The large modern cathedral is standing on the northeastern side of Parque Montalvo. On this site a chapel was built already in 1689, but it was destroyed in an earthquake and replaced by a larger church. That church got destroyed in another earthquake in 1797 and a new church had to be built. Once again the church was destroyed when a terrible...more
Juan Montalvo (1832 – 1889) is one of Ecuador’s most well known writers. He was born in this house, which now houses a museum over his life, and Montalvo’s mausoleum has been built next door. Juan Montalvo was a political liberal and for his writing he was exiled to Colombia and Paris for many years.The museum opened up in 1988 and here you can see...more
Museo de La Provincia is situated inside Casa del Portal on the southeastern side of Parque Juan Montalvo. On the ground floor there was an art exhibition with paintings of volcanoes (many of Chimborazo and El Altar). Around the courtyard there are some old photographs and then there is a room with archaeological findings from the region. Upstairs...more
The Natural History Museum in Ambato is housed in Colegio Bolívar, an old stone building. The museum has been there since 1920 when it displayed a zoological exhibition. There is a large collection of stuffed birds, mammals and reptiles. There are also insects like butterflies and beetles, and some stuffed deformed animals, like a calf with two...more
Parque Juan Montalvo is named after the writer Juan Montalvo, of whom there is a statue in the centre of the park. The statue was made in Italy by Pietro Capurro. Construction of the park started in 1905 and it was inaugurated in 1911. Around the park there is a wall with eight gates. Parque Juan Montalvo is situated in the city centre and it is a...more
The house of Ecuadorian historical intellectual Juan Leon Mera, whose name is immortalized in street names across the country, is a great place to spend an hour or two while in Ambato.The house has a small museum, with interesting modern and historical art, as well as memorabilia from J.L. Mera.The gardens are beautiful, and are nice to just walk...more
1014 Cevallos Av. and Lalama St., Ambato, Ecuador
Good for: Couples
It was lunchtime when I arrived in Ambato so I thought it was best to eat something before I started to walk around and visit museums. I saw there was a restaurant/café in Casa de Cultura on the northwestern side of Parque Juan Montalvo, and they had lunch offers so I went there.
The set lunch menu was $2.40 (July 2012). I was served a salad, a soup and a fruit juice first. When the main dish came I realized I couldn’t cut the meet with my broken wrist, so I had to go to the counter and ask for help (this was not the first time it happened). Usually there is also a desert served with the set lunch menu, and probably there was this time as well, but I have neither notes about this restaurant nor more photos and can’t remember what was served.
During the usual night walk, some spotlights to see are historical buildings lit up in an eye-catching way, like this one which had an extra ingredient with the moon on top
Dress Code: Warm clothes since it can get chilly at nights
From the hotel in Riobamba to the bus terminal I took a taxi, and as all taxi journeys within town it was $1 (July 2013). When I arrived to the terminal I didn’t go to the counters but went straight to the buses to see if there was a bus leaving right away. I knew I had to change bus in Ambato and luckily there was a bus leaving within a few...more
I walked to the bus terminal and just as I arrived a bus outside the terminal was leaving for Ambato. I hopped on and got a seat. I sat next to a man from Ambato whose name was Darwin. Near Ambato there was a lot of traffic and the bus travelled slowly. In Ambato I had planed to go to the terminal and take a bus to the centre from there. Darwin...more
4 Reviews and Opinions
Monday is the main market day in Ambato and even if I didn’t arrive until lunchtime I hoped to see some of the activities around the markets. There are several markets around Ambato and I went to the two large indoor markets Mercado Central and Mercado Modelo, which are situated in the centre only a few blocks apart. Even if it was already afternoon there was still lots of people in the surrounding streets, some selling their goods, and also inside the markets. Both markets are very colourful with fruits, vegetables, flowers grains, meat and lots of other things for sale. I had just had lunch when I came here, otherwise I would probably have tried some of the traditional food in the food court, things like llapingachos or cuy.
Opposite Mercado Modelo there was also a smaller market where local craft is sold.
The local delicacy in the Ecuadorian Sierra, and throughout much of the andes, is 'Cuy'.
Cuy is guinea pig. It is cooked several different ways, including deep fat fry, grill, or rotisserie. I have not yet tasted this 'treat', so I can't give any advice on whether or not it is a good choice...