GringosAbroad Ecuador

GringosAbroad helps expats and travelers navigate Ecuador. When you use our links, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.

Exploring Gualaceo: A Day Trip From Cuenca

Posted in: Ecuador Travel

There are a lot of nice little towns in the province of Azuay. If you are staying in the city of Cuenca, they make a fun day trip. Or if you live in Cuenca, the small towns like Gualaceo make for a great vacation spot.

Gualaceo is a pretty little town near a river. It’s located in a valley and has a warmer climate than Cuenca.


You’ll pass through Gualaceo on your way to Chordeleg, which is known for its silver jewelry.

(You may also enjoy reading about Paute – another town nearby.)

A Beautiful Little Park in Gualaceo

All of the small towns we’ve visited in the Andes have a little park in the center of town. The park in Gualaceo is very pretty, especially on a sunny day.

I really like the atmosphere at the park. Family and friends relaxing and enjoying time together.

The fountains are always a big hit with the kids.

Some of the parks, like this one in Gualaceo, have fountains that spray water high in the air, the kids like running around in the over-spray.


I like the benches and lights. There are lots of flowers and this nice fountain.

park-fountain-gualaceo-ecuadorThere are little shops nearby where you get ice cream to enjoy at the park.

The Open Market In Gualaceo

The open market in Gualaceo is full of fresh produce.


Just looking back at these pictures makes me hungry. We picked up some bananas and some other fruit.


We also bought some baskets at the market and some plants across the street.

The River in Gualaceo

The river in Gualaceo is a beautiful spot. There is a park area that stretches down one side. It has a nice walking path and some picnic tables.


We sat on the grass by the river and had lunch. This big friendly dog joined us, we named him “big red,” he enjoyed sharing our lunch.


Gualaceo is a nice place to spend the day.


Have you been to Gualaceo, or any of the other towns near Cuenca? Please share your experiences by commenting on this post.

You might also enjoy:

Check out our guides:

Meet the Author

Dena Haines is co-editor of GringosAbroad - Ecuador's largest blog for expats and travelers. She is a travel blogger and content marketer. She is also co-founder of ClickLikeThis (GoPro tutorial blog) and Storyteller Travel.

19 comments… add one
  • Cindy Massey Aug 5, 2020, 12:20 pm

    I was wondering where and when I can pick up the bus in Gualaceo on its way to Cuenca. Any help would be appreciated. Please send me an email or 98 965 4225.

  • Kenneth Hanigan Jul 4, 2014, 9:46 am

    We are here in Cuenca for the month and would like to go see this little city as well as the silver city you talk of. Can you suggest best way to go? Guide, bus, is it easy for us to catch a bus to go there on our own so we can spend whatever time we want. Sometimes when you have a guide your time isn’t quite your own. Please give us your suggestions…..any help would be greatly appreciated

    • Bryan Haines Jul 4, 2014, 10:21 am

      We’ve traveled by bus and in our own car. If you go to the terminal, you can get a bus to Gualaceo – Chordeleg is the following town. It is less than an hour by bus and it is just as easy to get back. to Cuenca.

  • Robin Jul 3, 2014, 7:02 pm

    When I look at the photos, I feel that I have “come home”! I’m working on moving to Ecuador within 3 years. I will have to work at doing something for a small income until retirement kicks in- about 7 years. I’m interested in living in Quenca. Does anyone know if there is a hair salon there that needs an AWESOME hairstylist?
    Also, I could use a pen pal to help me get acquainted with the area and sort out the details.
    I’m so excited about my new life!

    xo Robin

    • Diane Aug 3, 2014, 5:10 pm

      There is a really great hair salon for sale – the owner is a gringo and has a booming business. Her husband acquired a new position in the states and she would love to sell to someone really good.
      Let me know if interested and I’ll put you in touch with her.

      • Robin Aug 6, 2014, 1:26 pm

        Thanks so much! Sure, put us in touch. I’m not sure if I’m ready for that now or not, but you never know! Is it in Cuenca?

      • Robin Laurel Aug 13, 2014, 1:40 pm

        Hi Diane,

        Did you receive my reply for the comment you left me about your friend who has a really great hair salon for sale? I’m interested in speaking with her. Please put us in touch. You can have her message me through my salon Facebook page. Just type in Robin Laurel Studio in the FB search bar.


  • Jon Jul 2, 2014, 10:52 am

    Gualaceo has a great Sunday market with lots of jewelry, chocolate and shoe merchants- to name a few. Last weekend I bought my wife solid silver earrings with large genuine pearls for $25 (negotiated). That price included a beautiful matching silver and pearl ring. The main mercado has lots of food vendors where we eat a plate that included a whole fried fresh fish, rice, beans and salad for $1.50. You have to try the whole corn/cheese pancakes they sell there for 35 cents. Sooooo yummy. Bus is 50 cents each way Cuenca-Gualaceo and Taxi can be negotiated for about $13. It take almost 1 hour each way. 45 mins if your taxi driver is nuts!!

  • Jakob Jun 29, 2014, 6:08 pm

    You were in Gualaceo and did not mention the numerous hornado stands in the central market area? It’s one of the best in the country.

  • Anwar Shah Jun 29, 2014, 3:06 pm

    Tremendously beautiful pictures. What camera did you use?

    • Bryan Haines Jun 29, 2014, 5:22 pm

      Thanks Anwar! We used a combination of a Canon point-and-shoot and a Canon dSLR.

  • Evelyn Urgiles Rodriguez Jun 29, 2014, 9:47 am

    Hi guys .I wanted to let you know you’re information is very helpful . Am traveling to Ecuador for the first time .am very excited how’s the weather in august in cuenca. Thanks.Evelyn.

  • Joie Jun 29, 2014, 9:20 am

    Love all your articles, they are quite informative. Gualaceo looks like a nice place. Any expats living here?

  • Lollie Jun 29, 2014, 9:25 am

    Bryan and Dena! Good morning!
    When was the last time you were in Gualaceo? The market is no longer there, where you have it pictured, although I agree, that was very nice. The Mercado Nuevo is up on the hillside now, shiny and new! Many more stalls and choices for fresh fish, produce and grocery items. Take the number 2 bus for 25 cents and you will arrive there. Good luck and happy shopping.

    • Bryan Haines Jun 29, 2014, 5:19 pm

      Hi Lollie – it was about a year ago. We just took a little while to publish. Thanks for the update – we’ll have to visit and get updated pictures.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.