Destination weddings are becoming increasingly popular, and there are few places as beautiful as Ecuador for tying the knot. Nestled between the Andes Mountains and the Pacific Ocean, Ecuador offers a stunning natural backdrop for your big day. What really makes weddings in Ecuador special is the country’s rich cultural traditions.
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Ecuadorian wedding traditions have a distinct flair. From the colorful attire of the spouses-to-be to the lively music and dancing, weddings in Ecuador are truly unforgettable experiences. If you are looking for something a little different for your nuptials, consider saying “I do” in this beautiful country. When it comes to exotic wedding destinations, look no further than Ecuador.
This small South American country has become the backdrop for many dreamy weddings (including some debonair celebrity ones). Read on to learn about wedding traditions, what sets Ecuadorian weddings apart, and who pays for the wedding in Ecuador.
Who Pays for the Wedding in Ecuador?
Traditionally, the groom’s parents pay for the ceremony, and the bride’s parents pay for the reception. Nowadays, more and more couples are opting to cover their own wedding expenses, with help from their families.
In Ecuador, hiring a wedding planner isn’t the norm but rather a novel practice. Therefore, engaged couples will often first look into getting organized with their families and friends to set up wedding arrangements. Although the traditional way is still practiced, the growing trend in Ecuador is to split the expenses between most or all of the parties involved.
Ultimately, who pays for the wedding in Ecuador is the couple’s choice, although families always play a role.
Quito: Your #1 wedding destination in Ecuador
Ecuador’s capital city of Quito is a premier location for weddings that offers many unique opportunities for a memorable ceremony. Sitting at an altitude of 9,350 feet (2,850 meters) above sea level (the highest capital city in the world), Quito is one of the oldest cities in South America, with a vibrant history. These factors combine to make Quito a truly unique destination for weddings.
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Whether you are looking for an outdoor setting with incredible views of the surrounding mountains or a more traditional indoor location, the city offers a wide range of stunning venues. With year-round average daytime temperatures ranging from 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit (15 to 21 degrees Celsius), Quito is an excellent choice for couples who want to avoid the sweltering heat of a summer wedding.
At Casa Gangotena, we offer tailor-made wedding experiences that include everything you need to make this memorable occasion perfect. Our beautiful courtyard and gardens provide the ideal backdrop for your special day.
Though same-sex weddings are legal and celebrated in Ecuador, they are relatively new and need more time to develop widely recognized traditions. As such, the following information is typical of opposite-sex weddings in Ecuador.
What are weddings like in Ecuador?
Ecuadorian wedding traditions are a mix of Catholic and indigenous influences. One unique tradition is the serenata or serenade. This involves the groom hiring a band to sing to the bride the night before the wedding. The band will typically serenade her outside her window. Another tradition is for brides to wear a laso, or rosary, during the ceremony. The priest places the decorated tether around the couple’s necks to symbolize their union.
As a sort of counter to the bride’s bouquet, the >groom wears a small flower arrangement (like a boutonnière) called azar on the lapel of his suit. At the reception, it is customary for the groom to throw this arrangement to the group of single male friends and relatives. Some traditional weddings hold the throwing of the azar and the bride’s bouquet in tandem and then play at “matching” whoever caught the arrangements.
Little details like this can add a certain flair to your wedding, giving it a different feel from what might be expected elsewhere.
The gastronomic traditions of Ecuador also enable a truly distinctive experience that can make for lasting memories. A wide variety of produce and cooking techniques can be selected to achieve a delectable multi-course meal with options for all tastes.
At Casa Gangotena, we can help you plan your perfect wedding in Ecuador. Contact us today to learn more about our services.
What about the honeymoon?
Honeymoons are a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to celebrate love and new beginnings. Quito offers many romantic options for newlyweds. Spend your days exploring the city’s colonial architecture and stunning scenery. Or take a trip to one of Ecuador’s northern volcanoes (Cotopaxi is the most lauded and surprisingly close to the city proper).
Quito is also close to several nearby sites. From the city of Otavalo and its renowned markets to the incredible Chocó Biosphere, Quito can be the perfect staging ground for romantic outings.
Maybe you want to travel a little further for that “escape from it all” feeling? Ecuador offers all sorts of experiences and unique destinations despite its small size. When planning a honeymoon in a more secluded or natural setting, you should start by picturing the kind of honeymoon you would like.
An Adventure-filled Honeymoon
For the adventurous couple, there is no shortage of activities to keep you busy. Take a trek through the Chocó’sincredible rainforest or go rafting down one of the region’s many rivers.
Wildlife observation is a popular and rewarding activity here as in other parts of Ecuador, like the Amazon or the famed Galapagos Islands.
One of Ecuador’s most worthwhile features comes from its privileged geographic location. Straddling both tropics means the weather is very temperate year-round, and there is no “off-season.”
A Relaxing Honeymoon
Ecuador has just the thing if you want a more relaxed honeymoon experience! Quito’s location makes travel to other destinations in Ecuador quite easy. Whether you stay in the capital city or venture to the Galapagos Islands, the Ecuadorian coast, or the stunning rainforest or mountain, you and your spouse will be treated to a unique experience in a one-of-a-kind destination.
Contact us today to learn more about wedding traditions in Ecuador and how you can plan your ideal destination wedding!