Quito - old town in the day
Quito Travel Blog› entry 12 of 92 › view all entries
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.
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.