Posted by: standing_baba | September 5, 2009

Week 14 Statistics

Stats

DATES: August 31st, 2009 – September 6th, 2009
START LOCATION: Ibarra, Ecuador
END LOCATION: Baños, Ecuador

TOTAL DISTANCE CYCLED: 90.83 miles (146.18 km)
AVERAGE DISTANCE PER DAY: 45.42 miles (73.09 km)
DAYS ON BIKE: 2
LONGEST DAY: 53.48 miles (86.07 km)
SHORTEST DAY: 37.35 miles (60.11 km)
MAXIMUM SPEED: 45.01 mph (72.44 kmph)
TOTAL DISTANCE CYCLED TO DATE: 1,323.64 miles (2,130.20 km)

EXCHANGE RATE:

US $1 = US $1

TOTAL MONEY SPENT: US $227.85
AVERAGE SPENT PER DAY: US $32.55
MOST EXPENSIVE DAY: US $107
LEAST EXPENSIVE DAY: US $9
TOTAL MONEY SPENT TO DATE: US $2,243.27
TRIP AVERAGE SPENT PER DAY: US $22.89

NIGHTS OF FREE CAMPING: N/A
NIGHTS IN COUCHSURFERS’ HOMES: N/A
NIGHTS IN FRIENDS’ HOMES: N/A
NIGHTS IN STRANGERS’ HOMES: N/A
NIGHTS IN CASAS DE CICLISTAS: 3
NIGHTS IN FIRESTATIONS: 1
NIGHTS IN HOSTELS: N/A
NIGHTS IN HOTELS: 3
MOST EXPENSIVE ACCOMMODATION: US $61
LEAST EXPENSIVE ACCOMMODATION: US $0.00

HIGHLIGHTS:

Friends on vacation with me: 1 (Genest)
Anxious airport pick-ups: 1
Adopt-ably cute little girls curious about me on bus: 2
Days at indigenous markets: 1
Volcanoe views from bus window: 1


Responses

  1. I was thinking about spending just half a day in Otavalo and then exploring some of the neighboring towns, Cotacachi, Ibarra for a day or so. Did you get a chance to visit any of these towns. If there is nothing special there, maybe we can spend the extra days in jungle/beach areas.

    • A half day in Otavalo is plenty. The earlier you arrive, the better. Old ladies in colorful dress will have stands set up at sunrise. I passed through Ibarra and stayed at the firestation. When I went out for a bike ride it was nice, lots of cobblestone streets and a few colonial churches downtown, but its just a normal city, nothing worth the effort of arriving there. Unfortunately, I never made it to Cotachi. My original plan was to visit en route to Quito to stay at an ecovillage in the surrounding countryside. From what I heard though it’s a beautiful, green area with lakes and pastures and traditional ways of life—basically the opposite of Quito and less visited than Otavalo. I’d say visit Cotachi in the afternoon after the Otavalo market then stay there. Like I said earlier though, you can’t go wrong with a longer, more relaxed jungle or beach stay in Mishiuali or Esmeraldas. It’s better to enjoy your time in a few places than bus all over the country.

  2. Hey Trevor,
    Finally booked our tickets to Ecuador. Now time to brush up on the Spanish! Due to time restrictions, I think I decided to stick mostly to the northern half of the county, Quito, Otavalo, Esmeraldas, and now I will add Mishauli. I was really hoping to go to Cuenca also but it is just too far away to fit into a 10 day trip. Rafting sounds fun and a bit scary, I’m picturing alligators and piranhas. How did you like the beaches? Are they worth a visit or is our time better spent in the amazon?

    Kris

    • This will be a much quicker response now that you’ll booked your ticket. I’d spend more time in Mishuali and the surrounding jungles and Esmeraldas because these two areas are much more culturally vibrant. Otavalo’s market of course has a lot of culture, beautiful crafts, and photo ops at every turn of indigenous peoples, but it’s only a day trip. After a few hours walking around, there isn’t much else to do. Also, you won’t be the only foreigners there—the market very much caters to travelers and it’s not quite as authentic feeling as all the guidebooks make it out to be. I didn’t go to Esmeraldas but it is the center of the country’s black culture, and supposedly has very different food, dance, language, and culture in general. From there I hear you can get away to some secluded, less-visited beaches. If you go to Mishauli, do some tours, get into the jungle, and raft with the tanned, skinny, grey-haired man that has inner tubes on the beach. Ask him to take you to the 500-year-old tree beforehand. The whole trip is a mini-adventure with great scenery. Jump from the bridge mid-way. Don’t worry, the man will find you—he might even remember my French friend and I.

  3. Hey Trevor,

    I am friend of Andy’s. We actually met in the winter of 09 at a CouchSurfing condo party. I’ve been following your adventures and glad to see that your trip has been going well. My husband, Brett and I will be going to Ecuador in a few months. I just looked back at the older posts and see that you took some time off (from cycling) and traveled around Ecuador with a friend. I would love to hear where you went and how you liked it. I’ve been to Colombia and Peru before, is Ecuador much different? You can email me, but if you are too busy I completely understand. Be safe and have a wonderful time.

    Kris

    • I’m happy to hear you’ll visit Ecuador. I have incredible memories of the country, mostly because of the people I met and an American friend who came to visit. It’s different than Colombia and Peru, but not really in a drastic way. Peru’s indigenous culture is everywhere. Peruvian food is amazing. Colombia has incredible beaches, happy people, and stunning tropical scenery. I guess Ecuador is a hybrid of Colombia and Peru, without the memorable food. I traveled to Guayaquil, Banos, Cuenca, Quito, and a few smaller beaches when my friend visited. On the bike I passed through several small villages but nothing that merits a bus visit. Your guidebook has information about all the well-traveled places, like Banos, so I won’t talk about them. However, I recommend spending time in Mishauli at the edge of the Amazon. Go rafting down the river (there is a happy grey-haired man with tubes on the beach—we did it three times!). Do a jungle tour. Visit tribes that maintain traditional jungle practices. Read about ayahuasca and visit a shaman to participate in the ritual. Fish. Relax. Kayak. It’s really a magical place with lots to do. Quito is very international—I recommend the Capilla del Hombre (Chapel of Man) art museum, calentitos in La Mariscal, and some kind of day hike in the surrounding mountains. That’s a good start. Write me with more specific questions once you have ideas of where you want to go.


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