4 Must-Do Activities in Quito When Time is Limited

Quito, brimming with captivating sites, is a challenge to fully explore in just one day. However, if that’s all the time you have in Ecuador’s high-altitude capital, focusing on its most iconic attractions is key. The UNESCO-designated historical center is a must-visit. Here are four essential experiences in Quito when time is of the essence.

1. Compania de Jesus

Iglesia de la Compañía de Jesús – Quito, Ecuador - Atlas Obscura

The Church of the Society of Jesus stands as one of Quito’s most exquisite churches, boasting a rich history. Its construction spanned over 160 years, reflected in its stunning plasterwork, carvings, and decor. This church isn’t just a religious site; it’s a historical monument that transcends personal beliefs and is a must-see for anyone visiting Quito.

2. La Plaza de La Independencia

Plaza de la Independencia - Clave!

At the core of Quito lies Independence Square, a focal point for major events and home to some of Ecuador’s most elegant palaces. The best way to appreciate its attractions is through free tours offered in Quito, which often start or end here. These tours are essential for a comprehensive understanding of the city’s highlights within a day. The square’s centerpiece is a monument honoring Peru’s independence, established in 1898 and symbolizing freedom for the people.

3. Basilica del Voto Nacional

Basílica del Voto Nacional - Bellezas Latinoamericanas | Quito

Prepare to be surprised by the Basilica of the National Vow, especially if you think you’ve seen all church styles. Its beauty and unique design, featuring armadillos in place of traditional gargoyles, set it apart from other neo-gothic structures. An intriguing aspect of this church is a café nestled in its upper levels, offering a chance to relax with a beer. Climbing to the top rewards you with one of Quito’s most breathtaking city views.

4. TeleferiQo

Teleférico Quito Ecuador

A ride on the TeleferiQo is an essential Quito experience, especially with limited time. This gondola journey offers stunning panoramic views and transports you from the city’s hustle and bustle to serene mountain landscapes. At the summit, seize the opportunity to snap photos of llamas and relax at a quaint café.

These four highlights provide a glimpse into Quito’s rich cultural and historical tapestry, perfect for those with only a day to spare in this enchanting city.

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