QUITO - Ecuador's Capital City
population, Quito is the second largest city
in Ecuador with over 1.6 million residents
while Guayaquil claims the number one spot
at 2.3 million.
directly on the Equator at an altitude of
9500 feet, Quito's weather is consistently
moderate with average daytime highs of 69
degrees and 48 degrees at night. You
will need to dress appropriately!
thing that struck my attention when we
landed at the Quito airport was that it was
only a single runway, located right dab
smack in the center of the city. But
that is going to be changing very soon for a
new airport, located about an hour north of
the city, is under construction and is
scheduled to open in early 2013. I
guess that's good news, but guests should
expect to see a sizeable increase in taxi
fares to and from the airport.
like most other large cities, is crowded,
densely pack with people and buildings, and
congested with way too much automobile
traffic. I'm really not sure why an
expat would want to set up residence here
because Quito suffers from all the same
problems as do most other large metropolitan
information, check out my video
ESMERALDAS & ATACAMES - Northwestern Beaches
we are beach people, we wanted to explore a
typical Ecuadorian beach community.
Not really knowing where to go, we started
looking at maps and reading web articles and
decided to check out the towns of Esmeraldas
and it's neighboring town to the south,
Esmeraldas is a port city, and home to
Ecuador's petro chemical industry. It
is NOT the sort of place a gringo will want
to live nor vacation. However, it is a
town one should stop by and visit. We
enjoyed touring the town, especially under
guidance of our accomplished taxi driver and
this area, we experienced the best weather
conditions since we left the U.S. for our
expat adventure. Even though we were
at sea level, and on the equator, we were
not experiencing scorching hot and humid
weather. Instead, we had to endure 82
degrees, sunny skies and low humidity.
At light, it dipped down to a bone chilling
un-air-conditioned condo (on the beach)
received constant breezes off the ocean,
forcing us to sleep under a light blanket at
night. HOW AWESOME WAS THAT!
was quite abundant, provided you want to
live in a "resort" toe of environment.
Condo apartments were plentiful while single
family homes were almost non existent.
The priced fort beachfront living was dirt
cheap, when compared with similar types of
accommodations either in the US, Panama or
love (and crave) the beach life, Atacames
was not for us. It reminded me of the
early days of Miami and Ft Lauderdale with
it's rampant high-rise developments
springing up like summertime dandelions.
That coupled with rising crime, virtually no
police presence, lackluster emergency
medical services and only a handful of
gringo residents (maybe 10-12), Fran and I
took Atacames off the list of potential
places we would consider. However, it
just might be the spot for you.
information, check out my video
CUENCA - A Little Bit of Europe
like Europe, specifically Spain or Portugal,
you will love Cuenca. Situated 9000
feet high in the Andes mountains, weather
patterns are mild. Daytime highs
average 82 degrees while the nights get down
to the mid 60's. And if you
think rain is going to be a problem, think
again. The average month sees only
2.9" of precip.
the most popular of all Ecuadorian towns for
expats and claims the highest per capita
number of expat residents. It's
population, nearly 500,000, holds title to
about 1300-1500 expat residents.
Mostly are full timers.
out to find out WHY Cuenca was so popular.
Here is what we found.
Incredible weather. Clean. Low
crime. State of the art medical
facilities. A fully functional EMS/911
system. A well manicured, walk able
town. Inexpensive public
transportation. Low real estate prices
(purchase and rent). Excellent gringo
community. Fabulous restaurants with
equally fabulous prices. Our only
problem (AND THIS IS OUR PROBLEM - NOT
YOURS) we are 4 hours from the beach.
for a startling confession... Had
we known about Cuenca before we made the
decision to move to Costa Rica's Central
Valley - in all likelihood, we would have
moved to Cuenca!
information, check out my two videos
are contemplating an expat lifestyle and
think Costa Rica or Panama are the best
places to go... think again. You owe
it to yourself to investigate Ecuador.
It is worth the time and the expense to
travel down to South America and see just
how good a retirement life you could have
and very little cost.
way... if you are the slightest bit curious,
we have no intentions (at this time) of
uprooting ourselves and moving. Yes we
can save at least a third over what we are
currently spending. Hell, we can
probably save even more. BUT... we can
pick up and be at the beach anytime we want
in less than 5 minutes! For us, there
is no beating that. Pura Vida.