Casa Gangotena, Quito, Ecuador

#hosted by Casa Gangotena; opinions are my own

Spending twenty-four hours in Quito, Ecuador showed our family that Quito is way more than a gateway city to the Galápagos Islands; it’s a destination. Our family enjoyed every moment in Quito and at the beautiful Casa Gangotena hotel, with its ideal location in Old Town steps from all of the action of the city. If traveling with a family to Quito whether you are or are not in route to the Galapagos Islands as your final destination, this destination is one not to miss!

Casa Gangotena is an elegant hotel property located on San Francisco Plaza offering amazing views of the city. This Relais & Chateaux hotel offers formality and traditional Ecuadorian sights but also the comforts of home needed when traveling with young kids. Although the hotel is “fancy”, our kids at ages seven and ten always felt welcome and the room arrangements were comfortable for a family of four.

Our favorite part of our stay at Casa Gangotena was the opportunity to participate in their complimentary hotel activities for guests which in our case was a ceviche-making course with the chef. What fun our kids had as they designed their own ceviche plated our oldest son even discovered a newly-found love for shrimp and ceviche! This experience was a hands-on activity that was great for children of all ages and we were able to spend time with the wonderful staff of the hotel through this opportunity.

The location, too, of Casa Gangotena is ideal with our family having full access to the city right outside of the hotel’s doorsteps. San Francisco Plaza was an ideal area for our bros to run around, chase pigeons and get fresh air. The bros especially loved shopping at the numerous shoppes located just outside of the hotel for toys and special Ecuadorian treats. Besides the hotel in Quito, some of our favorite activities for families included:

  • Splurge at Republic del Cacoa: this chocolate-making factory is a must-visit when in Quito with kids. Located walking distance from Casa Gangotena, this visit was sweeter than sweet. Visitors can watch famous Ecuadorian chocolate be made and enjoy a mirade of treats – we indulged in chocolate ice creams that were heavenly! There is no fee to enter the factory.
  • Visit the Iglesia Compania de Jesus: this “gold church” is a historic site not to be missed. Visitors can learn more about this church which originated in the 1700s. The gold-plated look of the church is breath-taking and the tour of $5 USD per adult (kids are free!) makes it well-worth a visit.
  • Capture photo memories with a local photographer: the sites of the plaza full of pigeons and the cobblestone pathways and unique building landscapes makes Quito a worthwhile city for a family photo shoot. Flytographer*, our typically-used service when traveling, offers photo shoots but they weren’t available during our stay. We found a local photographer, Kate Novitska Photography, who beautifully captured our kids and our family and we were so appreciate of the moments she helped to capture.
  • Enjoy a Complimentary Activity at Casa Gangotena (hotel guests only): one of the perks of choosing Casa Gangotena for our stay was the ability to attend a complimentary ceviche-making class with our bros. Do not miss out on the free activities offered at the hotel.

Overall, Quito was a beautiful, clean and well-designed city and it was a wonderful first-time experience of South America for the bros. We will forever remember the memories made there. While Casa Gangotena is a beautiful hotel, it also does so much good for its local community. Since 2009, Casa Gangotena, in conjunction with neighboring, Casa del Alabado Museum, has financed the maintenance of the San Francisco Plaza’s public toilets. In the same year, the hotel began its involvement in several neighborhood projects, such as the award-winning community initiative, Heritage Guardians, which focuses on neighborhood integration, promoting the value of heritage, and at the same time establishing ‘routes’ for visitors to meet locals and experience their daily traditions and activities.

*use code GOANDDOGOOD50 to get $50 off your Flytographer photo shoot

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