A number of years ago, our daughter published her experiences and photos in a series of individual blog posts. This is the collection of her observations from 2013, when she was 12 years old.
Ecuador Pictures By Our 11-Year-Old Daughter
Old Adobe Home Near Cuenca
I got this cool picture when we went out on a small trip. Here in Ecuador, this is not a rare sight. You will see something like this most likely every time you go to the rural areas.
Homes like this one are made by forming mud bricks and then baking them. Most of the buildings here, (especially in the rural areas) are made like this.
In this picture, you can see the tarp on front of the home. And the power lines hanging down gives the photo a nice touch. These homes also usually have a wooden door.
And wooden beams to support the clay shingle-covered roof. Something that makes this even more special and cool to me is that in the background you can see that they are just finishing a nice new house. And that is how it usually is, a nice new home, next to an old adobe one.
You can also see the mountain in the background along with the dark clouds and the wooden shack. It was pretty windy when I got the picture, as you can see in the way the trees are being blown around in the back.
Photo of the Month: Adorable Lambs
I got this picture when we went on a little outing in the country. Isn’t it cute?! I love how they are perfectly lined up, as if they were posing!
The lambs are so white. They stand out really nice against their mothers. The green grass is a really nice touch.
The best time for photos is when the sun is bright, but not to bright. If the sun is too bright, the picture will be washed out.
Interested to photograph some of these areas on your trip? Here’s how to choose Best Camera for Travel.
Interested in more of my animal posts? Thanks for reading, and Happy photography!
Sunset in the Andes (Cuenca, Ecuador)
This series (photo of the month) is a new series I will be doing, hope you like it!
This is a picture that I took a few weeks ago here in Cuenca, I think this is the nicest sunset I have seen! The rays coming up from behind the mountain really give it a nice feel. It makes me feel like I could just fly away into a world of beauty and fantasy!
In this picture, if you look close enough, you can see houses on the mountain and trees too. The dark blue clouds are really nice as well! Sunsets don’t last long here because we are on the equator. When I see a nice one, I have to take a picture right away, or I’ll miss it.
I took this picture with my new Canon camera. As you can see, it worked very, very well.
In the Clouds in Deleg, Ecuador (Near Cuenca)
Wow! What a view! That might be your reaction when you see the below picture. I got this picture on the way down to Deleg, a small town just outside of Cuenca.
I really love this picture. It looks like something you would find in a story book! You can see 3 different layers of clouds.
Something essential about photography is getting at least 2 layers. This picture has 3. I think it really adds a nice feel, close, far, and really far.
Thanks for reading, and happy travels.
Street Vendors in the City Center of Cuenca, Ecuador
Street vendors are a very common thing here in Cuenca, especially in the center. They sell everything from toffee and plantain chips to lottery tickets and cell phones and antennas, etc. etc. It is really neat to be in the midst of it all. You will hear the following in really loud voices:
Lotería, Loteríaaaa! JUEGA HOY, MIL DOLARES! Lotería Loteríaaaa!!!
Lottery, Lottery! Play today for 1000 dollars! Lottery Lotteryyyyy!!
They will say something different for everything they sell. I like this one:
HELADOS, HELADOS! UNOS RICOS HELADOS! LOS MEJORES HELADOS DE CUENCAAAA!!
Can you guess what that means?
Ice cream, ice cream, delicious ice cream, best in Cuencaaaaa!
I think you know why I like that one :^).
There are also vendors that have fruit and fudge. Sometimes, we like to stop and buy some fresh cherries, YUM!
I really like street vendors; it adds a nice touch to a boring day. Of course, no day here in Ecuador is ever truly boring but you know what I mean… I hope that you will be able to come to Ecuador someday and experience this for yourself. Oh, and try the cherries!
Thank you for reading!
Mercedes Benz (Cuenca, Ecuador)
This is the first Mercedes we have seen here in Ecuador. I think these cars are really cool, and they remind me of my uncle. He has a car just like this one.
When I showed him the picture he said, and I quote him, “Hey that car is just like mine!” His sister came home from the hospital in that Mercedes. It is over thirty years old now. It`s still shiny and beautiful (my uncle takes very good care of it).
I like this picture because of the car itself, but also because of what’s in the background. If you look closely, you will see that there are street vendors selling candy and potato chips. One lady is selling lottery tickets. There are also a couple of business men in the background.
I took this picture from the window of Gelateria Pizzeria La Formance pizza shop. As we ate our pizza, we saw this car and thought it was so cool and we just had to take a picture.
A Hungry Calf Wants Its Milk!
When we were at Hacienda Uzhupud, we got to milk a cow at the little farm they have there.
But before we got a chance to start, a calf ran up and started taking all our milk! The lady that was helping us, Claudia, was trying to take the calf away… he wouldn’t budge.
In fact, he got more and more stubborn and rough. He was giving his poor old mama a hard time.
A pull at the rope, and a vigorous BANG! on the utter would follow from the calf. The funny thing is that whenever it would bang its poor mom, milk would come squirting right out the back of the utter!
