Since Kathleen (Awayback) had to fly home via Quito, I decided to fly with her to Quito and stay a few days since, in the past, I'd only been there as a 1-night transition to Cuenca. Cost? $49 roundtrip air from Cuenca....about a 45 minute flight each way. When she flew down, she stayed near the Mariscal, a trendy neighborhood in the 'new town' area. She had fun partying at the Foch square and wanted to spend more time checking things out.
We stayed in a very nice remodelled old colonial hotel called Casa Foch...just 2 blocks from the main party square. We had a large room with a queen bed and 2 singles, including breakfast, for $65 a night.
First thing on our agenda on Day #1 was the Teleferico....an aerial tram that takes you from Quito's 9,000 feet base to nearly 13,000 feet up the side of a volcano. The trip up was breathtaking....literally and figuratively. The city of Quito layed below us and, luckily, it was a clear day so we could see all the way to the snow-covered volcano in Cotopaxi which is about a 2 hour drive from Quito.
When this development was built, it had grand plans. A convention hall, disco, restaurants, shops, overnight accomodations, and even an amusement park were built. But, most of it died out when the business didn't come. All that is left is the amusement park at the base of the lift, and a gift and snack shop at the top...the rest is empty lifeless buildings. Even so, the vista at the top was amazing, and we weren't even at the top of the volcano!!
Ever try to breath at 13,000 feet AND walk? EEESH!!! Just going up and down a few stairs winded me. While at the top, Kathy and I got some funny photos taken (see below).
|At the base.|
|.....and UPPPP!!! That's the base and amusement park you see below.|
|The top of the volcano is that jagged area up ahead...another couple thousand feet up. No thanks.|
|Me, barely breathing, at the summit.|
|What I wanted to do to Kathleen at times.|
|What she wanted to do to me MOST of the time!|
|Going DOWWWWWN!!!! (look how small those other aerial cars are!!)|