Exploring Quito

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Flag of Ecuador  ,
Tuesday, January 10, 2012

After an early transfer to the airport (4am) and a two hour flight we arrived in Quito. Before leaving Australia I had thought that Quito should be a safe place to travel, however after chatting to a couple of people that we had met on our trip we had heard that this was not the case... As we got into our taxi and prepared to be either robbed or drugged or both, we sat on the edge of our seat as our driver wove in and out of traffic coming within centimetres of hitting other cars as he cut them off. Our hotel was very cute and resembled an old colonial building from the outside and a small town square from the inside. It even had a steep spiral staircase within the room that lead up to our bed. Despite our lack of sleep, Jaclyn and I decided to head out and check out the city. This involved some window-shopping and a chair lift up to the top of the mountains (4000m), however as Quito is 2800m above sea level, we were already in the clouds and the visibility became poorer as we ascended. Apparently this would have been an amazing view of the city should we have been able to see any more than 5 metres ahead of us. The next day was once again spent looking around the old and new sections of the city. We managed to conquer a wonky wooden plank and some dodgy ladders, which were missing every third rung or so and climbed to the top of a church that had an amazing look out over the old town. From here we kept a close eye on the locals and their proximity to us as we walked along some quiet cobble stone streets in order to reach another look out. Fortunately for us we survived with our bank accounts and kidneys in tack. From here the rest of the afternoon was spent wandering a botanical park and visiting a reptiles museum. I even managed to see an anaconda, however, due to it being a baby and locked up in an enclosure, I don't feel that it quiet measured up to seeing in the wild… Sorry Mum, but I’m still going to have to go hunting for one… It was also this evening that we met our tour group for Galapagos; Pamela (Canada), Mel (Australia) and Ermis and June (Heathmont, Victoria… Right opposite the school that Jaclyn went to).
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