cemetry in Quito
Three storeys of high-rise burials
Three storeys of high-rise burials
Each square is the end of where a …
Each square is the end of where a…
Susie and Peter having fun in the …
Susie and Peter having fun in the…
A view of the concrete crematorium…
A view of the concrete crematoriu…
Quito
photo by: Bluetraveler