Pichincha
Culture & History

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Our most recommended Pichincha Culture & History

Quilotoa Lagoon: Full-Day Tour from Quito

1. Quilotoa Lagoon: Full-Day Tour from Quito

Drive south from Quito to the Quilotoa area and visit its famous lagoon. Along the way, you'll admire the beautiful Andean landscape and stop at the Shalala viewpoint. Next, you'll visit the community viewpoint and descend to the lagoon. Once there, you'll have free time to hike and explore the area. You'll return on a path that connects the lagoon to the community viewpoint. It's an intense walk, so if you're not in good shape, simply climb on a mule that will pack you back to the viewpoint. After a lunch break, you'll also stop at a Tigua craft workshop, famous for its colorful products, and visit the Toachi's Canon.

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Quito: 2.5-Hour City Bus Tour

2. Quito: 2.5-Hour City Bus Tour

Embark on a fun and relaxing tour experience as you explore Quito on a double-decker bus. See more of the city in less time, visit famous locations and enjoy informative commentary from an audio guide along the way. The itinerary includes the highlights of Quito, including its historic city center, the largest in South America. Stop at Panecillo Hill, and enjoy panoramic views from the most important lookout in Quito. Enjoy a memorable ride through the city and take great photos from the top of the bus.

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Quito: Night Street Food and Local Drinks Tour

3. Quito: Night Street Food and Local Drinks Tour

Discover the diversity of Quito's street food scene and delight your palate at the favorite eateries in town. Begin your food adventure with sunset watching at a plaza and enjoy the panoramic views of the main valleys at your feet. Then it's time to dive into the food scene of Quito. First, sample a classic Andean drink and get ready for various foods samplings in two favorite neighborhoods. Eat like a local on this tour and be surprised by the diversity of plantain, potatoes, and yuca soaked in a tasty spicy salsa called ají. Experience the bustle of the crowded stalls where local cab drivers grab a quick bite before heading to their night shifts. Savor homemade traditional dishes and enjoy the time at one of the favorite markets in town, a gastronomic paradise showcasing the natural abundance of Ecuador. Finish off the evening with a visit to a classic speakeasy bar. Enjoy advanced mixologies and traditional local drinks.

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Historic City of Quito and The Middle of the World

4. Historic City of Quito and The Middle of the World

Begin by a visit to one of South America's best preserved historic city centers. Go to the Basilica del Voto Nacional Church, where you can climb up its high domes. Move towards the Panecillo viewpoint, an iconic place in the city, renowned for its beauty and giant statue of the Winged Virgin - here you can admire a beautiful landscape of both colonial and modern Quito (entrance to churches not included). Continue on to the traditional La Ronda neighborhood. In this romantic setting you can find workshops where you can learn from a group of authentic artisans how their work is done. See historic trades that keep alive the cultural traditions of this charming city. Stop at Zona Rosa for approximately an hour and a half to have some free time for lunch (not included). You will then go to the Middle of the World City, where you can see the monument that divides the northern and southern hemispheres of the planet. Entrance to the Middle of the World complex is included ,where you can enjoy experiences that defy the laws of physics and occur only in this part of the world. NOTE: On Sunday, this tour operates in an inverted way, first you visit the Middle of the World and then you have the city tour.

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Otavalo: Small Group Market Tour from Quito with Lunch

5. Otavalo: Small Group Market Tour from Quito with Lunch

Benefit from pick-up at your hotel in Quito, and then journey by private vehicle towards the lively indigenous bazaar of Otavalo Market. Make brief stops at the village of Guayabamba and get an amazing view of San Pablo Lake and the surrounding landscape. Try some of the local biscochos (cookies) typical of the region along the way. Visit a weaving workshop in Peguche to learn about the handmade artisanal products and clothes typical of the region. Get back on the road to arrive at Otavalo Market and join the locals who come to sell their wares at the most spectacular market in Latin America. Buy unique souvenirs or just watch the hustle and bustle of the market vendors. Stop for lunch in the village of Cotacachi before making your way to the beautiful crater lake of Cuicocha at the foot of Cotacachi Volcano. Return to Quito at the end of a day full of activities and get dropped off at your hotel.

