Ibarra, Ecuador

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Ibarra, Ecuador

Region: Imbabura

Geographic Coordinates: 0.362700, -78.130700
Temperature Range: 10.0°C to 25.0°C (50°F to 77°F)
Climate: Seasonal variations with a wet season from October to May and a dry season from June to September, with temperatures ranging from 10°C to 25°C.
Population: 131856
Language: Spanish

Ibarra is a small city situated in the Imbabura Province of Ecuador, Just 115 km north of Quito. Known as the White City, It’s famous for its colonial architecture, Beautiful plazas, And friendly locals. The city boasts a rich history dating back to pre-Columbian times when it was inhabited by the Caranqui people. Later on, During the Spanish colonial era, It became an important commercial center. One of Ibarra’s most iconic landmarks is its Cathedral of San Miguel Arcangel built-in 1871.

This stunning neoclassical church features intricate stained glass windows and towering bell towers that can be seen from almost anywhere in the city. Another must-see attraction is La Plaza de la Merced – a picturesque square lined with colorful buildings and outdoor cafes where you can enjoy a cup of coffee while taking in views of the surrounding mountains. For those interested in history and culture, Ibarra offers several museums worth visiting such as Museo del Banco Central del Ecuador showcasing artifacts from pre-Columbian times to present day while Museo de la Ciudad focuses on local history and traditions.

Additionally, There are many art galleries featuring works by local artists that provide insight into contemporary Ecuadorian culture. Nature lovers will also find plenty to do in Ibarra since it’s surrounded by lush green hillsides and scenic countryside dotted with lakes and waterfalls. One popular destination for hiking enthusiasts is El Angel Ecological Reserve which boasts some of Ecuador’s most stunning landscapes including paramo grasslands and cloud forests. no visit to Ibarra would be complete without sampling some traditional Andean cuisine such as llapingachos (potato cakes stuffed with cheese), Hornado (roast pork), Or fanesca (a hearty soup made with beans).

There are many restaurants throughout town serving up these delicious dishes along with other regional specialties like fresh trout and empanadas. Overall, Ibarra is a charming city that offers a unique blend of history, Culture, And natural beauty. Whether you’re interested in exploring its colonial architecture, Learning about local traditions or simply enjoying the stunning scenery, This hidden gem in the Andes Mountains is well worth a visit.

Important Landmarks

  1. La Plaza de la Independencia
  2. El Parque Ciudad Blanca
  3. La Catedral de Ibarra
  4. El Museo del Banco Central de Ibarra
  5. La Iglesia de San Agustín
  6. El Complejo Arqueológico Tulipe-Pachamama
  7. La Hacienda Zuleta
  8. Laguna Yahuarcocha
  9. El Mirador del Lago San Pablo
  10. El Parque Nacional Cayambe Coca

Primary Industries

  1. Agriculture (particularly dairy farming)
  2. Tourism
  3. Textiles and clothing manufacturing
  4. Construction
  5. Retail trade
  6. Growing technology sector with several software development companies
  7. Significant presence of small businesses such as restaurants, cafes, and artisanal shops

Noteable History

  1. The founding of Ibarra: Ibarra was founded in 1606 by the Spanish conquistador Cristóbal de Troya.
  2. The earthquake of 1868: On August 16, 1868, a devastating earthquake struck Ibarra and surrounding areas, killing an estimated 5,000 people.
  3. The Battle of Ibarra: On July 1, 1823, the forces of General Antonio José de Sucre defeated the Spanish army in a decisive battle near Ibarra during the Ecuadorian War of Independence.
  4. Juan Montalvo: Juan Montalvo (1832-1889) was an influential Ecuadorian writer and political thinker who spent much of his life in exile due to his opposition to the government.
  5. María Angélica Idrobo: María Angélica Idrobo (1910-1999) was a prominent Ecuadorian poet and feminist who played a key role in promoting women’s rights in her country.
  6. Francisco Orellana: Francisco Orellana (c.1511-1546) was a Spanish explorer who is best known for his expedition down the Amazon River in search of gold and other riches.
  7. Rafael Troya: Rafael Troya (1928-2012) was an acclaimed Ecuadorian painter whose work often depicted scenes from daily life in rural communities.
  8. Pablo Neruda: The Chilean poet Pablo Neruda visited Ibarra during his travels through South America in the early 1950s and wrote about its natural beauty and cultural richness.
  9. Carlos Julio Arosemena Tola: Carlos Julio Arosemena Tola served as President of Ecuador from March to November 1961 after leading a military coup that overthrew President José María Velasco.
  10. Rosalia Arteaga Serrano: Rosalia Arteaga Serrano served as the President of Ecuador for only two days, from February 9 to February 11, 1997.

