Festivals in Ecuador

Hello everyone,

What are the main festivals in Ecuador? Are there art, food, music, film, or other festivals expats can attend and participate in?

When do the festivals take place? How long does each festival usually last?

What activities go on during the festival? Is it necessary to buy tickets?

Are there any other events that take place in Ecuador that shouldn't be missed?

Thank you for sharing your experience.

Priscilla

On the coast...

New Year's Eve in Salinas

Dias Disfuntos in Anconcito Nov 1 & 2

Dia de Communa Montañita y San Isidro Labrador in Montanita May 14 & 15

Carnival...Everywhere! (The weekend prior to Ash Wednesday, varies usually end of February)

Christmas Week

Easter Week

In Quito aside from the aforementioned we have festivals all the time. Most are free and some are not like music festival Quitofest. Some areas also like to have their own thing and have their own festivals. Sometimes it’s a bit too much with all the festivities, and I hope I don’t sound the Grinch or stooge or whoever, but I just can’t wait until summer ends in Quito (and yes it is summer season despite the weather nonsense people speak about). Anyway what I’m going about is literally the hoards of returning Ecuadorians, and take McDonalds for example it’s usually empty during the week the rest of the year but during summer it’s packed each and every day. That’s how it is everywhere else. 

So I loves me some September through May!

Tomorrow Nov 2 through Sunday, Nov 5, 2017 is an extended holiday with back to back holidays of Día de los Difuntos and Cuenca's independence days. And Quiteños are taking full advantage of it with some messaging things like Ya me huele a playa (I smell the beach already).

Enjoy the holidays.

The local festivals in Quito are endless. Just appearing all the time. The ways to find about them is via radio, billboards, newspapers especially local ones, and of course social media.

This December 1st, at Quitumbe "Fiestas de Quito", will have a free event at 6:00 pm featuring Nacho, the singer of the famous song Bailame

This is impressive for the municipality and very generous of them to offer these free events to the public. The fans should love this event, and there are many more free festivals all the time. "Festival of Living", "Festival of Light", etc, etc.

In Quito a week long celebration/festival (Fiestas de Quito) concluded on December 6th, although there was still some level of party activity on the 7th. Officially it is longer than a week because there were organized activities and events the last week of November. But the partying was in full display from December 1st, with concerts galore including some big name artists. On December 6th the streets were flooded with Chivas, or buses that travel around the city with people dancing on them with DJs, alcohol, and some with food too.

For me it’s a little too much because I live near one of the stages in which live performances went on from the noon until past midnight on some days. But it’s not about me, and conversing with many people about this week long fiesta the responses were all positive. The week generates a lot of money because people are eating, drinking, going out more, and buying gifts, and clothing. The store owners are happy, the taxi drivers, the malls, the Chiva bus owners, and so on are all happier during this festive time.

Tonight is Friday night/December 8th, and not a sound, as the only normal party action is probably occurring in the night life district or La Mariscal. Later on this month we will have some other festivities but this leads to Christmas and much quieter as it's a family thing.

And by the way, Fiestas de Quito, are celebrations marking the foundation of Quito. It is now 483 years old.

Just a heads up the Light Festival (Fiesta de la Luz) is currently on and you can enjoy it tonight and until August 12. 

https://especiales.elcomercio.com/documentos/2018/08/fiesta_luz_home.gif

I wish we were there now.  We will be "home" in November/December.  We will be moved to our home in the south next summer! 
Are festivals local and national?
We are from the USA - does anyone celebrate Thanksgiving - like able to make the food?  We can bring the spices we need to cook with us!
What are the national festivals in November/December?  Are most more than one day?

Thanks for the information!
Robin

RobinJoel :

What are the national festivals in November/December?  Are most more than one day?

There is no festival in La República that shines brighter than what you'll find during Christmastime in Quito.

The processions and festivities in Centro Histórico in December are what-to-see in Ecuador for festival lovers, especially on Good Friday and Christmas Eve.

Cuenca has its own procession(s) with folks dressed as angels, shepherds and foremen. 

There are celebrations throughout the country during Christmas Week.

Google youtube Christmas in Quito or Christmas in Ecuador for a taste of what is coming up in four months.

cccmedia, resident of Centro Histórico

RobinJoel :

We are from the USA - does anyone celebrate Thanksgiving - like able to make the food?  We can bring the spices we need to cook with us!

It's too early to figure out if there will be celebration(s) of Thanksgiving in the capital this year.

Three years ago the South American Explorers held their last-ever event in Quito in a blow-out Thanksgiving feast at the Explorers clubhouse with about 60 people in attendance for turkey and all the trimmings.

The following month the Explorers went out of business in Quito.

There likely will be a restaurant or two serving turkey dinners in the Plaza Foch area.  Too soon to know.

Inter------ typically has an event in Quito that week, although not with a Thanksgiving theme or featuring a turkey dinner.

Many homes do not have a large oven, complicating the logistics of planning a private Thanksgiving dinner for a group.  Still, I have walked from my condo down Calle Garcia Moreno scores of times noticing an "Horneo Pavo" sign (loosely translated as We Cook Turkey) that has long been posted at a building along the way.

cccmedia

RobinJoel :

I wish we were there now.  We will be "home" in November/December.  We will be moved to our home in the south next summer! 
Are festivals local and national?
We are from the USA - does anyone celebrate Thanksgiving - like able to make the food?  We can bring the spices we need to cook with us!
What are the national festivals in November/December?  Are most more than one day?

Thanks for the information!
Robin

Festivals are local and national. Susan_in_Ecuador listed national ones a few posts up. You’ll eventually become aware of them through friends or by the vibe of the city as there is more activity and excitement in the air. Perhaps your city's municipality has a website that lists festivals and events. Local news is also a good way to know about happenings.

As for Thanksgiving, it’s not a holiday but what’s to stop you from celebrating it.

Regarding Turkey: my Ecuadorian girlfriend and her family needed to rent an oven for Christmas Turkey. Because their oven is so small.

Rent an oven!?!

In her Guayaquil neighborhood, an enterprising person has a commercial kitchen with 3 large ovens. Neighbors can rent the kitchen for half a day in order to prepare feasts for big family get togethers.

I love the thrifty solution. Why spend the money an oversized oven you will only use once or twice a year?

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