There is more to Ecuador than meets the eye. If your looking for fresh foods, friendly people, and places to visit while take amazing photos Ecuador is the place for you. The South American continent is at times underrated in comparison, although it has some of the coolest attractions in the world! One thing that stuck out the most to me about Ecuador was the amount Instagram worthy swings they had at different locations around Ecuador. The key things I’ll talk about are safety, food, and attractions of Ecuador.

I ended up studying abroad for several weeks and while I was there I learned a thing or two about the locals. When traveling to Ecuador you don’t have to worry about crime in comparison to other countries their crime rate is little to nothing except minor crime like theft which did not happen once while I was there. The only thing you must watch out for are crooks in the nightlife areas. Often or not people on the streets try to give out flyers that are laced with types of drugs that can make your body feel numb or cause you to feel loopy. Typically, criminals use these drugs to get people drugged up so they can take you to your ATM to take out money and steal from you. My friends and I were warned about this and experienced this first hand when we visited clubs in the heart of Quito. Before exiting a club an older man approached us and lied about being a businessman from the US and gave my guy friend at least 5 business cards. He kept trying to convince us he was trustworthy and once he left I instantly told my friend to drop the cards and not touch his face. We were lucky because his hands went numb 5 mins later and it took about 7 hrs until his hands felt normal again. Although, this story may seem a bit scary, things like this happen all the time and you just have to be cautious where ever you go even with friends. Now the food in Ecuador was great. They have a delicacy I tried while I was there called Cuy (guinea pig) that was served with potatoes and a peanut sauce. It honestly tasted like a tough chicken wing, which wasn’t bad. My favorite food was the Empanadas (a type of baked or fried turnover consisting of pastry and filling with meat or cheese) and the plantain chips are fresh and delicious as well. The fruits in Ecuador are fresher than we get in America and the pineapple was the juiciest I have ever tasted in my life, so definitely try and buy some tasty snacks fruit snacks or plantain chips to go if you can. Now, on to attractions. Quito is a definite must see and they have beautiful gardens and nightlife. The Teleférico is a sky ride trip that  you can take up to the top of the mountain in Quito, so you can overlook the whole city in all its glory. While your up there you can pet llamas and ride horses around a small portion of the mountain. The Mitad del Mundo (center of the world) monument was the coolest thing to see because you are literally standing in the middle of the world where the equator is at. The lovely Lake of San Pablo is a site to see on the way to Otavalo, Ecuador with a beautiful swing that goes over the water for tourists to relax on. Otavalo is a small town about 2 hrs North of Quito and has several churches and a flea market with all kinds of unique souvenirs to take home. Trust me you’ll want to save tour cash for this part of the trip. Another great thing about Ecuador is that the modern currency is in US dollars, so you won’t have to worry about changing your money to a different currency before you get there. Overall, if you get the chance to go to Ecuador, take a leap of faith and enjoy the adventures and sited the country has to offer.