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Ecuador & Galapagos Islands: Cuenca

Cuenca, set in the southern sierras at 2,550m, is a quintessential Spanish colonial city. It has the cobbled streets, leafy plazas, baroque churches and whitewashed façades with heavy wooden doors that you’d expect, but the pale-stoned centre is particularly beautiful.

This university town is also a centre for artisan work, notably the panama hat, which originated here, but also ceramics, basket ware, jewellery and ponchos. A quiet, somewhat conservative place, it is the tranquil base for a number of language schools; foreign students can be spied indulging in the many cake shops and cafés. Outside town in the lake-dotted moorlands of the southern sierras is the lovely Cajas National Park.

Our holidays to Cuenca

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Weavers in Cuenca

Signature Ecuador: Volcanoes to the ocean

10 days from £2782pp


Albatross: Ecuador's highlands and Galápagos

16 days from £4427pp

Blue Footed Boobies

Signature Ecuador and Galapagos: Volcanoes to the ocean

16 days from £6788pp

Things to do in Cuenca

Cuenca, Ecuador

Walking tour of Cuenca

Cajas water

Explore Cajas National Park


Learn Spanish in Cuenca

Inca ruins

Visit Ingapirca Inca ruins

What our clients say

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What our experts say

Early one morning I went to the Panama hat factory which was a great experience; we learnt about the production of the hats, their collection and selection and then the factory process to finish them in the recognised shape and all the other final touches.  I would say a visit to this factory is best from Monday to Friday - if you go on Saturday there won't be anyone working there.


Lina Fuller

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