It was pretty funny to see, but I felt bad for that poor cow! 🙁
Now I Get To Milk A Cow… Finally!
It turns out that the calf left me some milk! 😀 It was really neat to milk it.
Some people say that milking a cow is hard, especially if its your first time. I don’t think so. The only thing I found a little hard was getting the milk in the bucket. 🙂 It was very easy getting the milk out though! It squirted all over me and Claudia :).
When it was time to go, my pants were all wet! But I didn’t mind, it was all part of the fun! In the end, I think I could milk a cow every day, I liked it sooo much!
Have you milked a cow or done something similar? I would love to hear your story!!! Please share it in the comments below! Until next time and HAPPY TRAVELS!
This is a common sight out in the Ecuador countryside: a poor little horse, loaded down with sugar cane.
The sugar cane is not dry, like we originally thought, it is actually the fresh-cut sugar cane. So that would be like you carrying a backpack as long as you, filled with full water jugs; and scratching at your legs and face the whole time!!!!!!
FYI: This is not a candid opinion. All of my local friends that I have asked have said the same thing.
Here’s a tip! When shooting animals, try not to use the flash. It should only be used if it is absolutely necessary because it can spook the animals. And remember: you can always brighten the image in Photoshop.
Catch ya later shutterbug 😉 !
What’s Your Caption? Surprised Monkey
Here’s something creative! When I was looking through my pictures from the zoo, I could hardly believe it when I saw this one! Yep. I took this photo!!!
As soon as I saw it, I thought that it was like a pic on National Geographic Kids. The ones that say “Photo Fill-Ins”. It also gave me a fun idea!
How about this? The monkey on the right is Monkey A. The one on the left is Monkey B. You can comment by typing Monkey A: (here you put what you think he is saying). Monkey B: (here you put what you think he is saying). Ok?
Here is an example:
- Monkey A: “AAAAHHHH!!!!!! Tourist’s! Run for your lives!!!!”
- Monkey B: “Don’t worry! They are just as afraid of you as you are of them. Just play dumb, they love it when you hoot and scratch your bum!!” :D.
I can’t wait to see what you come up with!! Happy travels!
Here are some from the comments:
- Uncle Matt: “Hey, George, look! Is that the new iPhone 5?” 🙂
- “Excuse me, do you have any grey poupon?” “But of course!”
- “If you have any poo, throw it now!” 🙂
- Lori: Ahhh SPIDER!, monkey.
- Beckuns: Monkey A: “Oh no! I just broke *another* nail!” Monkey B: “That’s nothing. You should see how grey you’re going.”
- Laurie: Monkey B: ah man I broke a nail. Monkey A: OOOOHHHH NOOOOOO!
- Nana: Monkey A:”Hey look, it’s Drew with all her friends again, & she’s got her camera!” Monkey B:”Hurry, curl over like me & perhaps they won’t even see us.” 🙂
- Dena (mom): Monkey A: “You’ve got lice!” Monkey B: “Yup, they’re big and juicy, snack away”
Super Puppy: All About My Ecuadorian Pup
I got my puppy 1 month after we moved to Ecuador. She really helped me to adapt. We got her at Cuenca’s local market, the Feria Libre. She was $30 but later our friends said if we were local, only: $3! She was full of fleas and parasites, but we soon purified her! I named her Chica, because all the other gringos called me “Chica” (Spanish for little girl).
The reason I say “Super puppy” is because she greatly reduced my culture shock. When we moved here I didn’t have any friends, but when I got Chica, I had an instant best friend! In my opinion, she is the best dog ever!
Do you have a ‘super puppy’? I would love to hear about him/her! If you give me a description, I will illustrate your puppy and send the pic to you!
Pretty Purple Orchid Petals
This picture is really neat. It is so simple, yet so pretty. But the way I focused the camera made it even nicer.
Fast Facts: This photo was taken at the Cuenca Orchidarium, if you get to Ecuador, a must see!!!
Thanks for reading. Catch ya later shutterbug 😉 !
Cool Up-Close Ecuador Orchid Pretty Purple Petals
I just love orchids! They are so beautiful. I think that this is a neat perspective of one, what do you think?
Fast Facts: This orchid was at the Cuenca orchidarium. I really liked it there!
Here is another cool flower at the orchidarium. I hope you like my ppp series!!!
Catch ya later Shutterbug ;)!
Lazin’ Around in Galapagos with Sea Lions
Hey everyone! This week I’ve been feeling pretty tired, and I thought these sea lions were great examples of what I want to do over the weekend; except on a nice soft bed 😛 !
Fast Facts: Sea lions are my favorite Galapagos animal, I even swam with one.
What is your favorite Galapagos animal? Is it:
- sea lion
- land iguana
- white-tipped reef shark
- blue footed booby
- something else
I would love to hear your thoughts on your favorite Galapagos animal! Please comment below and tell me! I hope you liked this post!
Catch ya later Shutterbug 😀 !
More reading: Travelers Guide to Galapagos Islands Animals
Hiking a Galapagos Volcano
“We’re almost there. 45 more minutes, ok?” I heard that a lot on our hike up Sierra Negra.
