Ecuador, a Crown of Many Jewels

Ecuador has a crown containing many faceted jewels, such as Quito, Cotacachai, Loja, Manta, Salinas, Cuenca and many others. One such jewel is the town of Nabon filled with historic Ecuadorian style architecture, beautiful vistas and beautiful orchids.

On a recent visit, I marveled at how much the town made one feel welcomed. You did not feel like a stranger there. According to our guide, Sole, a native of Nabon, most days one will be greeted by the children who will run out to greet you. The day we visited, it was the last few days before school started again and everyone was out with families and enjoying the last few days of “freedom” from the toil of educational requirements.

Although small in size, Nabon is big in heart and is very clean. The citizens take extreme pride in how the town looks and that pride is reflected in how fresh and inviting Nabon looks when one enters. Even though the buildings surrounding the central park are hundreds of years old, they look as fresh and inviting as if they had been just built. The park located in the center of the town has a large sculptured dish to represent the sun and the park itself is filled with tropidary, beautiful flowers and amazing views.

Located higher in the Cajas, it was a little cooler than Cuenca and this particular day, there was sunshine alternating with fog and misty rain. Even so, Nabon was a delight to see and explore and with a sampling of some of its culinary wares, a wonderful experience.

One of the highlights of our visit was the Orchid center, which contains over 230 orchids that can be found all over Ecuador. Unfortunately, we happened to visit when there were few orchids in bloom, but there were enough to give you an idea of size, variety and beauty. Some of the blooms were so tiny, you had to look twice to make sure of what you were seeing.

The second highlight of our visit was a trip to Laura’s, combination artist retreat, restaurant and Agave products.  The agave plant not only produces some medicinal products, but produces a wonderful honey and liquor. Laura and her husband are a wonderful couple who love to give people a unique experience, enjoy a sampling of their life high in the Cajas and provide a delicious meal. After our lunch, we were invited to wander around their little piece of heaven and enjoy the spectacular views. The encroaching fog and mist, along with the various pieces of art and animals, gave a fairy-tale feel to the area.

Should you come to Ecuador, be sure to put Nabon on your list of places to see, I don’t think you will be disappointed.

Before I close, I want to offer prayers to those who have endured not only Hurricane Harvey in Texas, but Hurricane Irma, two of the most powerful hurricanes in recent history, to make landfall within weeks of each other. The destruction is unbelievable. Our prayers are also going to the people of Mexico who suffered an 8.1 earthquake. Mother Nature is truly a powerful force and events like this makes me wonder if this is her way of reminding us that we only have one earth and we need to quit abusing it.

Until next time my friends, God’s blessings on you and may you and yours enjoy all the best that life has to offer. Get out and enjoy all that surrounds you and leave your gaming devices at home, put away the cell phone and iPad and quit texting, as you don’t know what you’re missing on this big blue marble we call home.

Hasta Pronto,

Terri at the Drake’s Nest in Cuenca, Ecuador

 

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