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Easter Saturday at the Equator: Cayambe and Quitsato Sundial

Cayambe, Quitsato Sundial, the Line of the Equator and Quito

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We were only in Cayambe for about twenty minutes because we were there to get a taxi to our next destination. We did however make sure to buy some 'biscochos', the town's speciality. These are very buttery biscuits sold in fingers. Then on to the line of the Equator! The Quitsato Sundial is at the roadside about 3km south of Cayambe, on the road to Quito. This place is very untouristy in comparison to the much more famous Mitad Del Mundo complex, which is a tourist trap and peddles several equator myths as if they are facts. The Quitsato Sundial is much more scientific.


The sundial is huge; big enough to walk around on. I would guess the diameter to be about 50 metres. We had a talk (in English) about the site and about the work of the Quitsato Project. We found out such interesting information as the fact that from the Equator you can see all the constellations visible in both hemispheres, that many pre-Inca sites have been discovered in the area that align exactly with the position of the sun at various equinoxes etc., that the Equator runs right through Volcano Cayambe (a snow-covered peak that we could see from where we were standing), and that the word 'north' means 'left' and is so called because it is on your left as you face east, the direction of the rising sun.


After the talk we couldn't resist taking photos of us standing with a foot in each hemisphere, standing on the exact Equator, etc., some including a post at the centre of the sundial that announces that it is at 0 degrees latitude.


To get back to Quito we flagged down a passing bus and jumped on. It was around 7:30 by the time we got back to the hostel.

For dinner Emma, Mark, Andrew and I went to a Cuban restaurant round the corner, but it wasn't a great experience because the service was so incredibly slow, despite the fact that there was only one other group of customers there. I've been in Ecuador for nearly a year now and have never experienced service that slow before. My rice pudding was lovely but the portion was very small.

Posted by 3Traveller 10:18 Archived in Ecuador Tagged mountains hostel sisters quito andes ecuador cayambe ecuadorian_cuisine quitsato_sundial the_equator easter_celebrations

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That was such a lovely day. I miss Ecuador!

by Emma

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