Street Corner in San Marcos

On my last visit to Historic Quito, a single street sign beckoned me to explore a neighborhood I had never entered, San Marcos. And although my friends and I didn’t make it to the San Marcos Plaza, we did find some treasures that I would like to share. Read More

Early Morning

With two visits to San Jorge de Milpe under my belt, it is time for me to share this hidden treasure of West Slope of the Ecuadorian Andes. If you like the outdoors, this is a lodge you will want to add to your bucket list. Green-crowned BrilliantsNaturalists who love a little bit of everything will find this the perfect location for adventure, even if traveling without a guide. There are beautiful birds that show up to the feeders, hiking trails through lush sub-tropical forests, pools and cascades in shady groves, and benches tucked into hidden corners for those that just want to sit and watch the world go by. Read More

Next Steps

Many of my dedicated readers will remember that I am not living permanently in Ecuador. Our assignment was for three years and the end is in sight. I am sad because leaving Ecuador and all it has to offer will be incredibly hard. And I am happy because new adventure is my middle name. I get itchy feet if we don’t move every so often. And I am looking forward to the next steps.

Variable Hawk PostcardThis news might make many of you wonder what will happen to the Ecuador part of Not Your Average American? I have good news. I have enough content to continuing writing about Ecuador, its lovely people, its stunning places, its beautiful cultures, for at least a year after we leave.
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Barn in Cholila, Argentina

After living a life of crime in the Wild West of the United States, both Butch Cassidy and his sidekick, the Sundance Kid, escaped to South America. Today, it is possible to visit their old cabin near Cholila in the province of Chubut. But the story of Butch Cassidy in Argentina is about much more than a cabin in the woods.

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Take a tour on the Rio Guayas

Built in the year for which it is named, the Malecon 2000 is a modern urban park that attracts hundreds of Guayaquileños each day.

The word malecón means boardwalk or pier in English. Many coastal or river cities in Ecuador have a malecón. But when Guayaquil decided to extend the already existing Malecón Simon Bolívar by 2.5 kilometers at the turn of the century, they built a boardwalk that would stand the test of time. The extension included gardens, museums, fountains, and a commercial center with bars and restaurants. Sixteen years later and the “new” Malecón is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the city.

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Fishing Boat, Puerto Lopez

After being awoken by massive shaking last night, today seems as a good a day as any to let the world know what is going on in “post” earthquake Ecuador. Last night’s 6.7 earthquake was close enough to the epicenter of last month’s 7.8 that it might be considered an aftershock. And though last night’s earthquake was shocking after days of calm, headlines like this one one at CBS News, “Ecuadorians Panic as New Quake Hits Devastated Coast” are not helpful for a couple of reasons.
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Giant Galapagos Tortoise

A tortoise hatchery sounds like a pretty scientific place where you might expect to see cages, enclosures, incubation rooms, and a sterile lab or two. The Galapaguera at San Cristobal will come as quite a surprise.

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Playing Train ConductorThe Nariz del Diablo train ride provides an excellent opportunity to view some of the amazingly beautiful and mountainous landscape of Ecuador. It’s also a great chance for kids to learn a little history while playing conductor. All in all, it is a great trip for families.

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Gauchito Antonio Gil, The Argentine Robin Hood

It was only when we left the big city of Buenos Aires and embarked on a road trip through Southern Argentina that we learned about the Argentine Robin Hood. But the process of learning was a slow one that came step by step along our trail.
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View of Cerro Santa Ana and the Lighthouse

Step #1How many steps to the lighthouse in the Guayaquil do you think it takes to arrive to the top? After several visits to the largest city in Ecuador, I decided to find out.

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