Perched in spectacular glory in the midst of the Andes and with a UNESCO World Heritage site to boot, Quito, the capital city of Ecuador, will take your breath away in more ways than one. With restaurants and nightlife to suit any taste, indigenous markets pulsing with energy and an array of lookouts offering breathtaking panoramas over the city, many travelers to Quito hostels find themselves reluctant to leave. Possibilities for day trips are seemingly endless with easy bus connections and tours on offer to places in and around the city.
Hostels in Quito are congregated mainly in the Mariscal Sucre neighbourhood, the so-called “new town” that’s awash in businesses designed to capture tourist dollars; from international restaurants, to boutique hotels, to cafes and bars and internet cafes, backpackers of every stripe can be found wandering its streets. Just a 20-minute walk away – but worlds apart – is another prime location for Quito hostel: the “old town”, which is the UNESCO World Heritage colonial center, is steeped in history and offers a lively and authentic glimpse of vibrant local culture. Both neighborhoods can be reached by public transit from the airport and bus stations.
Crime can still be a problem when you stay at a Quito hostel, however, so keep your eyes open and one hand on your bags. With a dose of common sense and some reasonable precautions, though, many travelers have no trouble in Quito.