Ecuador’s greatest heritage is its great cultural wealth, this small country is divided into four natural regions each with a different culture that is reflected through its cuisine, clothing, customs and traditions with a strong influence of miscegenation product of European colonization and the resistance of indigenous cultures.
The mountain region of Ecuador is known for having a great natural wealth highlighting its mountains, rivers and lakes, it also has a large part of indigenous population, most of it is dedicated to agriculture in small farms and commerce. The indigenous culture is characterized by having an ancestral wisdom and a deep contact with nature, the elements that stand out most are their colorful clothes, their language most of them speak Quichua and their traditions customs that are deeply rooted in a family environment .They are divided into several groups or better known as indigenous peoples that are close to thirteen, among which the Otavalos that inhabit the northern part, more specifically the provinces of Imbabura and have managed to preserve their culture over time, are characterized by being very good artisans including many of his works have managed to be recognized internationally.
Another way to get into the culture is to know the festivities which are:
The summer solstice is celebrated to thank the god Inti (Sun) for the abundance in the crops and the Pachamama (Mother Earth) for caring for and blessing crops. Held on June 21 in almost all the indigenous populations of the mountains. The most recognized are registered in the provinces of Imbabura, Cotopaxi, Tungurahua, Cañar, Azuay and Loja. The popular festival of Inti Raymi is characterized by having dancers wearing their heads decorated with mirrors, sequins and feathers; or in the path of Aya Huma ( characterization of the devil ) this character can spin very close to you, with his mask of two fronts.
The Black Mama
It is in Latacunga, province of Cotopaxi, where the Black Mama shows the indigenous, Spanish and African cultures of Ecuador. A magical ceremony that reveals the life of different peoples conceived in their miscegenation. The neighbors of this place also pay homage to the Virgen de la Merced as a demonstration of gratitude for the favors granted. It takes place first in the month of September, as a festival of devotees and the second date is held in the first week of November, after the anniversary of independence or political party of Latacunga.
The Carnival of Guaranda
At the rhythm of a comparsa, the most popular party in Ecuador is lit. Thousands of people gather every year in the province of Bolívar, specifically in the city of Guaranda, for the party that is immersed in water and music marking the carnival. This religious festival is usually celebrated in the month of February and allows sharing with the neighbors of the place their joy and hospitality, between dances, laughter and games that make time forget.
Feast of Flowers and Fruits
The streets of Ambato, in the province of Tungurahua, become a footbridge. Allegorical cars, built by the residents of this capital, cross the neighborhoods that are complemented by the landscape of the mountains. Held 40 days before Holy Week, the parade of the fraternity is complemented by the election of the Queen of Ambato, in addition to the Blessing of Bread and fruits. It is a round accompanied by music and gastronomy.
Diablada de Píllaro
The Diablada Festival is held every year in Píllaro, province of Tungurahua, from January 1 to 6. According to legend, the comparsas represent a devil who came to America with Christianity. It is at this party that the Indian jumps, dances and rejoices transformed into a devil, placing large masks on his face. This ancestral festival is expressed in the dance of all the communities of the canton, which in a circle show their rhythm and in their hands there is always a doll, a bottle of liquor and a handkerchief.
The Processional Walk of the Chagra
Machachi, in the province of Pichincha, receives its visitors dressed in scarves and hats. In July, locals will parade in on horses, along with the applauded bands of people, in honor of the foundation of Machachi
In Otavalo, province of Imbabura, in September, a popular festival dedicated to a sacred drink is celebrated: the Yamor. This is made with corn and serves to thank the Pacha Mama (Mother Earth) for its abundance, as well as being a tribute to the Virgin Mary of Monserrate. Here the miscegenation of beliefs is glimpsed.
The rich culture of Ecuador is very wide where you can learn many things and be able to know a different vision of the world, we can help you create new experiences so that you can know in detail the fascinating Andean world.
Comparsa : Traditional Ecuadorian dance.
Chagra: Peasant from the Ecuadorian Andes.