Ecuador · Travel

Cuenca

I can’t believe we’ve been in Cuenca for over a week. We haven’t done too much. Lot’s of walking around the city and taking care of the mundane. We’re at our new apartment for 2 weeks, so I don’t feel rushed to see the area all at once.
We’re staying at a brand new apartment near the center of town and can walk most places. I love this, the boys, not so much. They enjoy taxi rides. We’re lucky to have a great park just a block away from our apartment where the boys love to play every day. The rest of our days have been filled with cooking, cleaning, playing, school, playing card games together, and exploring.
Cuenca has a sizeable expat population and is a popular retirement destination for many Americans wishing to retire on a smaller budget. However, it doesn’t feel that touristy in spite of all the foreigners. The foreigners actually bring a nice mix to the population. There are a variety of types of restaurants which we haven’t seen in the rest of the country. We have eaten at an Indian restaurant and an Italian restaurant, which were both great. I’d like to try the Mexican and Thai restaurants that are nearby before we leave.
Cuenca is the 3rd largest city in Ecuador. The city is known for its red tiled roofs and Panama hats and it has 2 rivers that run through it. The 2500m elevation keeps the weather here just about perfect. It gets up into the 70s during the day, but dips into the low 50’s at night.
I find that I enjoy the sierra more than the beach. It definitely seems more civilized here. I don’t know if Mexican beaches spoiled me, but I didn’t find an Ecuadorian beach that I was overly impressed with. Maybe it’s the dramatic peaks of these mountains that call to me. Perhaps it’s because I’m from the flat, expanisve, concrete city of Houston that I am so fascinated by the breathtaking Andes.

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