Museums and Things To See

  1. Museo del Banco Central
  2. La Merced Church
  3. Parque Ciudad Blanca
  4. Museo de las Culturas Otavaleñas
  5. Plaza de la Independencia
  6. Casa de la Cultura Ecuatoriana Benjamín Carrión
  7. Iglesia San Agustín
  8. Laguna Yahuarcocha
  9. Parque Cóndor
  10. Cementerio General de Ibarra

Sports Teams

  1. Club Deportivo Otavalo: This soccer team was founded in 1974 and has competed in various regional tournaments over the years. They have won several championships at the provincial level.
  2. Club Deportivo Imbabura: Another soccer team that represents the province of Imbabura. They were founded in 1979 and have played at both professional and amateur levels.
  3. Club Deportivo San Francisco: This basketball team was founded in 1960 and has won several national championships over the years.
  4. Club Deportivo Valle del Chota: A volleyball team that represents the Afro-Ecuadorian community of Valle del Chota. They have won numerous regional championships since their founding in 1985.
  5. Asociación Atlética Imbabura: An athletics club that was founded in 1957 and has produced several notable athletes who have represented Ecuador internationally.

Cultural Events

  1. Fiesta de San Juan: This festival is celebrated in June and includes a parade, music, dance, and food.
  2. Carnaval de Ibarra: This carnival is celebrated in February or March and features colorful costumes, parades, music, dance, and street parties.
  3. Festival Internacional de la Música: This international music festival takes place in August and features musicians from around the world performing a variety of genres.
  4. Festival del Maíz: This festival celebrates the importance of corn in Ecuadorian culture with traditional food tastings, cooking demonstrations, art exhibits related to corn production.
  5. Feria Artesanal y Cultural de Ibarra: Held every year during the first week of August this fair showcases handmade crafts from artisans throughout Ecuador.
  6. Semana Santa (Holy Week): Celebrated during Easter week this event features religious processions throughout the city including Good Friday’s procession where locals carry statues of Jesus Christ through town.
  7. Fiestas Patronales de la Virgen del Carmen: Celebrated on July 16th this event honors the patron saint of Ibarra with religious ceremonies followed by traditional dances and fireworks displays at nightfall.


  • Hornado de Chancho – a dish of roasted pork served with potatoes, corn, and avocado.
  • Fanesca – a traditional soup made with grains, beans, milk, cheese and pumpkin seeds that is typically served during Easter.
  • Churrasco – a dish of grilled beef served with rice, fries and salad.
  • El Abuelo Restaurant – known for its traditional Ecuadorian dishes such as locro de papas (potato soup) and ceviche.
  • La Cosecha Restaurant – offers farm-to-table cuisine using fresh ingredients from the region.
  • La Hostería Andaluza Restaurant – serves traditional Spanish dishes as well as Ecuadorian cuisine such as churrasco and seafood dishes.
  • Café Mosaico – known for its panoramic views of Ibarra while enjoying coffee or tea along with baked goods or sandwiches.
  • El Rincón del Lechoncito Restaurant- specializes in roasted pork (lechón) served with potatoes, corn on the cob and avocado sauce.

  • Parks and Recreation

    1. Parque Ciudad Blanca: a large park located in the center of Ibarra, offering walking paths, playgrounds, and sports fields.
    2. Laguna Yahuarcocha: a picturesque lake situated just outside of Ibarra where visitors can enjoy fishing, boating, and the surrounding natural beauty.
    3. Parque La Merced: a small park located in the historic district of Ibarra with benches and green space perfect for relaxation.
    4. El Chorro Waterfall: a popular hiking destination near Ibarra that provides breathtaking views of the waterfall and surrounding mountains.
    5. Parque de la Familia: a family-friendly park featuring playgrounds, picnic areas, and sports fields for all ages to enjoy.
    6. Mirador de San Miguel Arcangel: an observation deck placed on top of a hill overlooking Ibarra and its surroundings that offers stunning panoramic views.
    7. Museo del Banco Central del Ecuador Ibarra: an art museum showcasing local history and culture through various exhibits in Ibarra.
    8. Casa Museo Luis A Martinez – The former home of famous Ecuadorian writer Luis A Martinez turned into a museum showcasing his life’s work.
    9. Paseo Shopping Mall – A modern shopping center located in downtown area that offers shopping stores, restaurants & cinema hall.
    10. Paragliding – Visitors can take part in paragliding activities to get an aerial view of beautiful landscapes around Ibarra.


    Pack Your Bags!

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