Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Corpus Christi week in Cuenca, Ecuador and new City Tour bus

The first day I was in Cuenca we went on the Double Decker City tour bus and I was cold and tired from the long flight, so when I saw a new city tour bus I took the tour again. This time it was warmer and much more enjoyable and it got us away from all the candy in El Centro!

This is the first city tour bus

This is the new bus we took this time on the City tour

                                        I sat on the top deck in the fresh air and sunshine

The first floor on this new bus has tables with comfortable swivel chairs and a bar, and along with the narration of the history of Cuenca  you will see a video of Cuenca with recommendations for Hotels and Restaurants.

The City Tour is two hours and is just $5!

              Park Calderon in El Centro - this is where the buses depart everyday starting at 11 am.

                             Cuenca is always clean - I never see dirt or trash on any the the streets

Catedral El Sagrario, also known as Catedral Antiguo, on the east side of Parque Calderón, was the first church in Cuenca; as such, it’s the place to start your first church tour of El Centro. The cornerstone of the original mud-and-straw chapel built on this site in 1557, shortly after Cuenca was founded, was taken from the Inca palace at Pumapungo (next to the Museo del Banco Central). The church was in continuous use till the early 20th century, when the Catedral Nuevo opened across the square; it was completely restored between 1999 and 2005.

We drove through old historic neighborhoods that have been restored along with electrical wiring placed underground.

Iglesia San Sebastian marks the western edge of colonial El Centro in the middle of a plaza on Talbot between Mariscal Sucre and Simon Bolivar. With the bright white walls of the old church and the tall trees and well-tended horticulture, this plaza is almost as inviting as Calderón. At the other end of Sucre and Bolivar on Ordoñez is Iglesia San Blas. Dating back to 1575 and built with stone from Pumpaungo, the church and its square mark the eastern edge of El Centro.

The old Inca city ruins

And up the hill to Turri:

And up four flights of stairs to a Restaurant in Turri with great views of the City - when ever Bryan has time to go somewhere with me he is usually a few stairs or blocks ahead of me waiting!

Great views of the city from up here

See the three steeples of the Main Cathedral in El Centro

                               Back to El Centro through another restored Historic neighborhood

Displays of candy for sale surround Park Calderon for seven days, this is a traditional Catholic Celebration of the Body of Christ!

I am sure the local Dentists love this time of year!

Anyone for a horse and buggy ride?

And on to the new Catheral of Cuenca:

The construction of the new cathedral took quite a few years to complete. Construction had started in 1885, but building was staggered over the years so the cathedral was only completed in 1967. But the wait was worth-while and today people can enjoy looking at the magnificent blue and white domes that decorate the skies, the pink marbled floors, gold applications by the altar, stained glass windows and marble and alabaster facades. Both the New and Old Cathedrals of Cuenca are worthy attractions in Ecuador and even the most novice architectural enthusiast will be able to appreciate the beauty and splendor of these buildings.

Entrance to the new Catheral

My first time inside the Cathedral, I understand they are giving tours of the tombs of Priests and Church officials below the Church. The entrance is to the left of the Altar.

There are 53 Catherals in Cuenca surrounding the old city.

And the end of another relaxing beautiful  day in Cuenca, Ecuador - until next time be happy!


  1. Thank you for the time and comments !! Bob, Phoenix

  2. How gorgeous, my plan is to show up there soon and experience this all for myself, just like you're fdoing Gary.

    1. There is some beautiful country to see here.

  3. This area of Ecuador is very much to my liking, plan to retire and move to Cuenca, really looking forward to being all settled in a year from now

    1. Let me know when you arrive so we can have coffee.

  4. Nice post Gary! Keep up the good work. Maybe I can meet you someday!

  5. GREAT post Gary...sending it on to some friends who are planning to visit in a couple of months...

    1. Thank you so much for your continued support! I know you love living in Cuenca too!

  6. Gary, I have enjoyed reading about your adventures. My friend and I are coming mid September to see for ourselves if this is our retirement home. Hopefully while there we could meet up and chat a bit about moving to Cuenca??


    1. Let me know when you are in Cuenca and we can meet up for coffee!