A Canadian Family Traveling & Living Abroad (in Ecuador)

My 16 Favorite Places in Ecuador: Stuff for Kids To Do

If you’re moving to a foreign country, then what your kids are going to do there, will probably be a concern. I was a little worried about that when we moved here. What was I going to do all day (aside from school)?

Well, here are a few great places that I love to go:

Parks in Ecuador

El Ejido Park (Parque El Ejido), Quito 

parque-el-ejido-quito

parque-el-ejido-quito

Parque El Ejido is huge! At the entrance, there is a huge arch like the one in Paris, France. Half of the park has playground equipment, including…

  • A huge tube slide, it’s so long and fast! There are numerous other slides going off around it too.
  • A really fast fun zip-line. Not like one of those that you go out over a crater, just a long wire and a seat, but it’s my favorite!
  • Monkey bars and swings
  • And the other half is a running track and miles of grass. It is really pretty! There is also a nice reptile zoo nearby. It was kind of creepy; it had dim, eerie blue lights. It kind of made me feel like I was in prehistoric times! I’m the kind of girl that likes snakes, spiders and bugs so I liked it. But if you’re scared of that kind of thing, you probably shouldn’t go there.

Parque Paraíso, Cuenca

Parque Paraíso is a very big park. It has…

  • a big running track
  • a lot of fun playground equipment
  • a nice bit of green space
  • a pond with paddle boats
  • horse and buggy rides

I love going to this park with my dog Chica.

Parque de la Madre, Cuenca

Parque de la Madre is like Parque Paraíso, except smaller. It has most of the same things that Paraíso does, but they are all smaller. You can read more about my favorite parks in Cuenca.

Restaurants in Ecuador

Tutto Freddos (or Nice Cream), Cuenca and Other Places

tutto-freddos-cuenca-icecream-restaurant

Tutto Freddos is a very nice ice cream and pizza shop here in Cuenca. They have every kind of ice cream and pizza, it’s really good! They have locations at Mall del Rio and across from Parque Calderon. And many other places I don’t know of. :)

I love their pizza!!!!! My fav is Pepperoni. And my favorite ice cream is Nutella. That is a kind of hazelnut-chocolate spread that they made into an ice cream.

tutto-freddos-cuenca-icecream-flavors

Café Austria, Cuenca

Café Austria is a Gringo hangout, if you don’t mind me saying that :). It’s a really nice restaurant. I love their spaghetti! I’m not really familiar with their menu, but what I know they have…

  • Ice cream
  • Coffee, of course
  • Spaghetti
  • French fries
  • And more!

They also have WIFI so it’s a nice place to go to have lunch and hangout.

Frutilados, Cuenca

Frutilados is a nice quiet restaurant off of Parque Calderon. You can get…

  • Ice cream
  • Coffee
  • Hot chocolate
  • And more I can’t remember!

Read about the bird’s eye view of Parque Calderon from Frutilados.

Gelateria Pizzería La Fornace, Cuenca

This is a nice place to stop and have lunch. It has….

  • Pizza of course
  • Ice cream
  • Salchipapas
  • And more

They have really good pizza!

Pizza Hut, Most of Ecuador

I’m sure you have heard this one before! It’s in a lot of other countries too. And I don’t need to go over everything it has because everyone has either been there or heard about it. So, anyway, one of my fav pizza places!

Malls in Ecuador

Mall Del Sol, Guayaquil

I love Mall del Sol! It is really big. It is actually the biggest mall in the country! It has…

  • A food court (with all the food that we gringos are used to :^))
  • Mr. Books bookstore – with a nice section of English books
  • A humongous toy store
  • Adventure stores
  • Clothing stores
  • And many others

mall-del-sol-guayaquil-ecuador

mall-del-sol-guayaquil-food-court

This mall is only about a 2 minute walk from the Howard Johnson and Sheraton hotels. So if you’re just visiting than you will find it easy to visit the mall.

Mall Del Rio, Cuenca

Mall Del Rio is two floors, it’s cool! It has…

  • A super market (Coral del Rio to be specific)
  • A food court
  • A beauty shop
  • A teenage girl store called Funky Fish (which is a very strange name…)
  • A jewelry store
  • Clothing stores
  • And more!

Mall Del Rio is not as big as Mall Del Sol, but it does have a good selection.

Millennium Plaza, Cuenca

Millennium Plaza is a nice small mall. It has two levels, top is a food court. I am a sucker for ice cream, and like most the malls here it has my fav ice cream shop, Tutto Freddos (Nice Cream)! Here are some other shops it has…

  • A teenage Goth store called Pink Punk
  • A number of ice cream shops
  • A bunch of other stores :)
  • Close to Parque de la Madre

Monay Shopping, Cuenca

This is a really nice mall. It is modern and pretty. Here are some things it has…

  • Colonial furniture shop
  • Clothing stores
  • Food court
  • Gaming store
  • And of course, more that I can’t remember.

Keep in mind that the features on some of the malls mentioned here might be in the other ones too. I just can’t mention them all over and over again because that would just be boring!

Handicraft Market, Galapagos

The handicraft market in the Galapagos is a very nice place to spend a couple of hours. It has…

  • Marble turtles
  • Stuffed animals
  • Jewelry
  • And much more!
galapagos-handicrafts-market-mercado-artesanal-santa-cruz

Handicraft Market on Santa Cruz Island, Galapagos

Read more about the Galapagos Handicraft Market.

