Ecuador is a small country, located in western South America, bordered by the Pacific Ocean to the west, Colombia to the north, and Peru to the southeast. Although Ecuador may be small, it’s a destination that boasts diversity rich cultural heritage, delicious food, the Amazon jungle, and Andean highlands. From tropical beaches to stunning landscapes, historical towns, and indigenous markets it is the ideal place for anyone wanting to taste the best of South America. It is a country with an incredible climate, friendly locals, and outstanding nature. Read more about this amazing country, and what we suggest are the best time to visit Ecuador.
– How to visit Ecuador
The best time to visit really depends on your personal interestsand availability. Kuoda specializes in tailor-made tripsthroughout South America, and we are happy to answer anyquestions that you might have about visiting these uniqueislands. Since there are so many things to consider, it can bevery helpful to have someone professional step in. We helparrange everything for you, and you can just focus on enjoyingyourself and experiencing the best that the country has tooffer. Contact us directly and talk to one of our professionaltrip designers to start planning your trip.
– Things To Do
• In Wet Season
December to May mark the rainy season. It is a great season to visit Ecuador as it is still warm, with more clear sunny days than rainy ones. Popular activities that can be done during the rainy season are hiking, mountain biking, and spending time on the beach. Wildlife viewing is also ideal during the wet season. The rain nurtures the land, which results in lush green plant life and an abundance of food for many of the animals that live here. Marine iguanas, penguins and hatching tortoises are just a few of the animals that can be spotted on the Galapagos Islands during the wet season.
• In Dry Season
Snorkeling, scuba diving and kayaking are popular activities that can be done during the dry season. These months typically fall between June and November. It is an ideal time for scuba diving around the Galapagos Islands as the hot climate makes it more pleasant to explore the deep-sea waters, and the visibility is clear enough to see the incredible marine life that this region of the world has to offer.
– When To visit
Guayaquil is home to Ecuador’s second busiest international airport, and the other connection to the Galapagos Islands. Other than being the focus of Ecuador’s international trade and domestic commerce, it offers a variety of excursions for travelers too. Catedral Metropolitana de Guayaquil, Las Peñas, Cerro Santa Ana, Museo Presley Norton and Reserva Ecológica Manglares Churute are some of the top things to discover here. Guayaquil experiences a tropical climate in summer between March and May, when the temperature is around 30 degrees. Winter starts in mid-June and lasts till August. Even during winters, the weather does not vary hugely, with temperatures around 20 degrees. The dry season, between January and April, is ideal with warm and pleasant weather. The climate is warm all through the year, giving the town the characteristic Caribbean appeal.
The capital of Ecuador, Quito, is a place rich in culture and architectural beauty, and is one of the two connections to the Galapagos Islands. It has been named a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, and whether you’re interested in history, adventure, local food or nightlife, Quito offers fun things to do for nearly any interest. Due to its elevation and the position of the city, which is very close to the equator, the city has a constant cool climate throughout the year. There are two distinct seasons: dry and wet. The dry season (summer) runs from June to September. To skip the unpredictable showers and have more opportunities to participate in outdoor excursions, the dry season is probably the best time to visit Quito. Rainy season in Quito occurs two times during the year: March and April and then from October to December. The rainiest month tends to be April.
Mindo is a small town located in a valley northwest of Quito. Even though it is small, it offers a variety of different activities and excursions like hikes to beautiful waterfalls, ziplining through cloud forests, birdwatching, and chocolate or coffee tours. Mindo is characterized by its incredibly high altitude, which means generally cooler climates. The best time to visit is the dry winter season, from June to September, because there will be less humidity which means that it allows opportunities to participate in more outdoor excursions and it makes birdwatching and wildlife viewing much easier, compared to the rainy season.
Cuenca lies at around 2500 meters above sea level, and is the third largest city in Ecuador. Cuenca is a beautiful city known for its stunning colonial architecture in the city center, and it is also a World Heritage Site, recognized by UNESCO. Most probably, Cuenca was inhabited by the Incas, and the evidence lies in the incredible ruins that travelers can still see when visiting the city. It has a subtropical climate all year round, so it can be visited at any time. There are two main seasons: the dry season which falls between June and December, and the rainy season which falls between January and May. It is recommended to visit in the dry season for more opportunities to participate in the many outdoor excursions that this gem has to offer.
