Ecuador Cuenca buildings

Best time to visit Ecuador

Month-by-month guide of when to visit.

Cuenca, Ecuador

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Ecuador offers a wide range of experiences throughout the year. From the bustling cities to the iconic Amazon rainforest and the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador has something to offer for every type of traveller. The best time to visit different parts of Ecuador varies depending on the region and the activities you're interested in. Here's a breakdown of the best times to visit and some notable events:

Quito and the Andes: The best time to visit Quito and the Andes is during the dry season from June to September. The weather is pleasant, with clear skies and mild temperatures. You can explore the historic centre of Quito, a UNESCO World Heritage site, visit the Otavalo Market to experience indigenous culture, and hike through the stunning landscapes of Cotopaxi National Park. In late June, don't miss the colourful Inti Raymi festival in Otavalo, celebrating the summer solstice.

Galapagos Islands: The Galapagos Islands are a year-round destination, but the best time to visit is from December to May when the waters are warmer and more abundant with marine life. You can snorkel with sea lions, spot giant tortoises, and observe unique bird species like the blue-footed booby. In September, you can witness the breeding season of the waved albatross on Española Island.

Amazon Rainforest: The Amazon Rainforest can be visited throughout the year, but the dry season from June to November offers better wildlife viewing opportunities. Explore the Yasuni National Park, go birdwatching, take canoe excursions along the rivers, and learn about the indigenous communities that call the rainforest home. In November, you can experience the Cuyabeno River Turtle Festival, where you can witness the hatching and release of thousands of baby turtles.

Coast and Beaches: The coastal region of Ecuador is best visited from December to May due to preferable weather conditions. However, Ecuador’s coasts have a relatively stable weather pattern year round so there is plenty to enjoy in the of-season such as the beaches of Montañita, or whale watching in Puerto Lopez between June and September. In October, you can attend the colourful Day of the Dead celebrations in Montañita and experience traditional music, dance, and food.

Overall, Ecuador offers a multitude of experiences throughout the year. Whether you're exploring the Andes, the Galapagos Islands, the Amazon Rainforest, or the coastal region, there are plenty of activities and events to make your trip unforgettable. Remember to check specific event dates closer to your travel time to ensure accuracy.

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Ecuador Salinas beach city

January - February

Part of the peak tourist season for the Coast and the Galapagos, and generally the best time to visit these locations due to warmer sea temperatures. Coastal regions enjoy warm temperatures, perfect for beach activities and water sports. The Andes are humid and wet, ideal for exploring cities and visiting indigenous markets, less ideal for hiking but still manageable. The Amazon rainforest is humid and wet, and animal sightings may be more challenging.

Ecuador Quilotoa crater lake

March - May

A pleasant climate across the country and cheaper than December-February. Coastal areas are temperate, and the beaches get quieter as school holidays end. The Andes offer temperatures ranging from 12-21°C (54-70°F), making it more appealing for hiking. For an Easter spectacle, don't miss the Santa Semana celebrations in Quito (check your calendar for when Easter falls). The Amazon rainforest remains humid. In May the beaches are getting cooler, while the Andes experience less rainfall, making hiking more accessible.

Collared Inca H Ummingbird Ecuador

June - September

It's high season in the mountain ranges. Head to Otavalo to celebrate the Incan festival of Inti Raymi for the summer solstice in late June. Along the coast, temperatures range from mild to warm, with occasional rain showers. In the highlands, temperatures are slightly warmer, and the climate is drier, making it better for birdwatching. The Amazon region is hot, humid, and experiences heavy rainfall. September offers reasonable weather for both the coast and highlands, better for hiking than surfing.

Ecuador amazon river

October - November

Best time to visit the Amazon basin due to drier conditions. Alternatively, it is cheaper to visit the Galapagos and the coast at this time because it is too cold for beach activities. A great time to hike the mountains with fewer traveller numbers. In November, the Amazon rainforest continues to have reduced rainfall, making it a great time to spot animals and avoid mosquitoes. Cultural events like Día de los Difuntos take place at the beginning of November.

Ecuador Cuenca Carnaval


In Quito and the Highlands, it's cooler and rainy, but there are many festive events that compensate for the weather such as Fiestas de Quito and Año Nuevo. The Oriente/Amazon region experiences warm and dry weather, with many birds in Parque Nacional Yasuni. Along the coast and Galapagos, it's getting warmer with occasional showers and clear skies, making it a good time to visit the coastline. December sees increasing crowds and higher costs due to festivals and holiday vacations.

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01768 603 715