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Ecuador

Discussion in 'Travel' started by ewalk, Mar 3, 2010.

  1. ewalk

    ewalk Empty Pockets

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    I was wondering what would be good for Ecuador travel for 10 days EDC wise... I am not sure the knife laws and all that. What would you bring? Jungle/rain forest, mountains, and the beach are all in the list to see
     
  2. pilote

    pilote Loaded Pockets

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    i'm headed to honduras next week...be interested in the responses here too...
     
  3. Avery

    Avery Empty Pockets

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    I was in Ecuador for 3 weeks back in October. Loved it!

    Took 2 of these http://www.scottevest.com/v3_store/SeV_Tshirt.shtml (short sleeve)
    1 of these http://www.scottevest.com/v3_store/lightweight-wind-jacket.shtml
    2 of these http://www.rei.com/product/784062
    2 pair of socks
    1 button up exoffico airstrip shirt

    Carried it in one of these http://www.gmstactical.com/makoge.html
    Carried camera gear in this http://www.practicaltactical.net/prostores/servlet/-strse-378/SO-Tech-Mission-Go/Detail

    I was able to carry on the two bags by combining them together. The Sitka has a nice strap that allowed me to securely fasten my mission go bag to it thereby making it carryon acceptable. And you can get a lot of stuff into the socttevest in it while you are traveling.

    As far as knifes I didn't really check into the laws. You can buy pretty much whatever you want to carry with you once you get down there.

    I ran into several guys who were robbed, one at gun point, in Quito. One guy's cargo pockets were slit open from the bottom and he lost his wallet. I didn't have one bit of trouble except for the guy whose hand some how found its way into my vest pocket.

    My recommendation is to travel light and wash your clothes in a sink every couple of days.

    I am currently considering moving down there, its a great place with friendly people.
     
  4. Joe S

    Joe S Loaded Pockets

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    It's been a few years since I was there, but I loved Ecuador. Didn't spend much time in Quito, but did see a few rough neighborhoods. Take the same precautions as in any other big cities (stay out of unfamiliar neighborhoods alone and at night, keep your drinking in your hotel/hostel, don't be flashy with stuff and money, try not to be loud or rude). The only time I actually got a strong feeling of sketchy was the main bus depot in Quito. Watch the pickpockets there, and the weekend market in Otovalo.

    The people in general are not overly smiley, but are definitely friendly and polite. I did fine with a few pleasantries and numbers (other than when an ATM ate my card on a weekend, and my traveling partner used his charm and fluent Spanish to get them to open up the machine and rescue my card, so we could leave town and keep to our itinerary).

    Overwhelmingly, it's a cash economy, and do barter/make sure you're not grossly overcharged.

    Make sure you allow yourself enough time. There's a lot to do in Ecuador, from mountain hiking, to the artisan's markets, to real bohemian urban living in the capital, to the beach, and some pretty good kayaking/rafting in the jungle. If you are hurting for a good cup of coffee after a few weeks (rather than the instant that seems very prevalent), do check out Cafe Hood in Banos, a beautiful little town that I highly suggest. The Leprechaun Bar there sometimes plays American rock music if you're feeling homesick, and there are a number of very cheap but good hostels there.

    If you have any more specific questions, feel free to e-mail or PM. I used to have family living there, and can always find out more specifics for you.

    Joe S.
     
  5. ewalk

    ewalk Empty Pockets

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    Thanks everyone with your replys. All good info. It helps to have first hand info. I did have a question around Banos. If you go in the hot springs, what do you do with all of your stuff? Passport, money ....
     
  6. Avery

    Avery Empty Pockets

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    ewalk, I used a Pacsafe wire mesh thingy and in instances like going to a hot spring or just leaving stuff in my hotel room I would leave stuff locked in my bag attached to something stout in the room. Not a perfect solution but I never lost anything due to theft.

    Here is a link to what I am talking about.
     
  7. ewalk

    ewalk Empty Pockets

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    Avery,

    I have seen those before. I bet they work well. Money permiting, I would either have done that or the bookbags they make that have the mess built in. Maybe in the future... Thanks for the info though! I am glad to hear that they work and it definitly encourages me to get one in the future.
     
  8. Avery

    Avery Empty Pockets

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    Hey ewalk, I just noticed your PM and tried to respond but apparently I need to have more posts under my belt in order to do so. I hope you dont mind but I will just post my answer to your question here.

    Here is what I tried to respond with:

    Hey Erik,

    I just noticed you sent me this PM. Sorry for the delayed response.

    I took a little net book with me. I cant find it now to tell you what brand it was but I bought it at Best Buy and it was just under $300 bucks. The neat thing was the ability to communicate with it. I took a Magic Jack and my wife and friends could call me on a local US number, as long as I was on the internet. Skype was a great way to communicate also. Most every hostel has wifi and it works pretty well. There are lots of internet cafe's and posting to your blog and getting your emails wont be a problem. I just have a hard time with Latin computers, they are set up a little different than what I'm used to.

    You don't need to take a computer if all you want to do is store photos. If your camera uses SD or some other card just take a couple hight capacity cards and you should be good to go.

