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Highlands of Ecuador

When is the best time to visit Ecuador?

The best time to visit Ecuador depends on which area of the country you travel to. The weather variations are usually the result of regional differences and micro-climates, rather than clearly defined seasons. There is a drier season from June to September in the highlands, for example, but the ‘four seasons in a day’ phenomenon can happen at any time.

On Ecuador’s coast, the wet season is the best time to visit – temperatures are warmer and rain usually falls in short bursts in the afternoon, so you can still enjoy sunny mornings.

Ecuador’s cultural attractions and sightings of wildlife on the mainland can be enjoyed year-round, as can hiking or more gentle touring in the Avenue of the Volcanoes. Similarly, the Amazon and the cloud forests delight visitors whatever the season.

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Ecuador Climate Guide

Destination Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
The Amazon 84°F 8" 86°F 8" 84°F 10" 84°F 13" 84°F 13" 82°F 14" 82°F 11" 84°F 7" 86°F 10" 86°F 12" 86°F 12" 86°F 9"
Cuenca 70°F 3" 70°F 3" 68°F 4" 68°F 5" 68°F 3" 66°F 1" 66°F 1" 66°F 1" 68°F 2" 70°F 3" 70°F 3" 70°F 3"
The Galapagos Islands 82°F 3" 84°F 3" 86°F 3" 86°F 2" 82°F 1" 79°F 1" 75°F 1" 75°F 1" 75°F 1" 75°F 1" 77°F 1" 79°F 1"
Guayaquil 88°F 7" 88°F 8" 88°F 9" 88°F 6" 88°F 2" 84°F 0" 84°F 0" 84°F 0" 86°F 0" 86°F 0" 86°F 0" 88°F 1"
Otavalo 70°F 3" 70°F 4" 70°F 5" 68°F 5" 70°F 4" 70°F 2" 70°F 1" 72°F 1" 72°F 2" 70°F 4" 70°F 5" 70°F 3"
Quito 66°F 5" 66°F 6" 66°F 7" 66°F 7" 66°F 5" 66°F 2" 68°F 1" 68°F 1" 68°F 3" 68°F 5" 66°F 5" 68°F 4"

Month-by-month guide to traveling in Ecuador

Countryside around Otavalo, Ecuador

Visiting Ecuador in January - May

The coolest and wettest period to visit Ecuador is between January and May, but most of the time rainfall presents itself in afternoon showers. Many people still choose to travel to Ecuador at this time as the the waters around the Galapagos Islands are at their warmest and calmest.

Events & Festivals

  • Semana Santa (the week before Easter): Semana Santa sees religious parades across Ecuador, with the Good Friday processions in Quito a particular highlight. Read more
Birdlife in the Mindo cloudforest

Visiting Ecuador in June - September

Officially the driest and warmest months to visit the Ecuadorian mainland. Visitors can often enjoy clear blue Andean skies and warm sunshine. Fewer showers also make for more prolonged periods to enjoy birdwatching in the cloudforests. This is also the peak time to visit neighbouring Peru, so early planning is advisable.

Events & Festivals

  • Corpus Christi (June): Corpus Christi, falling shortly after Trinity Sunday, is particularly celebrated around Cotopaxi and in the highlands. Many villages have their own traditional costumes, music and dance.
El Cajas National Park, Ecuador

Visiting Ecuador in October - December

Towards the end of the year, as the South American national holidays approach and the waters around the Galapagos become calmer again, this is a popular time to visit Ecuador, so early booking is again advisable.

Events & Festivals

  • Day of the Dead/All Soul’s Day (2nd November): Families commemorate lost loved ones with flowers and visits to cemeteries, and consume purple coloada morada - a traditional drink made from black cornflower and fruits.
  • Independence Celebrations (9th October): If you happen to be in the coastal city of Guayaquil for the Independence Day, you can expect street parties, fireworks and an infectious lively atmosphere. Read more
  • The Foundation of Quito Festival (6th December): Street parties and parades are seen on the capital’s cobbled streets. Read more

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Travel advice

Practical tips for traveling to Ecuador, from social protocols to guidance on money matters, with a link to the latest government travel advice.

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