Keeping the Kids Happy in Ecuador
Our daughter loves to be out and about, so I thought I’d share some of the things we’ve enjoyed doing together, and some of the things we would like to do in the near future. These are just a few of the highlights from here in Cuenca, Guayaquil and Salinas.
Here in Cuenca there are a lot of parks with equipment for the kids to play on. One of the largest is Paradise Park, it’s got lots of green space, a river running through it, a pond, playground equipment, a horse and buggy ride, little go-cart type cares to ride around in, and lots of other fun stuff.
Mall del Rio has a Fun Center with a bowling alley and video games. There is also a Multi-Cine where you can watch the latest movies (some in English) and a food court with Burger King and KFC. Our daughter enjoys the Play Go as well; there are lots of games there too.
Banco Central Museum has some fun displays. Our daughter likes walking through the mock indigenous homes (they don’t allow pictures to be taken inside) of the different cultural groups they have set up. But her favorite part is outside; they have gardens and an aviary. There are also Llamas grazing around the grounds.
Amaru Zoo: (update March 2013) The zoo here in Cuenca is a great place to take the kids and enjoy a morning. Read the full review: Amaru Zoo in Cuenca.
Craft stores and cafes are found all over the city. It’s fun to stop in for something sweet, and pick up a cool craft.
There is a zip line about an hour or so outside of Cuenca that sounds like a lot of fun; we hope to go within the next couple of months. And Ingapirca sounds very interesting as well; it’s about an hour and a half’s drive from Cuenca and is the largest site of Incan ruins in Ecuador. And in Giron, about an hour away there is a beautiful waterfall; it’s an easy hike for children.
In Guayaquil we really enjoyed Iguana Park. The iguanas were so thick in the trees, they actually looked like iguana fruit trees, loaded with really ripe iguanas : ). Watch out because they can slip and fall on you, one almost landed on my friends head! So get close, but not too close.
The Malecon was also nice. There are playgrounds set up along the way and places to stop for treats. A display of some sort was set up, it kind of looked like a little outside dinosaur museum, we didn’t have time to stop and check it out. At the end of the Malecon there is a restaurant with some monkeys and ostriches, a movie theater and a museum.
There is also a zoo in Guayaquil, but we haven’t gotten there yet. Hopefully next time.
Salinas is a really nice little city right on the ocean. The beach is beautiful and has all kinds of water sports to keep the kids happy. The sand is great for sandcastles, and shell hunting. It’s also fun to check out the beach jewelery sold along the malecon, and by the venders walking up and down the beach.
A water slide park is just a few blocks off the beach. And there are some nice craft stores as well. Our daughter really enjoyed having some handmade jewelery engraved for all of us, you can’t lose at $1.00 a bracelet.
There are also boat tours, and fishing excursions.
El Paseo Mall has a nice theater with the latest movies (some in English) a nice food court, and lots of fun little shops to snoop around in.