Explore Quito & the Middle of the World
Quito's colonial quarter, the largest and best preserved of South America, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore the Independence Plaza, flanked by the Cathedral, the Presidential Palace, the Municipal Building and the Archbishop's Palace. Visit the temple of La Compañía de Jesús and its awesome gilded interior. Continue on to the Monastery of San Francisco, one the of great religious buildings of the New World. Featuring an impressive façade and atrium that lead to its Baroque interior influenced by Moorish style and a winged Virgin of Quito at its main altar, it really is a sight to behold.
From central Quito your tour will take you to the Equatorial Monument, approx. 45 minutes or 16 miles north of the city, which marks the exact Middle of the World, latitude 0º, where you can stand with a foot on each hemisphere! Whilst there visit the Ethnographic Museum inside the monument, with exhibits that focus on the different regions of Ecuador and their tribes or ethnic groups. This is a great introduction for visitors going on to explore the regions and cultures of Ecuador.
Please note that visits to churches on Sundays are not allowed and museums are closed on Mondays and vacations.