First time in Quito - first impressions

Quito Travel Blog

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Pretty scenery at Mitad del Mundo.
I flew into Quito at about 8:00pm. The landing was very hard (I'm told this is normal due to the altitude and short runway). Customs and migration were a breeze compared to Colombia, which was no joke. I was out in about 15 minutes tops, including the walk from the plane to customs.

I Immediately meet a gringo from Canada who wanted to share a cab. Keep in mind this is the first fellow gringo I've actually spoken to in 5 days, as there were pretty much none in Medellin. However he was going to new town and I was going to old town so we said safe travels and went on our separate ways.

I purchaced a voucher inside the airport. The guidebooks are a little out of date because it cost $15 not $7.
Obligatory picture at the "real" mitad del mundo.
However still well worth it because that way you have your driver meet you right there rather than have to fight the madhouse just outside of the airport doors.

Arrived at the hotel to find a very nice old mansion that was converted to a hotel with a couple of resturaunts and shops on the street level. I'm in the heart of old town which is absolutely beautiful. Lots of small shops selling everything from alpaca clothing to dress clothes to chicken/pork rice dishes. And I can walk to the corner and see the bastillia in one direction and el panecillio (sp?) in the other. Very pretty.

Last night I met another American from Utah at the hotel. I ran into him this morning and after talking to him I ended up tagging along with him, his friend and a girl from Boston to el mitad del mundo.
Rainstorm in old town Quito
We went to both parks, the original and the "real" one. The real one was acually much better since it included a full tour by an English speaking ecuadorian.

Then, the girl decided to go see some nearby ruins. The rest of us hopped a bus back to town. We made it to northen Quito to this really large and modern mall. I decided to go check it out while everyone else hopped a cab back to old town to meet a friend coming in this afternoon.

My main purpose for going to the mall was to find a Quito futbol jersey. Found them at a store called Marathon, and discovered that they are alot cheaper here than in the USA. However I didn't have enough on me so I hopped a cab back to old town. I'm going to get that jersey before I leave though.

Then I spent the afternoon wandering old town. A protest broke out at plaza municipal, and I walked the other way when I saw riot police coming in.

Got a lunch plate of chicken, salad and potatoes for about $2. There are tons of cheap and good eateries around old town.

Tomorrow: el panecillo, teleferico and hopefully finding some cuy!
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Pretty scenery at Mitad del Mundo.
Pretty scenery at Mitad del Mundo.
Obligatory picture at the real m…
Obligatory picture at the "real" …
Rainstorm in old town Quito
Rainstorm in old town Quito
Quito
photo by: Bluetraveler