fun to do kids quito ecuador   Travel for Kids


Quito is an old city – in 1534 it was named San Francisco de Quito when Spanish arrived – but the origins of the city are even earlier. The area was settled by pre-Inca tribes, one called the Quitu. When the Incas conquered the region, they made Quito the northern capital. Kids will enjoy a glimpse of these ancient civilizations in the Quito archaeological museum. The Spanish built their colonial city on the ruins of the Inca capital. Today, modern Quito is two parts, the Old Quito with Spanish colonial buildings, and New Quito, with hotels, shops and restaurants.
  Virgin of Quito – Start your trip to Quito with an overview of the city. Take a taxi to the hilltop (Cerro Panecillo) east of Old Quito. From the Cerro Panecillo, there are glorious views of the high mountains surrounding Quito. Climb up the stairs inside the Virgin to the observation balcony (as you're climbing up, you'll see that the statue is made of thousands of bronze and aluminum pieces.) If it's a nice day, bring a kite for the kids, and watch your kite soaring high in the sky towards the mountains in the clouds.
  Old Quito (Old Town) – To get a feel of the old Spanish colonial city, take a walking tour around Old Quito. The Plaza Grande (Independencia), at the heart of the historic district, has a monument to Ecuadorian independence.
      Church and Monastery of San Francisco (Iglesia and Convento de San Francisco) San Francisco is the oldest church in Quito (built on the site of an Inca house). The interior of the church is magnificent baroque architecture with beautifully carved statues and gilded chapels. Next door to the church is the convent, which houses the Museo de San Francisco (17th century paintings and religious art). The tour of the museum also includes a visit to the organ loft, a view of the whole church from high above.
    Museo de la Ciudad – Housed in the old Hospital San Juan de Dios, the museum exhibits the history of the city from Inca times to the present.

Editor's note: Old Quito is charming, but has a reputation for tourists being robbed. We wandered around Old Quito without any difficulty, but kept our cameras out of sight.

  Parque La Carolina – Parque La Carolina, the prettiest park in town, has a nice size artificial lake, natural science museum, soccer fields, playground with swings and climbing structures. The artificial lake has pedal boats for rent.
    Natural History Museum (Museo Ecuatoriano de Ciencias Naturales) – The museum is small, but the collection encompasses the incredible variety of animals, insects, and reptiles from Ecuador. The entrance to the museum is adorned with a big stuffed condor, wings outspread. Exhibits in the museum have on display butterflies, tarantulas and scorpions from the Amazon, crabs, shells, lava rocks, stuffed iguanas, penguins and birds from the Galapagos, and skeletons of anaconda and boa constrictors.

Museo Arqueologico, Casa de la Cultura Ecuatoriana (Parque El Ejido) – This archeological museum is a gem, with artifacts dating back thousands of years, including human figurines from 4,000 years ago, masks, necklaces, and earrings of gold and silver, imaginative ceramics painted in vivid green, red, yellow and white (clay class will never be the same …).

    Parque El Ejido has a playground with slides and climbing structures for little kids and painting exhibitions on the weekends.

Parque La Alameda – In the park, you can rent pedal or row boats on a small artificial lake. Check out the statue of Simon Bolivar in a heroic pose on his horse. Don't miss the outdoor relief map of Ecuador which looks like a big flounder with the Andean mountains running down the middle. There is also the 19th century Quito astronomical observatory, El Observatorio Astronomico, the oldest observatory in South America, with old telescopes and instruments.

    Quito day trips
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