Top things to do

Top Choice Museum in Cuenca

Museo del Banco Central ‘Pumapungo’

One of Ecuador's most significant museums, Pumapungo houses great modern art downstairs, but the highlight is on the second floor. Here begins a comprehensive voyage through Ecuador's diverse indigenous cultures, wi…
Top Choice Museum in Cuenca

Museo de las Culturas Aborígenes

This indigenous culture museum has more than 5000 archaeological pieces representing more than 20 pre-Columbian Ecuadorian cultures going back some 15,000 years. But what makes this such a gem of a museum is the inf…
Top Choice Monument in Loja

Puerta de la Ciudad

With perhaps more pomp and circumstance than you'll encounter anywhere else in Loja, the City Gate greets you into downtown from the northern corner. It's a giant castle with an arched doorway spanning Sucre, a stre…
Top Choice Colombian in Cuenca

Moliendo Café

This is one of the best little eateries you'll find in Ecuador – and that's why Moliendo Café is always rammed. The hearty arepas (maize pancakes) herald from Ecuador's northern neighbors but are a specialty here, t…
Top Choice Microbrewery in Loja

Zarza Brewing Company

In the El Valle neighborhood, this brewpub is as popular with locals as with Loja expats. The owner is Texan and clearly knows a thing or two about microbrewing and Mexican food. They do unusual-for-Ecuador brews su…
Top Choice Jazz in Cuenca

Jazz Society Café

The performance venue of the Jazz Society of Ecuador provides soothing aural therapy with Ecuadorian musicians as well as international artists. The Jazz Society also cultivates young local talent, and though there'…
Top Choice Museum in Loja

Museo de la Música

This fun museum located in an old school explores the lives of famous musicians who hailed from Loja (most peaking in success during the golden 1890–1940 period). Many old instruments and scores of music are on disp…
Top Choice Fusion in Saraguro

ShamuiCo Espai Gastronòmic

A surprising find in Saraguro, this unpretentiously sophisticated spot is run by a local chef who trained in some of Europe's best restaurants. Bold cuisine falls somewhere along the lines of highland Ecuadorian tap…
Top Choice Church in Cuenca

El Sagrario

Standing across the park from the new cathedral, the whitewashed El Sagrario is also known as the 'old cathedral.' Construction began in 1557, the year Cuenca was founded, and in 1739 La Condamine’s expedition used …
Top Choice Church in Cuenca

Catedral de la Inmaculada Concepción

Also known as the ‘new cathedral,’ construction began on this vast cathedral only in 1885. Its giant domes of sky-blue Czech tile are visible from all over Cuenca, and if it looks like the bell towers are bit short,…