Quito is the capital of Ecuador and it is the highest official capital city in the world at 2,850 meters above sea level. We did a full day city tour with a private guide who took us to a few churches, up to the Panecillo mountain where the winged Virgin Mary looks over the city, and the old town area of La Ronda. For the best Panama hats, head to Homero Ortega on Plaza San Francisco. Turns out the Panama hat is actually Ecuadorean in origin.
Calle la Ronda is one of the oldest streets in Quito. The street is narrow and completely renovated with signs describing some of the artists and houses they used to live in.
One of the popular excursions from Quito is a visit to the Otavalo Market about 2 hours north. The market is busiest on Saturdays when many indigenous people bring their wares from neighboring villages. The Otavaleno people are most famous for their weaving. The market is packed with textiles, hats, leather goods, silver jewelry with a large animal and vegetable market adjacent.