    Travel light, and have a great time. The beauty of Ecuador is amazing. Let me know if you have any more questions. My email is althe111@gmail.com

    Take care,

    Avery
     
  9. Brangdon

    Brangdon Loaded Pockets

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    I was in Ecuador for 2 weeks last November. I didn't have any problems, but I was mostly with a tour group. I had my usual knives and tools, which are UK-safe, but I didn't flaunt them and nobody seemed to care anyway.

    I'd recommend you carry a torch and loo-paper. There were a couple of times I was glad I had them. When I was there, the rainy season was late, leading to a lot of power-cuts (they use hydro-electric a lot).

    You should have one or more photocopies of your passport on you always. Then you can leave your original passport somewhere safe. They don't like you to have no ID at all, but a copy is usually OK.

    I was advised against drinking local water. I don't normally carry bottled water in the UK, but I did there. We were advised against buying lots of 500ml bottles for ecological reasons. Instead, have one and refill it. If you have a Steripen or similar, take it and purify the tap water.

    Even when it is cold and cloudy, you need sun lotion because (in Quito) you are at the Equator and also very high up, so the ultra-violet is strong. A lot of my party made that mistake the first day. Obviously in the rain forest you'll want anti-bug protection.

    Personally I think a cap or hat with a good peak is better than sunglasses. You see more. It'll also offer more protection in the rain.

    Otherwise, it's mostly the usual holiday stuff.
     
  10. 1holegrouper

    1holegrouper Loaded Pockets

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    First of all, congrats and have fun!

    This is from personal experience and in order of priority, sort of:

    * wear a money belt; only have in it money, dr license, minimal credit card(s) and your passport. Never part from this, even for a few seconds. Be religeous about it.
    *pack as light as possible, dress as casual as feasible, wash your clothes on the go and make sure the materials will dry overnight. Ex Officio, Columbia, TNF, REI; stuff like that- do NOT check in any bags- or then consider them lost
    *have layers so you can adjust to expected and unexpected weather along with some bug and sun goop
    * take some toilet paper (pop the roll out and squish it), Immodium and Pepto Bismal tablets and some basic FAK items
    *have 'some' local currency before you get there. This gets you past the first line of folks looking for marks. Also, you then have more flexibility when you get there and can get to a place with a more favorable exchange rate.
    *avoid being alone when out and about; be mindful but not overly paranoid, the people who usually get robbed or slashed are the easy marks, they are lugging a lot of luggage, look and act naive or scared , look rich and are usually alone. You will feel absolutely safe probably all the time but be mindful and prepped just in case your assessment is wrong.
    *put a copy of your passport in your luggage and leave a copy at home. leave names, places and numbers you plan to visit with your loved ones at home as well.

    *avoid wearing anything that looks too military- this is true especially in Latin America. Those are the two extremes to avoid; looking military or looking too touristy
     
  11. MartinTravels

    MartinTravels Empty Pockets

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    How fun! I'm jealous! :)

    A few suggestions:

    - Clothesline
    - Steripen
    - Multitool (EDC)
    - Sunglasses (EDC)
    - Bandana (EDC)
    - Zippered pocket on shirt or shorts (EDC)
    - Language booklet
    - Sunblock
    - Pen (EDC)
    - Immodium AD
    - Ziplock Bags
    - TP
    - Small FAK (pack a sterile needle or two)
    - Paper (EDC)
    - Flashlight (EDC)
    - Hand Sanitizer (EDC)
    - Carabiner
    - Passport/Cash/Card (EDC)
    - Book (novel)
    - Ecuador Travel Guide Book
    - Camera (EDC)
    - Lighter/Cigarettes (EDC)
    - Candy/Gum (EDC)

    The last two are conversation starters and cheap bribes if needed. Have fun! You will have to check a bag to get a multitool/FAK to Ecuador. US Dollars work just fine for currency.
     
  12. ewalk

    ewalk Empty Pockets

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    Will I have to check my first aid kit? I was wondering about that. I do not think I have many if any liquids in it. What do you think would stop it from going? I will have to post a list of stuff I am bringing too!
     
  13. MartinTravels

    MartinTravels Empty Pockets

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    I think if you have liquids/needles/razor blades/shears or anything suspicious in your FAK you will need to check your bag. Not worth the risk to try and carry it on.
     
  14. saniterra

    saniterra Loaded Pockets

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    In Ecuador, the US dollar is the official currency.
     
  15. ewalk

    ewalk Empty Pockets

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    ugh... probably need to rethink things a bit. getting down to the wire and would rather not go through the hassle of tossing stuff at the airport. Also no check bags officially!!! So everything goes into a 30L bag.
     
  16. ewalk

    ewalk Empty Pockets

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    Just got back from 2 weeks in Ecuador. Thanks everyone for you suggestions. A few things I did not bring enough of(my own fault): Sunglasses(which I bought there for cheap), a ball cap(everyone wore them there and I bought a cheap one there) and sunscreen(taking certain malaria meds makes you very sensitive to the sun and I got burnt the first day. Use it often!)

    I was able to get a cheap box cutter knife that I was able to use for most of my cutting needs. It was worth the 25 cents. Most cities had a lot of police and armed guards at most ATM's also so it was surprisingly safe. I would suggest anyone who wants to see South America for the first time to go there. Very easy to get around also.