Add dates
Quito

Culture & history

Our most recommended Quito Culture & History

Historic City of Quito and The Middle of the World

1. 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.

Quito: Urban Legends of Quito by Night

2. 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.

Quito: Middle of the World Tour with Tickets

3. 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.

Quilotoa Lagoon: Full-Day Tour from Quito

4. 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.

Otavalo and Imbabura Sightseeing Tour from Quito

5. Otavalo and Imbabura Sightseeing Tour from Quito

Depart Quito and journey towards the Guayllabamba valley to see the Quitsato Sundial in La Mitad Del Mundo, built to share the astronomical knowledge of the pre-Hispanic cultures of the region. Pass over the line of the equator and continue towards the largest indigenous market in South America. Shop for souvenir textiles and traditional crafts at the Mercado de Ponchos, where the locals sell tagua nut jewelry, fake shrunken heads, hand-painted trays, spices, spools of wool and other interesting items under mushroom-shaped umbrellas. Get back to nature at the Peguche waterfall, popular with the locals who go there to take a sacred bath on the eve of Inti Raymi. Continue towards the caldera lake of Cuicocha in the Cotacachi-Cayapas Reserve (excluding holidays) and get stunning views of the Cotacachi Volcano before driving back to Quito.

Quito: Full-Day Ciudad Mitad del Mundo Tour

6. Quito: Full-Day Ciudad Mitad del Mundo Tour

Board the Quito Tour Bus on Avenida Naciones Unidas in the heart of Quito, and then depart the city in the early afternoon. Journey to the Geobotanical Reserve of the Pululahua Crater at the Ciudad Mitad del Mundo complex. Visit the new Beer Museum, see a miniature model that celebrates the architectural beauty of the Historic Center of Quito and more. Finally, you will visit the Agave Museum where you will have a tasting of this ancestral drink. Return to the start point in the evening.

Quito and Middle of the World City Full-Day Tour

7. Quito and Middle of the World City Full-Day Tour

Following morning pick-up from your hotel in Quito, get to know the highlights of the city with a professional guide. Journey down Gran Colombia Avenue to the monumental Basilica del Voto Nacional and admire its impressive neo-Gothic façade. Continue to Plaza de la Independencia in the colonial heart of the city center and visit the striking white cathedral and Government Palace. Admire the gold altars of the ornate Jesuit church of La Compañía de Jesús, along with the 16th-century Church of San Francisco. Journey up El Panecillo hill to see a statue of the Virgin Mary and get panoramic city views. Next, visit the Middle of the World City to learn more about the equator at the Intiñan Solar Museum. Look at representations of the colonial era architecture and visit the monument that divides the northern and southern hemispheres.

Otavalo: Full day trip from Quito

8. Otavalo: Full day trip from Quito

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. Make 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.

Quito: City Highlights and Food Walking Tour

9. Quito: City Highlights and Food Walking Tour

Explore Quito, the oldest capital in South America, from all of its angles. Get to know the main historical plazas, buildings, churches and parks. Admire downtown's colonial architecture with its mix of 19th century and modern style buildings. Get away from the main sites and explore lesser-known gems, like the main flea market in town, where you'll understand another side of every day local life. Eat at a top street food stop, and explore one of the main markets. Finish the journey sampling some of the best chocolate and coffee from the hands of a top chocolatier.

Quito: 1914 Original Trolley City Tour

10. Quito: 1914 Original Trolley City Tour

Visit the historic center of Quito, the largest and best preserved in South America, in one of the local supplier's original trolleys, which are a replica of the trams that circulated in Quito in the last century. Visit the Basilica del Voto Nacional Church, where you make a brief stop for an explanation of its facade, before later heading towards the Panecillo viewpoint, an iconic place in the city, renowned for its beauty. Here you will find a giant statue of the "Winged Virgin", and you can admire a beautiful landscape of colonial and modern Quito. Later, continue to the Plaza de San Francisco, one of the representative places of the city and full of history. From here, you walk to the Plaza Grande, the historical and political center of the city, surrounded by innumerable attractions including: the Cathedral, the Palace of Government, the Archbishop's Palace, and the La Compañía church (entrance to churches are not included). Take a tour on a Monday and you will have the possibility to observe the Presidential Change of Guard Finish your tour by visiting the traditional La Ronda neighborhood — a romantic setting with workshops where you can learn all about the work and cultural traditions of authentic artisans.

  • Guided tours
  • Day trips
  • Private tours
  • Multi-day trips
14 activities found
Sort by:

Frequently asked questions about Quito Culture & History

What are other things to do than Culture & History that are worth visiting in Quito?

The other unmissable things to do in Quito are:

Which Quito Culture & History are taking additional COVID-19 precautions?

Other Sightseeing Options in Quito

Want to discover all there is to do in Quito? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Quito

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 110 reviews

Wonderful experience and an awesome guide! Took care of making sure all questions were answered in both English and Spanish. Seeing the city is the best way with no crowds, so you get to really enjoy the sites. Highly recommend this trip.

We had a very nice experience, our guide is very professional, kind and drives well. The cable car is a very nice place to visit as well as the old town and half of the world. The price is definitely worth it.

This was a good full-day tour of downtown Quito and the Mitad del Mundo. We learned a lot obout the city and the country.

It was relaxed. Interesting stops, love the waterfall and all the stuff you could buy. Thanks.

Tour was excellent an tour guide Andres very professional.