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My-Quito.com : Buses and Trains

Buses in Ecuador
Buses are incredibly cheap and on the routes served by the trole and eco-bus are the fastest way of getting around Quito. The Trolley and Bus Ecológico routes run north south along the east and west sides of Quito in special bus routes that allow them to beat the traffic. Other buses are classified as popular (blue) or the more expensive ejecutivo/selectivo (red). Buses can get crowded but are by far the most interesting way to move around.
 
Long distance buses can provide tedium and excitement in equal measure -they can be slow, have noisy stereos and tend not to slow down for bends on mountain roads. Although distances appear short by map, the roads in the mountains are tortuous and slow, so journeys can be longer than you expect. The payback is in some of the most spectacular views, and you can get to most parts of the country in a day.
 
Some of the long distance buses are equipped with airconditioning, tv and toilets -on the poorer ones you will get the drivers radio blaring out non stop. When travelling long distance by bus, arrive at the set off point early and don't rely on the timetable.
 
For a list of transport companies and destinations in Quito, visit the Quito municipality website -most bus companies are based at the Terminal Terrestre de Cumandá located in the old town, close to Plaza Santo Domingo at 3077 Maldonado. Watch out for thieves and pickpockets when travelling by bus -gringos are an obvious target.
 
Finally, you should remember that many of the more upmarket hotels and haciendas run their own bus shuttle services from Quito -ask if booking in advance.
 
Quito Trolebus -the trolley and ecovia bus system in Quito.
Chiva Express -Metropolitan Touring offer trips to Cuenca and Guayaquil on board a converted Chiva on rails -a Chiva is a bus converted for parties -these are hired for celebrations and parade noisily around the city complete with brass band and revellers on the roof.
Color Bus Line -private transport to the markets and haciendas of Otavalo along with other tours and activities.
Ecuador Bus Terminals -locations and phone numbers for bus terminals from the Ministry of Tourism.
Tramz -article on el Trole, Quito's trolley bus system.
 

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Traffic in Quito
Traffic can be a real problem, especially in the narrow streets of the old town, so do not underestimate the value of the Trolley and Eco Buses in cutting through it with their designated lanes.

Featured book:

The Old Patagonian Express: By Train Through the Americas
Paul Theroux
Penguin Books Ltd
Paperback - November 25, 2004
Price in UK pounds
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