Ecuador's capital is known for it's rich colonial history, it's beautiful landscapes and pre-Columbian art. UNESCO refers to Quito as the city with "the best-preserved, least altered historic center in Latin America".
While some travelers may visit the city in 1-2 days, we suggest a three day tour that encompasses the historical city center, the modern and northern part of the city, and several archeological sites located in the district of Quito.
Quitsato, the original name of the city, means "Middle Earth" in the ancient 'tsafiqui' language. Quito is the only site on the planet where the Equator crosses over the highlands. Pre-Inca civilizations were able to develop their astronomical knowledge with the assistance of clear landmarks surrounding the city: the Pichincha Volcano (15,000 ft) to the West, the Antisana (19,700 ft) to the East, and the snow-capped Cayambe (18,725 ft) to the Northeast, almost precisely on the Equator.