• Galapagos Islands
The rainy season, between December and May, is the best time to visit the Galapagos Islands. These weather conditions tend to be the best for wildlife viewing. The wet season is perfect for experiencing the calm waters that are ideal for outdoor adventures like hiking or kayaking. The climate is warm and wet during these months, and it usually rains in the afternoons and often clears up by evening. The dry season runs from June to November, and during these months the Humboldt Current runs north-westward along South America’s coast. It brings with it cooler temperatures and nutrient-rich water that attracts a variety of rare fish- and bird species. During this time you will find stronger winds and rougher seas.
– Best Time For
• Cruising around the Galapagos Islands
December to May are the best months to take a cruise around the Galapagos Islands. A cruise offers the best wildlife viewing experiences, as it is possible to see animals in the ocean and on land. You are guaranteed to see some beautiful creatures during a cruise. The current starts to shift as the dry season starts, and the sea conditions are not ideal during this time – especially for those that tend to get seasick. These currents are the strongest from June to September. It is also a good time to spot animals, but ideally it is not the best time for a cruise.
• Snorkeling/Scuba Diving in the Galapagos Islands
The crystal-clear waters and abundant marine life of the Galapagos Islands offer incredible snorkeling and scuba diving experiences. Animals that can be viewed during your under-water excursion are manta rays, sea turtles, sea horses, dolphins, seals, and much more. June to September are the best months for wildlife viewing underwater. A variety of marine life comes together here because of the four different ocean currents that connect around the archipelago. The strongest currents are apparent from June to September, which are ideal for snorkelers and scuba divers, because they bring with them Whale Sharks and Hammerhead Sharks
• Giant Tortoises
When arriving to the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador, expect to be pleasantly welcomed by dinosaur-like creatures emerging from the shores of the beaches. The Archipelago was named after the Galapagos Giant Tortoise. They are majestic creatures that can get up to 150 years old. The best time to see these gentle giants on the Galapagos Islands are between December and January, and then again from April to June. August is also a good month to view these beauties. This depends on the weather and the island on which they live. Hatchings usually start in December and finish in April. Migrations from the highlands to the lowlands run from December to April, and back again in June and August.
As you land in Quito, you will be surrounded with views of the spectacular Ecuadorian Andes everywhere you look. Ecuador is a hive of volcanoes, snowcapped peaks, cloud forests, and ancient Inca ruins. With so many amazing places to explore, hiking is the one of the best ways to indulge in this incredibly diverse country’s magnificence. You can go hiking in Ecuador all year round, because of its proximity to the equator. It is generally quite warm in the lowlands, while the mountains and highland regions tend to be colder, especially at nighttime. It is better to go hiking in the highlands during the dry season, which runs from June to September. During this time expect little, to no rain – which will attribute to a more memorable hiking experience.
– Best Time For
For families with children of at least six years of age, the best time to travel to Ecuador is between December and May. The rain doesn’t last long, and the weather is warm and comfortable. The water conditions in the Galapagos Islands tend to be calmer during the wet season, and there are a lot more warmer days than rainy ones. Between April and May one can see The Blue-Footed Booby mating ritual – during this magical natural event the birds mimic each other by hopping from one foot to the other. Experiences like this one promise a very memorable family vacation.
Ecuador is the ideal place for couples to experience pure romance. From December to May the weather is the most pleasant, with mostly sunny days and cool nights. This is the perfect climate for spending long days on the beach, participating in different outdoor excursions, exploring the Galapagos Islands or having romantic dinners on the beach. These warmer temperatures initiate the mating season for a lot of different animal species like turtles, sea birds, sea lions, tortoises and more. The Blue-Footed Booby mating ritual is a very special event and can mark a very memorable experience for couples visiting the islands.
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