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Quito: Urban Bike Tour

6. Quito: Urban Bike Tour

Explore La Floresta, Mariscal, La Carolina Park, Iñaquito, and much more as you gain an insight into how locals live in Quito.  Departing from the iconic Ochoymedio Arthouse Cinema, take a look at the amazing street art around La Floresta as you also learn about some of the artists who painted them. Then, head to Carolina Park and visit the Botanic Gardens. You'll be riding along Amazonas Avenue, one of the main arteries of the modern Quito. Afterwards, stop and take some great photos.  Experiencing a local market is a must in any city. The iconic and colourful Iñaquito Market dates back to the 1970s. The tour will then head back via Carolina Park once again, returning to La Floresta. Making your way past an impressive 50-metre tall mural, the tour will finish at a local café. Upon arrival, you'll get to enjoy a complimentary drink and snack.

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Quito: Urban Legends of Quito by Night

7. Quito: Urban Legends of Quito by Night

Start your Quito night tour in the northern part of the city and travel through the most important commercial areas where most of the hotels are located. Explore aboard a replica of the trams used in the city in the last century. Head to the historic center to gaze at the illuminated churches and main tourist attractions. Discover some of the city's unique landscapes (tickets not included). Then, continue to Mirador del Panecillo (entrance included) for a beautiful view of colonial and modern day Quito. During the tour, you will get to know the people who live in this city better, and begin to recognize their way of speaking and thinking. During your visit to the city, your guide will tell you all about the historic urban legends that are a part of the traditional and cultural heritage of the people of Quito.

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Quito: Middle of the World Tour with Tickets

8. Quito: Middle of the World Tour with Tickets

Begin your 3-hour tour in the northern part of Quito and head up to the middle of the city. This is where you will find the monument that stands on the line that divides the northern and the southern hemispheres. The Equatorial Monument was built during the 17th century when the precise dividing line between the hemispheres was defined by a French expeditionary team.

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Quito: Old Town and Middle of the World Tour.

9. Quito: Old Town and Middle of the World Tour.

From your hotel, the tour starts with a visit to the old town visiting Plaza Grande, and La Compañia de Jesús, San Francisco and La Basilica Churches. You then continue onto Panecillo Hill, a magnificent viewpoint overlooking the city. Leaving the old town, head to the cable car Teleférico, traveling to 4,200 meters above sea level to view all of Quito. Following a 45-minute drive, you will find yourself in the middle of the world, visiting the equator line monument and Intiñan museum. Another 45-minute will have you back at your hotel. The tour itinerary is very flexible and lunch could be provided in either the middle of the world or in the old town.

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Mitad del Mundo & Horseback Ride at Pululahua Volcano

10. Mitad del Mundo & Horseback Ride at Pululahua Volcano

This day tour combines a visit to the educational museum built on the equator, Mitad del Mundo, with a beautiful horseback ride through the Pululahua Crater.  In the morning, drive to the ranch where the horses are waiting. From the ranch, robust and amiable mountain horses will take us through the stunning landscape of this ancient volcanic crater – the biggest one on the whole American continent and one of only two inhabited craters in the world – with its constantly changing sceneries and huge biodiversity. While circling the central lava cone, witness volcanic history and nature, interesting geological formations, mineral avalanches blooming with wild orchids and traditional Andean agriculture.  The horseback riding time will be about 3 hours. Lunch with panoramic view over valleys and cloud forest covered mountains (lunch if option is selected). Afterwards, continue by car to the Mitad del Mundo. On an interactive guided tour they will tell you about the history of the tribes in that area and with some help of a few scientific tests you will find out that this place is exactly the middle of the world. Return to Quito at the end of the tour.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Pichincha

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What people are saying about Pichincha

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 110 reviews

Our guide Gustavo Tupiza was great and very knowledgeable. We were very pleased to have arranged with him for a full day tour in Quito and La Mitad del Mundo. He told us a lot about history, as well as about what is happening in the city now and about Ecuador in general. We learned a lot and had a lot of fun! I would definitely recommend this Quito city - La Mitad del Mundo tour with Gustavo. He is the best! Thanks for a wonderful day, Gustavo !!!

Very nice tour. Exciting and interesting. Tour started late as the bus arrived late. After a while this young guide joined us. She is a very good guide. Made the whole trip interesting and exciting by her narration of stories behind each and every building. Walking with the group at night in those historical places was amazing.

it is a very nice experience , transportation is cool and comfortable, the guide Daniel is very passionate and I learned a lot !

excellent tour. exactly what I expected. guide was excellent too. I'd recommend to anyone.

Nicolas was so nice, helpful and fun Highly recommend it