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Cuenca Tour: The Best of Cuenca Ecuador in 12-Video City Tour

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Visiting Ecuador and looking for a great Cuenca tour? In this post, you’ll get to see the best of the city of Cuenca Ecuador in this 12-video tour of the city.

Cuenca tour
In this post, I’ve put together our 12 best videos for a great Cuenca driving tour. On this virtual Cuenca tour, you have two options:

  1. Just sit back and watch. Start the video playlist below – and enjoy your 90 minute Cuenca tour.
  2. Choose the area you want to see most. Below this video, you’ll see a list of the areas we’ve covered – and you can choose the video of the specific area you want to see most.

Ready to get started? Lets go – your Cuenca tour bus is now departing!


Cuenca City Tour (12 Video Playlist)

In this playlist, you’ll visit the most popular areas of the city. The first video is a time-lapse of a bus tour around Cuenca. Then we slow it down as we visit the main streets and neighborhoods in the city.


 
Have a specific area in mind? Here are all the videos in the above playlist – organized by area.

Cuenca Tour: Street by City Street: For a time lapse bus trip around Cuenca, jump to the end of the post.

Tour of Baños in Cuenca Ecuador (Driving via a Baños)

On this drive, we start on Avenida de las Americas and travel the full length of via a Baños to the large blue church.

For many years, we lived at the foot of via a Baños and know it well. We’ve hiked extensively in the roads and hills above the blue church. There is a small produce market in front of the church on the weekends. The views from the parking lots are amazing.

You’ll also find a number of hotels with hot springs in Baños.

Tour of Avenida Remigio Crespo in Cuenca

Av. Remigio Crespo runs from Avenida de las Americas (at the Feria Libre), crosses Avenida Loja and continues to Avenida Solano (by the stadium).

Remigio Crespo runs through two parroquias (parishes): El Batán and Sucre.

There are many nice restaurants on the lower (Solano) end of Remigio Crespo. There are also a number of apartment towers, furniture stores and bike shops in this area. SRI (Ecuador’s national tax office – like the American IRS) is located here.

Why I Like Avenida Remigio Crespo: Remigio Crespo Avenue is one of my favorite streets for walking. It has really wide sidewalks, plenty of trees and a lot to do. There are a couple of parks, a number of coffee shops and lots of stores. What’s not to like?

Tour of Avenida Loja, Cuenca, Ecuador

Now we’ll tour the length of Avenida Loja in Cuenca, Ecuador. Starting at Avenida de las Americas and ending at Avenida 12 de Abril (runs parallel to the Tomebamba River).

This area is affectionately known as Gringolandia by both expats and locals. Because of the number of apartment towers and its closeness to Supermaxi (a high-end grocery store) many expats start their lives in Ecuador on this street.

Tour of Gringolandia in Cuenca, Ecuador (Avendia Ordoñez Lazo)

Within walking distance of Gringolandia, you’ll find the Cuenca Orchidarium, an English-speaking dentist, and Plaza de las Americas – home of Supermaxi (1 of 3 in Cuenca) and SuKasa.

This area is close to both the city center and the airport. There are many stores nearby and there are nice walking trails along the Tomebamba River which runs parallel to the Avenue.

The majority of buildings in this area are security buildings and the area is known to be safe. After we were robbed, we moved to one of the apartment towers for a year.

Avenida Ordoñez Lazo is located in the parroquia (parish) of San Sebastián.

How Do You Spell Ordoñez Lazo? It’s a good question. We’ve seen it spelled at least three different ways:

  • Ordoñez Laso
  • Ordoñez Lasso
  • Ordoñez Lazo

We’ve noticed that consistent spelling isn’t that important in Ecuador. Many towns have multiple spellings – even multiple names. Sometimes two signs within sight of each other will spell the town name differently.

Visiting Supermaxi El Vergel in Cuenca

This is an area you’ll come to know well. There are a number of government offices, TV Cable (internet/cable provider), and Supermaxi. 

This video shows how to get to Supermaxi (El Vergel) and Parque de la Madre from Avenida Solano.


What’s Nearby Supermaxi (El Vergel) and Parque de la Madre: This video travels from Avenida Remigio Crespo, crossing Avenida Solano and going around Estadio de Cuenca – where the local soccer team plays.

After passing Supermaxi, we continue on to Parque de la Madre (with the new McDonalds restaurant on the right). We continue past Millennium Plaza and merge into Avenida 12 de Abril.