Resorts in Ecuador

Punta Centinela, Salinas

pool_condo_punta_centinela

The Pool at Punta Centinela

Punta Centinela is a beautiful vacation resort in Salinas. It has…

  • A pool
  • A private beach
  • A lot of geckoes :^)
  • And more!

It is a lovely place to go for a vacation!

Sol y Agua, Santa Isabel

This is a very nice resort in the Yunguilla valley. It has…

  • A slow, twirley water slide
  • A very fast, strait water slide
  • A pool, of course
  • Little cabins
  • A snack bar
  • And more!

If you go down that fast slide, you will want to cross your legs! I love going there for a day just to hang out and relax.

Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge

Traveling to the Galapagos is an amazing adventure that every kid will love. Read more about our recent Galapagos Family Adventure.

isabela-island-galapagos

WeeklyPhoto-Galapagos-Marine-Iguana

So, as you can see, if you move to Ecuador then your children will have lots to do! Thank you for reading! And don’t forget to check out my blog Culture Sponge and sign up for my free newsletter!

Interested in other great things for kids? Ecuador for Kids – Keeping the Kids Happy

An article by

Drew is the daughter of Bryan and Dena Haines. She moved to Ecuador when she was just 8 years old and writes on her blog: Culture Sponge. Work with GringosAbroad

More about: Cuenca Ecuador, Ecuador Travel, Living in Ecuador

{ 13 comments… add one }

  • Barbara Stiles May 19, 2014, 9:54 pm

    Thanks for a great article! I will have some neat places to take my grandson, thanks to you.

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines May 19, 2014, 10:01 pm

      So glad you enjoyed it. Let us know how he likes these places.

      Reply
  • Evangeline November 24, 2013, 10:40 am

    Hi Drew:) My favorite is Nutella too! I just wanted to tell you that next time you’re around the Parque San Blas check out the Monte Bianco Heladeria. Their Nutella is even tastier:-P

    Reply
  • Liliana April 28, 2013, 6:34 am

    Hi Drew, I`m an 8 yr old whose family is thinking about moving to Cuenca. I really like your blog and want to start my own someday.

    Do you answer when people comment? Have you made a lot of friends there? Do you miss your friends from Canada?

    Reply
  • Miriam April 22, 2013, 11:19 am

    What a great post Drew. We are so happy to have retired in Ecuador and visit a few of these places. Keep enjoying and sharing your favorite places.

    Reply
  • Bernie & Eileen Funk December 17, 2012, 5:47 pm

    Hola, great site….in particular we noted the store called “Funky Fish”. Maybe we should check it out considering our last name:))) Keep up the great work, really enjoy reading this site. We are from Canada as well. My wife is originally from Nova Scotia and I am originally from Saskatchewan. Both of lived in Alberta for a number of years before coming to Ecuador almost 2 years ago. We now have a home in Vilcabamba and are quite enjoying the wonderful weather. No snow:)))

    Reply
  • Jakob December 16, 2012, 10:18 pm

    I have to yet meet someone in Ecuador regardless of nationality who does not love Tutto Freddo. We have actually cried over finding it closed one day… no other ice cream can fill the void! They are definitely the best in our known world. In Guayaquil they are close to the Parque de las Iguanas and another one at 9 de Octubre.
    Mall del Sol is big, but expensive. We usually go for food and drinks and to the movies, but not to shop. It is also a great meeting place to get together with friends and then go from there.

    Reply
  • John Jones December 16, 2012, 2:02 pm

    Great post. The info is very helpful as I am planning a 2-3 week exploratory trip this spring. Then hopefully relocation to Ecuador. Please keep the posts coming. Thank you
    Juan Grande

    Reply
  • Juan Grande December 16, 2012, 1:57 pm

    Great info. Any and all info helps. Please keep them coming. I am planning my exploratory trip this spring and hopefully relocate shortly thereafter.
    Muchas Gracias

    Reply
  • Lisa December 16, 2012, 12:55 pm

    Hey Drew. Your article was well done again. You definitely know your surroundings, and apparently ‘love’ pizza. :) I don’t blame you. I like how your comments are to the point. A lot of info,that one can read in a short time. That’s good for today’s life style. The first time I learned about the malls and other shops in Cuenca from your parents articles, I was pleasantly surprised. I did not imagine it to be so modernized. See what education from traveling does for you! Or, since someone as myself hasn’t visited Ecuador, I can gain more knowledge from your experiences. So great. Keep up your skills, and I look forward to reading more. Someday I hope you can personally show me around your city. Take care.

    Reply
  • Dennis Fahey December 16, 2012, 11:03 am

    Thanks for another great post! Your comments about the everyday things–and the special things–really make the city and country come to life for us wannabe gringuadorians! Keep up the excellent work!

    Reply
  • MaryAnn December 16, 2012, 10:50 am

    Hi Drew!
    Once again you have provided some very important information about Ecuador. I am a grandma with 5 grandchildren, whom I hope will visit me when I get there. Nice to have a list of things for them to do.

    And for me too. I love parks and playgrounds, especially water parks.

    I have a question for you, I have dogs who like to go just about everywhere with me, except malls, so are dogs allowed in the parks you listed?

    Keep up the good work!

    Reply
  • Joe Durr December 16, 2012, 10:06 am

    Nice photos..EVERYTHING helps give a better and warmer vision of what our new life will be like. Thank you once again…..merry Christmas ! And a healthy new year…

    Reply

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About Bryan & Dena Haines

We are a Canadian family of 3 living in Ecuador since 2009. We blog about life and travel in Ecuador. If this is your first visit, start here. Interested to work with us? Read more about Bryan & Dena

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