Founded by the Spanish in 1557, Cuenca is the third largest city in Ecuador and one of the most attractive. The old town with cobbled streets, has many churches and houses dating from the XVI and XVII centuries. Most hotels are near the center, which makes this town an ideal location to spend a few days off in a colonial setting.
Its inhabitants are more conservative than the citizens of Quito and the one who does not dress and behave as expected will be the center of attention. From there you can travel about 50 km north to the Inca fortress of Ingapirca, the best preserved pre-colonial vestiges of Ecuador.
The city of Cuenca is located south of Quito, about eleven hours by bus. From the local airport you can fly daily to the capital and Guayaquil. The roads leading to town are not in very good condition and the railway station has been closed for some time.