Ecuador is one of the most fascinating countries in South America, more than making up for its tiny size with a mix of Indigenous cultures, colonial architecture, gorgeous landscapes, and deep rainforests. This picturesque country of roughly 18 million inhabitants, bordered by Colombia, Peru, and the Pacific Ocean on the continent's west coast—yet no larger than most US states—attracts tourists from all over the world for a variety of reasons.
There are endless climbing and trekking activities for outdoor sports lovers to indulge in. Ecuador's lush, ecologically significant woods are a great lure for environment lovers, while wildlife watchers will flock to the famous Galápagos Islands. What about sunbathers? Ecuador's beautiful tropical beaches are usually regarded as some of the world's best and least spoiled.
Ecuador, which was once a part of both the Inca and the Spanish Empires, still bears many traces of both. These enduring influences are perhaps most visible in the people's rich culture and the magnificent colonial architecture of Quito, part of which has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Read through this list of the best attractions and top things to do in Ecuador to discover more about this lovely South American country.