I originally came to Quito for a few days and visited some of the most well-known places. I know I say I like to get off the beaten path and avoid tourist spots, but even I have to admit that occasionally touristy places have become so for a good reason!
Here is my list of the well-visited and must-see places in Quito:
1. Plaza Grande
What? One of two large squares in old Quito lined with grand colonial buildings and dotted with towering palm trees.
Where? Between Calle Venezuela and Calle García Moreno, Centro Historico
2. Plaza de Santo Francisco
What? The other of old Quito’s main squares.
It is not as charming as Plaza Grande but it is flanked by some equally attractive buildings, and it is home to the wonderful Iglesia Santo Francisco
which has a beautiful gold ceiling (entrance is free)
Where? on the corner of Avenida Jose de Sucre and Calle García Moreno, Centro Historico
3. Iglesia de la Companía de Jesus
What? A gorgeous church with a carved stone facade
Even if you are not a church person you should check it out!
Where? Between Calle Cuenca and Calle Sebastián de Benalcázar, Centro Historico
Cost? 2$ for students and 4$ for adults. CLick here for visitor information.
4. Fundación Guayasamin
What? The beautiful house of the late Ecuadorian artist Oswaldo Guayasamin has been turned into a muesum that houses his work and his art collection. Not to be missed.
Where? E18-94 y Barrio, Mariano Calvache (I recommend taking a taxi)
Cost? 4$ for students and 8$ for adults. I have an alumni card which works for student discount (winning!) but I still think it’s worth splashing out on 8$ for this fantastic gallery.
Check out my alternative guide to Quito with lesser-known places to visit here!