Cuenca & Ingapirca

Cuenca is a beautiful old colonial city with its cobbled streets and red tiled roofs. UNESCO named it a World Heritage Site and despite being Ecuador’s third busiest city it also enjoys a delightfully provincial and tranquil atmosphere.

Why visit Cuenca & Ingapirca ?

  • Marvel at the blue domed Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception
  • Wander around the intriguing Incan ruins at Ingapirca
  • Take a gentle meander around the charming cobbled streets
  • See the nimble-fingered ladies making the original Panama hats
  • Watch soaring condors when hiking in the Cajas National Park

A visit to the colonial town of Cuenca should include Parque Calderon, the plaza lying at the heart of the city and dominated by the old El Sagrario and new Inmaculada Concepcion Cathedrals, the Plaza de las Flores with its daily flower market and the Panama hat factory.

The Gualaceo valley just outside Cuenca is a delightful area of stunning mountain landscapes, lush agricultural land and enchanting little villages. One such place is San Bartolome where guitars are hand made and artistically decorated and Chordeleg is a small town with many stores selling gold and silver jewellery. As you drive along the banks of the river, lined with weeping willows, you come to Bulcay where the weavers produce the finest shawls and scarves using backstrap looms and the technique of ikat, where the threads are tie-dyed to form specific designs before weaving. You can also visit a stunning orchid garden with over 2500 species.

Nearby is the Cajas National Park, famous for its many beautiful lakes, and to the north, located at over 3200m, is Ecuador’s most important archaeological site, the Ingapirca ruins. The first European to map the ruins was a Frenchman called Charles-Marie de la Condamine who did so in the early 18th Century and deemed the site to be a fortress, but with a small garrison. The principal building and main focus of the complex was the Temple of the Sun, which was important for religious and ceremonial purposes and boasts a number of excellent examples of mortarless stonework for which the Incas were well known.




No Visa is required for UK passport holders.

Health Requirements

No mandatory vaccinations are required.

Time Difference

GMT - 5 Hours

Flight Time

13.5 hours with one stop


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