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Quito, Ecuador is surrounded by natural beauty, by the mountains ringing the city, some volcanic, some with white capped peaks, lushly forested hills and a fertile valley. Long before the Spanish arrived, Quito was a busy place. It was a major Inca city and was destroyed by the Incas in a scorched earth policy that only briefly halted the Spanish invasion. Quito grew up and out from that colonial core, and now can be organized into three areas. South of Old Town is mainly residential, a working-class housing area, escort quito. North of Old Town is modern Quito with high-rise buildings, shopping centers, the financial center and major business centers. North of Quito, Ecuador is Mariscal Sucre airport, through which most visitors to Ecuador arrive and depart. New Town is the financial and business part of town, with modern buildings, shops, hotels and restaurants, gay rent quito. There are also many museums and things to do and see in New Town. A don't miss is the Casa de Cultura Ecuatoriana which houses several museums, including the Museo del Banco Central, with wonderful archaeological displays, gay guayaquil. This Inca gold sun mask is only one of the treasures on display. There are also musical instruments, traditional dress and art.

Quito, Ecuador is a little more than 13 mi (22 km) from the Equator, and a trip to the Mitad del Mundo allows you to straddle both hemispheres, stroll around the monument and then climb the viewing platform. There's an ethnographical museum and a scale model of Quito's old town. A few miles away is the pre-Inca site of Rumicucho and the volcanic crater of Pululahua. The market town of Otavalo is a popular destination for the Saturday markets which have been there since pre-Inca days. The Otavalan Indians are famous for their traditional dress and jewelry, gay rent quito. You can buy textiles (weavings and clothing) and handicrafts at the market. For more shopping, gay escort quito, go north of Otavalo to Cotacachi for the leatherwork, and then to go to Ibarra, the small colonial capital of Imbabura, for woodwork, gay guayaquil. If you have the time, take the train from here to the coastal town of San Lorenzo, Ecuador. The route drops from Ibarra at 7342 ft (2225 m) above sea level to sea level over a 129 m (193 km) route. The train ride is not for the faint-hearted, but you'll see spectacular scenery.