Top 10 interesting facts about Ecuador that you don’t know
Preparing for the journey, everyone wants to know the maximum information about the new country. Distant Ecuador, certainly, is not the exception! Ecuador is the smallest independent country in South America. It received its name due to its unique geographical location. As usual there are many facts, rumors and gossips. We offer to get to know the top 10 interesting facts about Ecuador that you don’t know and that will be useful at the planning stage of the trip. Whether they are true you will find out after going on a tour.
- The name of the country was received thanks to the equator, which is 25 km north from the capital – Quito. In 1979 the officials fixed a 30-meter tower topped with a globe on the place, which pass the line of equator. The monument is located in the Park “Mitad del Mundo” or “Middle of the world”. Annually Mitad del Mundo is visited by about half a million people.
- Ecuador is the friendliest country in the world where there is a visa-free regime for citizens of all countries without exception.
- Ecuadorians mainly live off their rich natural resources. They export oil, rice, shrimp, bananas, coffee, fish, flowers, sugar cane, cocoa and forest. While Ecuador is the only country in the world that refused to pay its foreign debts not so much by reason of its financial insolvency, but because of the principle.
- Not everyone knows that Ecuador is an oil country. Oil production is about 500,000 barrels per day. But, besides oil, the major exports of Ecuador are cocoa, bananas and coffee. So in a sense, Ecuador is indeed a “banana republic.” Ecuador can rightly be proud of wearing the title “banana republic”, as this country gets fourth place in the world in banana exports after India, China and Brazil. But as for imports, Ecuador prohibits the importation of cars into the country, which are older than one year.
- The Galapagos Islands were declared as a UNESCO world heritage and world biosphere Reserve. It is the exact place where Charles Darwin was ready to create the evolutionary theory of the origin of species. The Galapagos Islands are a unique nature reserve themselves, part of the Islands are still under development. They received the fame due to the inhabitance of the world largest turtles. By the way, the island got its name thanks to these Galapagos turtles, not vice versa.
- Have you been thinking that Panama hat appeared in Panama? It is not true! First Panama hats, that later became popular all over the world, appeared in Ecuador. “Panama hat” was so called in the United States and Europe only because it was imported from Panama.
- Ecuador is the country with the most equable climate on the planet. The average temperature in July is +25°C, while the temperature in January is +24°C. In combination with temperature variations there are no hurricanes, typhoons, cyclones and anticyclones, but there might be about 200 earthquakes in a year above magnitude 4.
- One of the volcanoes in Ecuador, Cotopaxi is the highest (5 897 m) active volcanoes in the world. By the way, for the last 280 years, it has erupted approximately 50 times. It can be considered as one of the main sights of Ecuador. It is a volcano with a perfect cone shape. Numerous tourists with ropes, ice picks and clamps visit it in attempt to conquer the Ecuadorian peak. The local Amerindians called volcano like this, because of the permanent ice top. The top is so high that the rays of the sun can’t melt the eternal ice.
- Car tours to Ecuador are getting increasingly popular. Therefore, it should be taken into the note that all members of car accident, no matter guilty or not, are taken to prison before clarification of the circumstances of the accident that resulted in serious injury or death.
- During elections and referendums in Ecuador all citizens must participate in obligatory way. In case of avoidance they will pay a fine. It is an interesting fact that from 1996 to 2006, the country has changed 10 presidents.