How to get around Quito 1/2
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Travel in Quito is not a complicated task, you just need a few basic facts about the orientation on the streets, the different areas that exist in Quito, and the differences between buses, taxis and integrated transport systems.



PHOTO CREDIT: Modest and Jill

If you walk or drive, you must know that Quito is much longer than wide. Quito has the largest extension from South to North, while it is narrower between the East and West, with the western boundary: the Pichincha volcano. So you can easily move around in Quito, just remember that the great mountain which houses in their borders this city is to the West.


Quito extends towards the South and North, its major road axes within the town are located in that direction. Thus we have the Simon Bolivar Avenue, also called the Nueva Oriental due to its location, because it borders the town of Quito on that side, from Carapungo (North) to Quitumbe (South), being that both ends are close to the new Busses Stations, also known as Terminales Terrestres.


The other axis that borders the city is the so-called “Avenida Occidental”, its original name is Av. Mariscal Sucre (or Antonio José de Sucre), it borders the city from the deviation to the Mitad del Mundo (North) to the South end, where ties with the Panamericana Sur.


The Longitudinal axis of Quito starts from the Panamericana Norte with its continuation, Av. Galo Plaza Lasso. This Avenue changes its name in the road interchange "The Labrador" (southern end of the airport), there starts the avenue called “10 de Agosto”. This last one ends in the historic center of Quito. It is then that takes the humble form of a narrow street, the main vein of the center of Quito and ancient aboriginal ancient route, its name is “Calle Guayaquil”.


The Longitudinal axis continues towards the South when the Guayaquil and Rocafuerte Street are together, to make a new street Pedro Vicente Maldonado Avenue, this is the mean road to travel throughout the extensive South of Quito until it takes the name of Panamericana Sur. This last axis is covered by the integrated trolleybus system.


Quito is mainly divided into three zones: Central, North and South. The Center itself is not located in the real-center of the total length of the city. It is still called the “Centro” since it is the sector from where the city grew. Also called downtown, this part of Quito has narrow streets, some even formed of old colonial stone.


Going by auto by this sector is somewhat difficult. However, by car or on foot, it is not easy to get lost since all streets tend to lead to its Center, specifically to the central square or Plaza Grande.


The North of Quito has much broader streets, long avenues and some exchangers. It has at your disposal two integrated systems of transport (the MetrobusQ and the Ecovia), they go to the center of the city, specifically to the sector of La Marin, known for its numerous shops and high danger. Despite this, it is an important city sector since it is where the majority of routes of buses between the South and the North are articulated. There is also the Playon de La Marin, where there is a small Terminal of buses that go to the Eastern Valley of Quito.


You have to know this

Quito is much more extensive from North to South than to East to West. The northern end of the city is currently the sector of Calderón, in the South is the Tambillo sector.


There are three main bus terminals: two at the ends of Quito (South and North) and one approximately at its Center: La Marin. More information on Buses out of Quito and Bus Terminals in Ecuador.


Be careful with your belongings when you travel by bus in Quito, especially when there are many people in the bus. Beware of pickpockets.


When you travel in private transport services, make sure that they are reliable and recommended. Please read our section Taxis in Quito.


There are a lot of taxis in Quito, as well as several routes of urban and inter parish busses, and three large transport systems that offer their service through much of the entire length of Quito. More information in our section of transport in Quito.

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