Tons of articles have been written about the colonial city of Cuenca, Ecuador. About how it’s so cheap, and how it’s such a great retirement place, etc.
Here is what you need to know about this great city.
7 Things to Know About Cuenca Ecuador
- Full Name and founding: Santa Ana de los Ríos de Cuenca. Founded in 1557, by the Viceroy of Peru, Mr. Andrés Hurtado de Mendoza.
- Location: Southern Ecuador, Azuay Province. Ecuador is located on the north-west part of South America. Borders Columbia to the north, Peru to the east and south, and the Pacific Ocean to the west.
- From Guayaquil: South-east 155 miles (250 km). 3 1/2 – 5 hours by bus, just 30 minutes by plane.
- From Quito: South 274 miles (442 km). 9 hours by bus, less than 1 hour by plane.
- Elevation: 8400 ft (2560 meters)
- Population: 417,632 – (331,028 urban and 86,604 rural)
- Climate: known as “the land of eternal spring” Cuenca and surrounding areas experience very little climate change throughout the year. Expect warm to hot days (67°F – 82°F / 19°C – 28°C) and cool evenings (as low as 51°F / 10°C).
Getting to Cuenca Ecuador
- By Plane: There are two international airports – Quito (Airport code: UIO) and Guayaquil (Airport code: GYE). Both airports have daily flights to Cuenca. Expect airfares of roughly $45 – $55 from Guayaquil (on the coast) and $55 – $68 from Quito (in the Sierra). Choose from TAME Airlines, LAN or Aerogal. All flights to the Galapagos Islands go through Guayaquil Airport.
- By Bus: Cuenca is well connected to the rest of Ecuador by a network of buses. Buses leave from Quito every hour, 24 hours a day – the trip takes roughly 9 hours and costs between $9 and $12. Buses run roughly $1 to $1.50 per hour of travel time. From Guayaquil, buses are leaving every 30 min for Cuenca. The trip ranges from 3 1/2 – 5 hours, depending on if it goes through Cajas National Park or through Cañar – cost is roughly $7-9 each way.
Take a free tour of Cuenca in this 12 video post.
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