Despite arriving so late (early?) in the morning, we were thankfully able to sleep in a bit before breakfast with some delicious strawberry and banana crepes at our hostal in Quito. A 4 hour bus ride along the Paseo de los Volcanes, with gorgeous views of mountains and volcanoes on both sides, took us to Riobamba. Our hostal here is amazing! There’s a large open courtyard, and the food that we’ve had here is delicious.
In the afternoon, we took a tour of central Riobamba and learned about the train system and its importance to the development of Riobamba and Ecuador in general. We heard stories of Pedro Vicente Maldonado and his contributions to the city, as well as his proficiencies in many different fields such as math, geography, and politics. We were able to see the progression of history at the main cathedral; the lower wall was reconstructed using stones from the previous cathedral which had been destroyed by an earthquake. The indigenous workers also left their mark on this level, through four-petaled flowers hidden in the decoration. Our city tour ended with ice cream, which everyone was pretty thankful for!
Tomorrow, we’ll be meeting with members of local indigenous communities, so we’ll all get some proper rest tonight in order to greet them with all the good energy possible!