Sierra Negra is a huge active volcano on Isabela Island, Galapagos.
I loved the hike. I really like walking and this was a good opportunity. But just one thing: it is a six hour walk.
That’s right: 3 hours up, 3 hours down. But wow, was it worth it!
Once we conquered the walk, we got to see the huge caldera. Wow, was that a sight! It was humongous!!
The naturalist guide said that the caldera was about 10 kilometers by 7 kilometers. I could see where the last eruption was… there was fresh black lava flows. COOL!!!!!!
If you ever hike sierra negra here’s a tip: keep going to el chico volcano. We saw so much more! We saw a lot of small, well relatively small, craters along the way.
It was so neat, some had plants lining them, others were covered in sulfur. We also saw some collapsed lava tunnels and felt heat coming from a lava tube.
We also saw some very pretty lava rocks. They looked like rainbows. They had gases in them from the volcano, I didn’t find any like them anywhere else on the island.
All in all, I loved hiking the volcano! Have you ever hiked a volcano, or done something out of this world? Please share it in the comments!
Happy travels to all!!
A Cool Galapagos Pelican Collage
I love using Photoshop. I love Pelicans. I love collages. Presto!
I love these Pelicans! They have such a variety of expressions. In the future I will be posting a tutorial on how to do these collages!
Fast Facts: These pelicans were at the fish market in the Galapagos on Santa Cruz Island. At the fish market, there were a whole lot of pelicans, a sea lion, and some strange pink primates :P! (People;))
I hope you like my collage; I will be doing more of them with different animals!
Thanks for reading and I’ll catch you later Shutterbug ;P!
Curious Galapagos Tortoise
When I was going through my pictures from Galapagos I was surprised to find this one. You know how when you are on vacation you don’t bother to look at the picture until, in this case, like a year later?
It is so cool how curious he’s looking at the camera; it’s almost like he doesn’t have a neck!
And no, even though it look’s like it, I didn’t merge two photos in Photoshop!
Well thanks for reading this post and I’ll catch you later, Shutterbug :D!
Cool Galapagos Tortoise
I love this tortoise!!
It is sooo cool, the way it is just looking at me out of the corner of its eye!
Fast Facts: This tortoise was at the tortoise reserve on Santa Cruz in the Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador. And the photo was taken with my trusty Canon PowerShot ELPH 100 HS. Super awesome camera!!
Thanks for reading. Catch ya later shutterbug 😉 !
Groovy Galapagos George and Other Giants
Giant tortoises are very interesting. They are very super slow, right? Wrong.
When they want to they can go pretty fast … for a tortoise, it’s just that they don’t move much and I know why. I got to get in an unoccupied shell and I couldn’t lift it!
They have a diverse diet … plants. But they will take a slightly juicer meal, like papaya, a kind of fruit, check mom & dads site (they are very, very, very, very messy eaters!). When they ate papaya they were kind of scary, they ate it so fast!
You wanna know something really cool? Galapagos is named after the saddle-back tortoise, Galapagos means “saddle”! Isn’t that awesome?!?
Lonesome George is famous because he is the only one of his kind left.
Funny Necked Galapagos Flamingos
Flamingos are really fun to shoot because they always look so funny!
I mean seriously: they’re pink, they have crazy long necks and they are just plain funny! These Flamingos are from Galapagos:
Here’s a Tip! When traveling, no matter where, always have your camara. If you don’t you’ll wish you did!
Beautiful Beach On Floreana, Galapagos
This picture is sooo cool. The lighting was awesome, and the clouds!
Check out my parents awesome time-lapse of the sunset on Isabela.
Fast Facts: I took this picture with the Kodak Easyshare C813 Zoom Digital Camera. The picture was taken on the Island of Floreana, Galapagos. Photoshop adjustments: Curves 1, Mask /8.
Catch ya later shutterbug 😉 !
4 Travel Tips: Do’s and Don’ts When Traveling
I’ve made good and bad decisions while traveling. Let me explain how to enjoy the good ones and avoid the bad ones.
- If you are traveling to a developing country never drink the tap water and never eat the fruit without soaking it in grapefruit seed extract. You could get very sick. Here’s how to filter your water.
- Don’t bring anything hard to carry around like a big toy. Trust me, you will get tired quickly!
- Always bring both good hiking shoes and sandals. You wouldn’t want to climb a mountain in sandals, and you won’t want to go on the beach in sneakers.
- If you are coming to somewhere like Ecuador, always have an umbrella. It is often sunny in the morning, and really rainy in the afternoon; or vice-versa.
Simple things can help a lot! I hope these few travel tips will help you. What is your favorite travel tip? Share it in the comment section below!
What do you think about my blog? Do the posts need to be a little longer/ shorter? More descriptive? More pictures? I love your feedback!
Drew Haines is an animal enthusiast and travel writer. She loves to share her passion through her writing. Drew runs two popular animal sites: EverywhereWild and JustBirding. She lived in Ecuador for 6 years and explored the Galapagos Islands. Currently based in N.S., Canada.