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Ibarra is a city in Ecuador.


Ibarra is colonial town of 100,000 inhabitants and the capital of Imbabura province. It is 2.5 hours north of Quito on the Panamerican highway, and about 30 minutes by bus from Otavalo. It is half-way to the Ecuador / Colombia border at Tulcan.

Ibarra has preserved much of its colonial architecture in its city center and its plazas are clean and picturesque. Ibarra in an ideal destination in itself. It is also a good place for those going to Otavalo's markets to stay it, if you want to get away from the tourists yet still be a short bus ride from the market.

Get in[edit]

Ibarra has a modern bus station, although some buses (such as San Cristobal) that pass through the town don't go there, so you may need to get off on the main road. The bus from Quito leaves from the Carcelen bus terminal takes 2.5 hours. Buses leave from Terrestre Terminal Tulcán (where there is a currency exchange). Another option is to take a shuttle to Ibarra. Information on bus and shuttle schedules can be found at AndesTransit.

Get around[edit]

A taxi within the city costs $1.50-$2.00 (May 2017)

See[edit][add listing]

  • Lago Yahuarcocha. A beautiful lake 3km from Ibarra. It is possible to take boat trips, go fishing or paragliding. Has hotels and restaurants specialising in fish dishes. Also has a racetrack which hosts local car and bike racing  edit
  • Tren de la Libertad, [1]. A two-hour train ride on a type of bus converted to run on the former San Lorenzo railway line goes as far as Salinas. Current information on this train is available at Tren Ecuador. It is necessary to reserve in advance - it is best to do this at the railway station at least the day before.  edit
  • Valle del Chota. An area populated by African-Ecuatorian descendants. It is possible to visit typical villages and go fishing, rafting or kayaking.  edit
  • Otavalo. This town is famous for its market. It is 30 mins away by bus. Buses leave every 10 minutes and cost 0,41$.  edit

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Paragliding. Fly Ecuador offers paragliding for 60$ and rafting for 40$. They are on Oviedo 3 blocks west of the tourist office.  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

Eat[edit][add listing]

  • Chifu Oriental. Good Chinese Restaurant on Calle Bolivar 2 blocks south of Gomez de la Torre.  edit
  • Olor Cafe, on the main square. Great coffee, has a "CNN breakfast" for $4.50  edit
  • Zen Wei, Jose Antonio de Sucre #7-48 y Pedro Moncayo (Mon-Fri 12:00pm-4:30pm). Vegetarian restaurant. Serves a lunch menu of soup, a few dishes, and a drink (juice, soya milk or tea) for $2.50. No garlic or onion used.  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

  • Heladeria Rosalia Suarez. More than a hundred years old, you can watch the workers making the ice cream manually  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Hotel Plaza Victora, Bolivar 12-101 y Rafael Larrea, (06) 2 600 887. A recently-opened comfortable hotel in the city centre. Single/double with bathroom and TV 15/25$..  edit
  • The Backpacker Hostal, Juan Jose Flores 3-43 entre Salinas y Maldonado, Ibarra 100104, 099 657 3989. The Backpacker Hostal is central to lost of cafes and parks. Beds cost between $10-$15 no matter how many people sleep in them. 12. (0.350199,-78.115171) edit
  • Hostal Residencia Imperio, Calle Olmedo #8-50 y Oviedo, (06) 295-2929. Centrally located, clean rooms, attentive staff, laundry service. $10.  edit


Get out[edit]

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