Planning a trip to Quito Ecuador is exciting. It’s a large city and there’s a lot to see. In this post you’ll get an overview of the top Quito Ecuador tourist attractions.
Photo credit Around The World 4k
These locations and activities will give you a taste of the culture and natural beauty of the city.
Explore Quito Ecuador’s Attractions
These Quito Ecuador tourist attractions are something to get excited about. You’ll see what I mean as you watch this visual tour of Quito.
Visual tour of Quito Ecuador
What a gorgeous city! Now, let’s look at specific locations so you can enjoy the best of what Quito has to offer.
Best Places To Visit In Quito Ecuador
All the locations covered in this post will be within walking distance or a short taxi ride from your Quito hotel.
There are some attractions outside the city that you probably won’t want to miss. Like the popular Otavalo market and Quilotoa Lake (a water-filled caldera). But we’ll cover Quito day trips in another post.
Let’s get started with the 6 best tourist attractions in Quito Ecuador.
Top 6 Quito Ecuador Tourist Attractions
Here’s a quick list of the top 6 places to visit in Quito:
- Quito’s Old Town: Best preserved old town in the Americas
- Mitad del Mundo / Middle of the Earth: Where the Northern and Southern hemispheres meet.
- TelefériQo (Cable Car up Pichincha Volcano): A view of the city from 4,100 meters (13,500 feet)
- Museo de la Ciudad / City Museum of Quito: History of the city in a UNESCO world heritage site housed in a gorgeous 16th-century building
- Mercado Artesanal La Mariscal / Mariscal Artisan Market: Largest artisan market in Quito with a wide variety of artisan products.
- Parque Itchimbia / Itchimbia Park: Large park with wonderful views of the city and a Cultural center.
Now we’ll take a closer look at each location.
1) Visit Quito’s Old Town
This is a must if you want to see colonial architecture. Quito has the best preserved old town in the Americas (at least that’s its reputation); the buildings are impressive and the plazas are gorgeous.
But if you stay in a modernized part of the city, you could miss this altogether.
La Ronda (in the old town) should be at the top of your list if you have limited time. La Ronda is said to be the oldest and best-preserved street in Quito. The streets decorated with flowerpots, flags and little balconies.
Photos of La Ronda in Quito’s old town.
Here you’ll get a taste of colonial charm and experience the culture of old town Quito. There are lots of cafes, shops, restaurants, and street vendors.
In this video you’ll see what the atmosphere is like at this top Quito attraction.
La Ronda Quito Video
The old town also includes beautiful plazas like Plaza San Fransico and Plaza de la Independencia. You’ll also find the Artisan market Tianguez.
Address of La Ronda – Juan de Dios Morales, Quito 170150, Ecuador
2) Mitad del Mundo / Middle of the Earth
Mitad del Mundo is where the Northern and Southern hemispheres meet, it’s right on the Equator. Visitors love to straddle the yellow line which puts them in two hemispheres at the same time.
This is Mr. Popular when it comes to Quito Ecuador tourist attractions.
In the following video you’ll see Mitad del Mundo and the surrounding area.
Video of Mitad del Mundo Quito Ecuador
There is an interesting story that goes with this popular spot. The location in the above video is not the true middle of the earth. Geographically speaking it’s close, but latitude 0°0‘0’’ is actually a few hundred meters north of this monument at the Intiñan Museum.
Although some say neither location is exactly correct. At the Intiñan museum, you’ll be a little closer to the real thing.
Here is a little tour of the Intiñan museum.
Intiñan Museum, the Real Middle of the Earth video
Address of Mitadad del Mundo – Autopista Manuel Cordova Galarza, San Antonio de Pichincha, Quito 170180, Ecuador.
Address of Intiñan Museum – Autopista Manuel Cordova Galarza, 200 meters from the roundabout at Mitad del Mundo San Antonio de Pichincha, Quito 170180, Ecuador.
3) TelefériQo/The Cable Car Up Pichincha Volcano
This is the best way to “see” Quito. The cable car takes you to an elevation of 4,100 meters (13,500 feet). This is South America’s highest gondola ride and one of the highest aerial lifts in the world. If the sky is clear, you’ll have breathtaking views of the city and the surrounding countryside.
It’s best to go in the morning as fog usually rolls in later on in the day. Make sure to bring a sweater or jacket because it’s often windy and cold.
Riding the TelefériQo in Quito Ecuador video
Read more about the TelefériQo.
At the base of the TelefériQu is Vulqano Fun Park. If you’ve got kids schedule in some play time after your gondola ride.
Address of El TelefériQu – Av. Occidental and Fulgencio Aruajo, Quito, Pichincha, 170120, Ecuador.
4) Museo de la Ciudad/City Museum of Quito
When you visit the City Museum you’ll immerse yourself in the history of Quito.
Here you’ll see the story of the city – from an indigenous trading post, through the Incas, the conquistadors and up into the 19th century.
This museum is a UNESCO world heritage site and is in a gorgeous 16th-century building which was the former San Juan de Dias Hospital.
Address of the Museo de la Ciudad – García Moreno, Quito 170101, Ecuador
5) Mercado Artesanal La Mariscal/ Mariscal Artisan Market
This is the largest Artisan market in Quito. If you are looking for souvenirs at great prices then La Mariscal should definitely be on your list of Quito Ecuador tourist attractions. Some say it’s like a little Otavalo market.
La Mariscal the Largest Artisan Market in Quito Ecuador
Address of Mercado Artesanal La Mariscal – Reina Victoria and Juan Leon Mera on Jorge Washington road, Quito 170150, Ecuador
6) Parque Itchimbia/Itchimbia Park
Quito has many beautiful parks, but if you only have time for one this should be it. Itchimbia park is situated on a hill and offers wonderful views of the city.
View of Quito from Parque Itchimbia
The main attraction in this park is the Itchimbia Cultural Center. This is a beautiful building make out of iron and glass.
At the Itchimbia Cultural Center you can see art exhibits and cultural events.
Aerial video of Park Ichimbia/ Parque Ichimbia Quito
If you’re planning on exploring more of the Andes you’ll want to read about the top 15 things to do in Ecuador’s Andes Mountains. You may also enjoy 5 places to visit between Quito and Cuenca.
Address of Parque Itchimbia – Iquique y Jose Maria Aguime, Quito 170150,Ecuador
What Will You Do In Quito?
I hope you’re even more excited about your upcoming trip to Quito now. Did you see anything on our list of top 6 Quito Ecuador tourist attractions that you’re adding to your travel plans? If so please tell us about it by commenting on this post.
If you feel we’ve missed anything that should be among the best places to visit in Quito please add it by commenting.