We get asked some colourful questions about life in Ecuador, so I thought I’d answer a few, starting with the basics!
- So where is Ecuador anyway?
Ecuador is located in South America, bordered by Colombia to the North, Peru to the East and South, and the Pacific Ocean to the West. It also includes the Galapagos Islands.
- Is it safe there?
Yes. We have spent time in Otavalo, Quito, and Guayaquil. Everywhere in the world there is the risk of theft, more so in larger cities. We have been cautioned by many against walking alone or hailing taxis off the street in Guayaquil and are much more conscious of our safety there. We don’t walk around with valuables and I am always conscious of where my bag or phone is.
In Otavalo we have heard of cell phone theft or purse theft, but quite rarely, and of course this could happen to you anywhere. As far as personal safety, we try to always be conscious of our surroundings, but have never felt threatened here. I walk around and sometimes run alone in town and surrounding areas and have had no issues. I have lived in places where I tried to avoid walking alone if at all possible, and I can tell you I feel much different here. I feel as comfortable as I did in our big city in Canada.
- Why did you choose Ecuador?
As many of you know, before living in Ecuador we spent a year living in Kenya. We loved exploring a new country and culture, living simply, and spending much of our time volunteering. We knew we wanted to continue this type of life and had narrowed down criteria that would hopefully work for us long term:
- Climate ~ While we enjoy the sun, crazy heat everyday is a challenge for us
- Availability of Visas ~ Long term visa availability that would allow us to stay
- Cost of living ~ We needed to be able to live within our small budget
- Internet ~ We had to have fast internet to be able to work
- Language ~ Somewhere where the Sign Language was close to ASL so we could volunteer right away
Plus, Isaac had always liked Ecuador, so it was a great fit!
Those are a few of the common ones, leave me a comment with any question you have or what you’d like to know!
By the way, that’s the Imbabura volcano behind Otavalo in the photo that I’ll be climbing on Monday!!!