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How to travel Ecuador

by: Martha and Leonora

In Ecuador, it is mainly buses that connect the country by land. There used to be a train connection from Guayaquil to Quito, but today all connections have been cancelled as the maintenance costs have become too high. The Nariz del Diábolo tourist attraction has also been closed, but is due to be reopened. Of course, you can also travel by plane.

However, the most popular means of transport is the bus. There are a large number of Bus companies that connect the cities with each other. In most cities, there are bus terminals where the buses stop, but depending on which bus you take, it is also possible that you will stop wherever people are queuing at the bus stop. You can usually only find out if and when the buses leave from the larger terminals. Otherwise you have to enquire locally.

Nevertheless, the buses run quite regularly and reliably. What’s more, travelling by bus here is surprisingly cheap for us when you compare it with German prices. For example, bus connections within the city (we mainly use Quito as a comparison) only cost 35 cents, no matter how far you want to travel.

In our experience, bus connections travelling outside the city cost between 3 and 15 dollars, depending on the distance. By way of comparison, our 9-hour bus journey from Quito to Manta only cost 7 dollars. But what you should bear in mind when travelling by bus: The buses don’t wait for you! If you arrive late, it’s your own fault if the bus has already left. We had to experience this for ourselves, because when we made a stopover in Riobamba, we had so much confidence in our bus that we wanted to see the town in the half hour we had left before departure.

Unfortunately, we arrived a few minutes late, but thought that the bus would be waiting for us as the driver had seen us as we were packing our bags onto the bus. Wrong thinking!

Unfortunately, the bus with our things was already on its way to Banos and we were lucky that we were able to reach the bus driver by phone and he assured us that he would drop the things off for us in Baños.

But the fast, cheap and reliable buses are not the only reason to travel. Here in Ecuador, you can be either on the coast or in the mountains in just a few hours. Wherever you want to go, you can do it. From a relaxing holiday in the thermal baths of Papallacta or a beach holiday on the coast to adventures, night hikes in the jungle, bungee jumping, rafting and railing, hikes and cultural city tours, Ecuador has everything to offer. Our recommendation: try out as much as possible! We also often wondered whether we should take a trip and whether it wouldn’t cost too much money, but in the end the experiences and memories you can make here are always worth it!

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