The third largest city in Ecuador. The name, derived from the Spanish word for basin, is based on the geography setting of the city in the confluence basin of four rivers. Cuenca is the cultural centre of the southern region of Ecuador known as "Austro". The city was founded in 1557 as a part of the Viceroyalty of Peru. Lying 2,500 metres above the sea level, this city, rich in beautiful architecture, is a home to about half a million people. Cuenca is also listed among the UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Cuenca is often referred to as the Athens of the Andes for its numerous historic sites and rich culture. Apart from the thousands of tourists visiting Cuenca every year, many pensioners from North America chose the city as the ideal place for their retirement. Cuenca is can be a base for trips to the nearby national park of Cajas and an archaeological site of Ingapirca.


Malecon Alberto Santos 1846
Bahía de Caraquez

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