5 Must-See Tourist Attractions in Ecuador

Planning a trip to Ecuador? The country has a whole lot to see – here are some of our favorite must-see tourist attractions in Ecuador

Ecuador is a tiny country with a big impact. Smaller than most US states, Ecuador packs a lot into its borders. From beaches to mountains to islands full of unique wildlife, make Ecuador your next vacation destination.

Here are 5 must-see tourist attractions that you can’t miss on your Ecuadorian adventure.


Cotopaxi is one of Ecuador’s most popular national park, and for good reason. It’s easy to make a day trip from Cuenca or Quito to Cotopaxi. You’ll be rewarded with Ecuador’s second tallest (and still active!) volcano. Check out the smaller Rumiñawi and Sincholagua volcanoes while you’re there too.
It’s advised to take a guided tour and transportation, as you can go high up the volcano and even get out to hike. If you do plan to hike or head up the volcano, make sure you prepare ahead of time and be aware of the potential for altitude sickness.

The Boardwalks of Guayaquil

Guayaquil is the most populous city in Ecuador and is also known as the gateway to the Galapagos. There are many historical sites in Guayaquil, but the true gem is the Malecón 2000, which is a mile-and-a-half long boardwalk along the Guayas River.

Walk the boardwalk to see the historical sites, enjoy the waterfronts and gardens, and visit the museums, shops, and restaurants located along the boardwalk. You can take an evening boat ride up the river to take in the city all lit up at night.

The Galapagos Islands

The Galapagos Islands
Are you dying to see a blue-footed booby? Maybe a waved albatross? A giant tortoise? Or Darwin’s finches? If seeing these animals is on your bucket list, there’s only one place you can see them: the Galapagos Islands.

The Galapagos Islands are a group of 13 large and 6 small islands and 42 islets located 850 miles off the west coast of Ecuador. The main attraction of the Islands is to see the unique birds and you can only go there as part of a guided tour.

Otavalo Market

Don’t leave Ecuador without authentic, locally made souvenirs for your family and friends. The Otavalo Market is full of rugs and blankets, bags, sweaters, socks, and other products made of wool.

Other unique items include tagua nut jewelry, locally-produced spices, and leather goods.


Last but not least is the town of Baños, set up in the Andes Mountains. Whether you are looking for adventure or relaxation, Baños has it. From mountain climbing to white water rafting to mud baths and hot springs, Banos should absolutely be on your Ecuador agenda.

Before you head out on your trip, make sure you read up about Ecuador, their customs, and these tips to keep yourself safe while traveling.

What Will Your Next Tourist Attraction Be?

Will you visit all of these places? Pick and choose? No trip to Ecuador is complete without hitting some of these tourist attractions. Visit some of the popular destinations and then head off the beaten path.

For more resources on travel, check out some of our other blog posts