Ecuador Day 23: Quito Botanical Garden

Palabra del día: jardín

We have a blissfully quiet morning, sleeping in until the sun is high at 8am. The morning markets of Quito is already bustling when we get breakfast at the panaderia. We walk from Old Town to the Mariscal Sucre district, pausing at Foch Plaza. A hopeful sunglasses salesman follow us for 3 blocks attempting to get us to buy something from him.

Our real destination is the Jardín Botánico de Quito, the botanical gardens. It seems much smaller than its grand name announces, though it is very restive and beautiful regardless. Well, except for the giant bug statues everywhere, but those are just fun.

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The garden is organized into several distinct areas which represent the different ecosystems found in Ecuador, from alpine to rainforest, as well as themed gardens with food plants, carnivorous plants, and, of course, orchids.

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There are two entire greenhouses and an outdoor area dedicated to orchids. Orchids growing in fans, orchids that twist into strange shapes as they grow, orchids that hang in delicate curls, orchids of greens, golds, purples, reds, and browns. Beautiful orchids of colors that don’t even exist…

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Just so you know, that brilliant color is so otherworldly that it doesn’t translate to the camera. I’m fairly certain there’s not even a word for that shade of pink.

We have so much fun going through the orchidarium. I mean, heck, someone even crossed a pitcher plant with an orchid.

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Well, okay, maybe it’s not a carnivorous orchid, but it still looks fun (and likely gets all the water it needs), right?

Once we circled back around to the entrance, we decide it is  a good time for lunch (as it always is!). There is a large mall just across the street from the garden, and we stop there for some Crepes and Waffles before the 5 km trek back to the hostel.

When we return, we play pool and watch movies in the common room for a few hours. When we try to shower in our room, the hot water is out. I’m pretty sure I throw a small temper tantrum, but really, after such an awesome day, who can stay unhappy for long?

 

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