A few months back I was fortunate enough to get that “once in a lifetime experience” sailing around the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador. For many tourists that’s the whole focus and Quito gets a day in the itinerary—if they don’t just fly from Guayaquil to the islands instead.

That’s a shame really, because Ecuador’s capital really is worth some extra time. When I go back to Ecuador someday, I want to spend at least a week in that region, with a few nights at the lovely estate hotels like Hacienda Cusin and Hacienda Zuleta.

We just posted a story on the time I did get to spend there, with a couple days in the city and an excursion out to the nearby Andean market towns: Quito and the High Valley of Ecuador. It’s a story of food and flowers, of masses and markets, from the historic center to a town of leather crafters. If a trip to Ecuador is in your future at some point, I hope this convinces you to not pass Quito by. Not all Latin American cities are pleasant places for tourists, but this is one that’s definitely worth the lingering. If you get in touch with Metropolitan Touring, you’ll be in good hands.