Alison & Ryans Travel Log travel blog

By the River

View from window to old church

Stormy afternoon overlooking the market area

We arrived late in the afternoon in Cuenca one of Ecuador's oldest cities and the third largest. Cuenca is located in the sierra or highlands at 2500m altitude. On the drive there we passed through some amazing cloud forests high in the Andes that are completely engulfed in clouds.

The centre of Cuenca is listed as a World Heritage Site due to its large proportion of old buildings. It is the place where the Panama hat originated (so Panama isn't the most accurate name for these) and they are still carefully handcrafted here and exported around the world.

We found a hotel in the centre of town close to the artesanal markets. We had a few nice days walking around town, admiring the historical buildings and looking at the markets.

The hardest thing was finding food after 7 o'clock. The city centre was like a ghost town at night and we struggled to find dinner every night we were there. Even though in the day it was very busy no locals live in the centre so every afternoon there was a mass exodus of people from the centre out into the surrounding suburbs.

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