Saturday, November 3, 2007

Riobamba - 2nd - 3rd November 2007

I arrived from Peru, the non backpackers way I´m afraid, I flew!!
Time is pretty short now and I didn´t want to waste 2 days plus on a bus, its not cheap though thats for sure!

I arrived in Guayaguil and immediately opted for a bus straight out again! The cab ride from the airport to the bus station took about 2 mins (!!) and cost $4 the bus journey to my first destination was due to take 5 hours and cost me $4, oh the joy of private and public transport!

My plan was to head for Guaranda then Ambato then Banos staying the night there then heading off to Riobamba the next day to do the famous train journey on Sunday. My reasoning behind this plan was that along the journey I was gonna get some great views of the volcanoes of Ecuador. What I hadn´t figrured into my plan was that the bus journey take soooo much longer than they say in the book and way before I hit my first port of call it was pitch dark and to be honest I could have been on the rim of a volcanic crater and I wouldn´t have known!!

With a little amending of my plans I decided to head straight for Riobabama and as it was only about 7pm I thought getting another bus for the 2 hour journey was going to be pretty simple, think again!! I ended up getting a cab (!!) in the end but it was at a very good price, I was lucky. The next morning I got this great view of Volcan Chimborazo, the highest mountain in Ecuador and due to the earths equatorial bulge, it is also the furthest point from the centre of the earth!

Volcan Chimborazo.

In the morning I headed off to the local market which had its best day on a Saturday and people come from far and wide and oh what they bring!

The most crazy was the animals, I think it always is huh? There were more chickens than even this town could consume, guinea pigs (a local delicacy!), rabbits, ducks, pigeons and I´m afraid kitten and puppies. I didn´t spend too long in this area as wasn´t sure how I was gonna get all the cats and dogs back home if I actually went ahead and bout them all! It was one crazy market though, you name it and literally they sold it. Industrial freezers and fridges, BBQs, ovens, clothes, food (both dead and alive!), fruit, veg, flour (and you saw it being ground) really there was everything there.

Guinea pig for sale!

One or two chickens!

After my fill of market life I headed back to the train station to get my ticket for the morning.

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