When to go to Ecuador
Taking a holiday in Ecuador is a fantastic experience no matter what time of year you go. However, there are some official public holidays that are worth bearing in mind when planning your schedule. If you are planning a tour around Ecuador, our travel advisers can help ensure you are visiting this outstanding country at the best time of year for your plans.
Public holidays observed in Ecuador include:
- New Year's Day (Dia de Ano Nuevo): 1st January
- Maundy Thursday (Jueves Santo): March - April
- Good Friday (Viernes Santo): March - April
- Labour Day (Dia del Trabajo): 1st May
- Battle of Pichincha (Batalla del Pichincha): 24th May
- Declaration of Independence of Quito (Dia del Primer Grito de Independencia de Quito): 10th August
- Independence of Guayaquil (Independencia de Guayaquil): 9th October
- Independence of Cuenca (Independencia de Cuenca): 3rd November
- Foundation of Quito (Dia de Quito): 6th December
- Christmas Day (Dia de Navidad): 25th December
- New Year's Eve (Fin de Ano): 31st December
The national currency in Ecuador is the American Dollar (USD). Our travel experts can advise you on how to get the best exchange rates and what bankcards are accepted.
Tipping is customary in Ecuador and most restaurants will add between 10 per cent and 12 per cent to your bill for the service charge. If you feel the staff have been particularly attentive and welcoming, add a further five per cent to your amount.
However, smaller and cheaper places will not put a service charge on your bill.
Outside of restaurants, tipping is seen as a gesture of goodwill. So if you use any taxi drivers and guides during your holiday in Ecuador, you don't need to tip but it is greatly appreciated if you are happy with the service you receive.
Thanks to the diverse culture, you can expect to experience a wide variety in the dishes on offer across the country. A lot of food focuses on potatoes, rice, and beans wherever you go, but as you near the coast, the amount of spices and seafood used significantly increases.
In major cities, like Quito, there are a wide range of restaurants on offer, with some child-friendly ones in case you are travelling as a family. However, there are also places that offer a more fine-dining experience if you are on your holiday in Ecuador alone or with a partner. The vast majority of restaurants offer a more casual eating experience than you may be used back home.
Laying on the equator, Ecuador gets plenty of sunshine and you can expect to get 12 hours of direct daylight no matter what time of year you visit. However, the climate can change significantly depending on whether you are on the coast, in the mountains, near the rainforest or somewhere in between.
Ecuador's summer and dry season runs between June and September, while a more overcast and muggy climate is found in the wet season. However, towards the end of this season (April/May) is the best time to go if you are looking for a luxury holiday, filled with sunbathing as the temperature is warmer and sunnier.
Of course, the exact weather you get depends on where you are, with it raining most days in the Amazon, while the hilly and mountainous parts of Ecuador are more consistently hot and sunny.
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