While many travelers are restricted by holiday plans and tight schedules, those who have more flexibility and decide to stay at Casa Gangotena for longer than an overnight stopover will find themselves immersed in the incredibly rich culture of Quito and pampered by the luxurious Casa Gangotena experience.
However, regardless of whether your stay is long and adventurous or short and sweet, Casa Gangotena and Quito together will provide you with a truly unforgettable experience. While there is no specific recommendation regarding an ideal length of stay, there are many fascinating activities and amazing sights our guests can enjoy if they are staying at Casa Gangotena for one night, two nights or even longer!
What can I experience if I only stay at Casa Gangotena for one night?
As Casa Gangotena is snuggled in the very heart of Quito’s historic center, a one-night stay allows guests to explore the timeworn cobblestone streets by foot for a basic sense of the colorful Ecuadorian culture. Something that should not be missed is a visit to one of the many churches located near the hotel, such as the Campañia de Jesus Church with its stunning Baroque architecture and overindulgence in gold and intricate designs. Another intriguing destination is the nearby San Marcos neighborhood, which gives tourists a unique insight into a day in the life of a Quiteño in the historic district. Regardless of the engrossing activities packed into your itinerary, it can always be topped off by Casa Gangotena’s mouth-watering dining experience followed by one of its renowned house-crafted cocktails.
No matter what you decide to visit on the day you are in Quito, you soon realize that the historic center of the city offers so many more places to visit than what can possibly be squeezed into a single day. Therefore, for our more intrepid guests, we recommend that you have a clear plan before you arrive to make the most of your time. Take some time to read through the Top 15 Visitor Sites located near Casa Gangotena for more details.
What else can I do if I stay at Casa Gangotena for two nights?
While the sheer number of visitor sites surrounding Casa Gangotena can be overwhelming, staying an extra night at the hotel will undoubtedly contribute to your ability to enjoy a greater number of them. The museums located in and around the historic center of Quito host a wide range of interesting artefacts from Quito’s vibrant past. The Museo del Alabado holds 5,000 pre-Columbian archaeological pieces, painting a riveting picture of Ecuador’s long history. If you want something a little more modern, the Centro Cultural Metropolitano challenges the mind with many thought-provoking and constantly changing art and social exhibits.
But perhaps you want something a little more focused on how things are done in Ecuador, a tour of the Palacio de Gobierno, which can be arranged a day in advance, allows visitors to get a true feeling of what the Ecuadorian government is all about. Of course, trying to make the statue-like guards at the front entrance laugh gives every visitor a challenge. If possible, time your visit so that you can watch the impressive Changing of the Guards ceremony at 11 o’clock on Monday mornings, where pomp and ceremony are in full swing and you might even catch a glimpse of the President waving from the gleaming white balcony of the Palace.
Between visitor sites, Casa Gangotena also offers a variety of tours, exclusive to its guests, that are filled with delicious treats and particularly insightful information. Every day there is something new, which means you will not want to miss out! The San Francisco Beer Museum Tour leads visitors into the old San Francisco brewery that was once run by the friars in the San Francisco Convent. The historic beer-making process is explained in detail, guests are free to examine the many old tools on display, and are then treated to a flight of beers.
And what about chocolate? Ecuador is known for its excellent cocoa and chocolate production. Allow the head chef of Casa Gangotena to lead you through the chocolate-making process while nibbling on samples from the country’s different regions. It is surprising how different environmental factors have such a significant impact on the final flavor of each piece of chocolate.
There are many more exclusive tours offered to the guests of Casa Gangotena, including private tours through some of the historic center’s museums and the history of Casa Gangotena itself. Every tour has been specifically designed to deepen your experience and flood your knowledge with tidbits of fascinating information.
And what if I stay at Casa Gangotena for three or more nights?
Do not fear if you plan to stay longer! There are so many things to see and so much fun to have! Casa Gangotena is located just 15.5 mi (25 km) from the equator, and the world-renowned Mitad del Mundo complex there welcomes visitors to step into both halves of the world at the same time and learn about the phenomena that occur at the center of the world. This is a particularly uplifting experience after the Casa Gangotena Exclusive Chocolate Tour because it turns out that we weigh less on the equator due to centrifugal force (Ask the guides for more details!). There are several display rooms throughout the complex that cover compelling scientific, archeological, and Ecuadorian cultural aspects, making the trip to Mitad del Mundo all the more interesting.
Perhaps after visiting so many tourist sites you would be interested in experiencing true Ecuadorian life. Sangolqui, a small town about 30 minutes east of Casa Gangotena, makes for a great day visit. Upon entering the town, you soon smell why it is famous: Large whole-roasted pigs that have been marinated in a special sauce and cooked in an oven hang on display in the massive open market! In fact, similar recipes to this, but reimagined and more contemporary, can be found on the venerated Cocina Mestiza menu of the restaurant at Casa Gangotena. While the clean and cheery central plaza is a great place to enjoy the traditional helado de paila, or fruit ice cream made with shaven ice.
If you prefer to stay in the city, the artisanal market where Ecuadorian souvenirs and products can be found makes for a fascinating trip, as does relaxing in one of Quito’s many parks. Located on the western flank of the city, the Teleferico gondola soars 1,100 m (3,600 ft) above the capital, offering spectacular 360° views of Quito and the mountains that surround it, including several volcanoes. If you are feeling energetic, there is a 3-hour hike up to the mountain closest to the Teleferico, which offers guests the feeling of quite literally being on top of the world.
Different suburbs around Quito offer distinctive vibes, such as the café and restaurant hub of La Floresta or the party center of La Mariscal. Further from the historic center, Cumbaya, Quito’s newer and more developed suburb, offers beautiful warm and sunny weather and several boutique shops and malls. One hour to the east of Quito, Papallacta boasts natural hot springs, world-class facilities, and multiple spas offering relaxing massages and other rejuvenating treatments. Many more options can be discussed with Casa Gangotena’s concierge, depending on your interests.
The places to visit and things to see in Quito are nearly endless. There is something for everyone and, furthermore, Casa Gangotena in and of itself offers a unique experience that provides every guest with something to remember. So, although it would be impossible to give a concise answer as to how long you should stay, the countless things to see and do, coupled with the luxury and class-leading service provided by Casa Gangotena, will leave you wishing you could stay longer.