Supermaxi Grocery Stores in Cuenca

The Supermaxi shown in the video is just one of three here in Cuenca. Here are the three Supermaxi locations:

  1. Supermaxi El Vergel: as shown on the video, it is located just two blocks from the stadium on the corner of Alfonso Cordero Palacios.
  2. Supermaxi Las Americas: on the corner of Avenida Ordoñez Lazo and Avenida de las Americas in the Plaza de las Americas. Enter the Plaza off of Camino del Tejar.
  3. Supermaxi Miraflores: located just two blocks from the airport on Av. Elia Liut and  Gil Ramirez.

Cuenca Tour: Driving to Mall del Rio

Mall del Rio is the largest shopping center in Cuenca, Ecuador. In this video, you’ll see how to drive there from the old city along Avenida Solano.

Drive Avenida Don Bosco on Your Cuenca Tour

On this drive, we start at Tres Puentes (3 Bridges) on Avenida Solano and travel the full length of Avenida Don Bosco to Avenida de las Americas. This road runs almost parallel to Avenida Primero de Mayo.

Avenida Don Bosco is famous for its roast cuy and pork – sold right on the street. Read more about pork and cuy.

Cuenca Tour of Avenida Primero de Mayo

On this drive, we start on Avenida de las Americas and travel down Primero de Mayo. On the left, is the Yanuncay River.

As we come to the end of the video, we arrive at the redondel tres puentes (Three Bridges Rotary) and turn right onto Avenida Don Bosco.

What’s Nearby on Primero de Mayo? This road is great for walkers. There is a nice sidewalk – separated from the main road and runs along the Yanuncay river. There are many green areas and parks the length of the road.

Cuenca City Tour of Avendia 10 de Agosto, Parque Paraiso and Solca

On this drive we’ll start on Avenida del Paraiso by Solca (Cuenca’s famous cancer clinic) and pass Parque Paraiso. We travel the full length of the Avenue to Avenida Loja.

To the left of Avenida 10 de Agosto is the Yanuncay River. As we drive, we go through a number of redondels (traffic circles or roundabouts).

Driving Tour of Avenida Solano, Cuenca

We begin on 12 de Abril (at the foot of the stairs heading to El Centro) and travel toward 3 Puentes. At the beginning of the Avenue, you’ll see the headquarters of Banco Pichincha.

What’s Nearby on Avenida Solano, Cuenca? At the corner of 12 de Abril and Solano (where the video begins) you can go left (on foot) and head up into the city center on a walking tour.

Also at that intersection, you’ll see the main office for Banco Pichincha in Cuenca. If you follow Solano from one end to the other, you’ll cross Remigio Crespo, 10 de Agosto, Primero de Mayo and Don Bosco.
Avenida Solano ends at Tres Puentes (Three Bridges). From there, it’s super close to Mall del Rio.

And there you have it. Our top 12 Cuenca tour videos. 

How did we shoot these videos? These were all shot with a GoPro and Fat Gecko Suction Mount mounted to the inside of the windshield of our ’94 Trooper. The bus tour time lapse was shot with our GoPro mounted on the UltraClamp on top of a double-decker bus.


Double-Decker Bus Time Lapse in Cuenca

Over the past year, we’ve published a number of driving videos around Cuenca Ecuador. In this video, we want to share something a little different. This video is a complete timelapse of the two-hour double-decker bus trip around Cuenca.

tour of cuenca ecuador
This post has two videos. One at normal speed (10 frames per second) and another at half speed (5 frames per second). We did this so you can see either a quick overview or a detailed tour. The tour lasted two hours.

We shot this video on top of the large red double-decker bus. You can catch it at Parque Calderon in Cuenca’s downtown.

Note: As you’ll notice in the video, the bus loops around the main park (Parque Calderon) before leaving the downtown.

Tour of Cuenca Ecuador: Double-Decker Bus Time Lapse (7:24)

This video lasts 7 minutes 24 seconds. Would you like to see more detail? Check out the second video for the same trip at half the speed.

Tour of Cuenca Ecuador: Time Lapse Video (Half Speed 15:06)

This video is identical to the first one, except that is slowed to half speed. If you are thinking of moving to Cuenca, this might be the one for you.


doubledecker bus tour cuenca
Climbing the road to Turi in the double-decker bus.

bus tour cuenca ecuador

The other double decker bus.

safety risks cuenca

Watch for low hanging wires. This one was marked with a red flag.

tour cuenca ecuador

A low brick bridge you’ll pass under. Make sure you duck!

tour of cuenca ecuador

View from Turi while on the bus tour of Cuenca

Interested to make your own time-lapse? Here’s how we created this driving timelapse video.

Walking Tour of Cuenca

While driving videos are great, they aren’t the same as having your feet on the ground. We created a half-day kid-friendly walking tour of Cuenca.

Cuenca below Calle Larga

Your Turn

Have you taken a city tour of Cuenca? What’s your favorite area? Planning a trip? What area do you want to see most?

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