The city of the Seven Hills as Guaranda is also known is surrounded by the hills: San Jacinto, Loma de Guaranda, San Bartolo, Cruzloma, Tililag, Talalag and the Mirador. It also has the nickname of "City of the Eternal Carnivals", for holding the most famous carnival festivity in the country, to which tens of thousands of domestic and foreign tourists come for.
Places to discover in Guaranda
- El Arenal: In this place you can go hiking, photographing, flora and fauna observation, horseback riding, cycling, visit the Chimborazo, the Faunal Production Reserve, the Polylepis Forest and the surrounding communities.
- Polylepis Forest: It is a millenary natural attraction of 217 trees (Polylepis reticulata), with an area of one hectare. It is located northwest of the Chimborazo Wildlife Production Reserve.
- Chawak Pukkiw Sacred Water Fountain: It is located within the Chimborazo wildlife Production Reserve, in the Guanujo parish, located in a area without vegetation, you can see the dunes that have formed thanks to the wind. This water source is characterized by having healing properties and is the origin of the Guayas River.
- Tinku Resort: The center has an orchard, fish pool, green spaces, a path that leads to various attractions. In the path you can see typical flora of the moor such as the romerillo, the pumamaqui, the zuro, the pajonal, the achupallas and enjoy of the sound of the river, the tourist will enjoy a peaceful and relaxing atmosphere in contact with nature.
- San Pedro Guanujo Church: The Main Church of Guanujo is located 5 km away from Guaranda, its facade is made of stone and is main altar is bathed in gold leaf, technique used by the Quito School of Art in the 18th century. It celebrates the famous festivals of San Pedro that are a mixture of customs both indigenous and Spanish.
- Historic center of Guaranda: In this city you can tour its parks, churches, downtown, traditional neighborhoods, buildings, colonial houses and museums. The main city streets are: the Convention of 1884, August 10th, Sucre, April 9th, Olmedo, Pichincha, Antigua Colombia and Red Square.
The climate in Guaranda is warm and temperate. Summers here have a good amount of rain, while winters have very little. The temperature here is on average 13.5 ° C. There is around 845 mm of rainfall.
Gastronomy of the "City of Eternal Carnivals"
The city and the province keeps many gastronomic treasures thanks to the natural quality of its raw material, since the province has several climates and microclimates that go from the Andean cold, perfect to get a exclusive variety of tall potatoes, up to a pleasant mesothermal climate, ideal for growing a variety of tropical fruits, due to the low level of environmental pollution, in this region growPproducts of the highest natural quality. Two of the main representatives the city's gastronomic are:
- Chigüiles de Guaranda: This is a typical Ecuadorian dish, it comes from the city of Guaranda, that is mainly enjoyed at Carnival. Its flavor depends on two conditions: the leaf must be fresh not very tender or very ripe and the cheese must be the so-called “indian cheese” That is typical of that city.
- Bluebird: This is an alcoholic beverage whose appearance has a bluish color and according to local sources, listed among its ingredients are orange leaves, tangerine, broth and chicken meat and aniseed cane. In addition, it is one of the preferred drinksby the inhabitants and tourists who visit the traditional carnival that is held in the streets of Guaranda annually.
Culture and Traditions of Guaranda
The Guaranda Carnival is a “Major Festival" of the city and the province. Guaranda is known for this tradition expression of popular culture. It is celebrated in the month of February, the holiday converts Guaranda into one of the most visited cities by national foreign tourists as there are also several previous troupes, dances, traditional and festive air before the game with water, streamers, cariocas, eggs, added to typical foods and the strong liquor called "Blue Bird".
In the carnival festivity we find the following typical dishes of Guaranda: Fried Pork, mote, potatoes with guinea pig, black pudding, chigüiles, sweet zambo, fruits and quince, chicha, among others which are typical dishes of the indigenous sector that maintains this tradition.
The carnival is celebrated by choosing the “Taita carnival, Mama carnival and the ñusta” where the contestants present themselves with their couplets and traditional clothes, which are: the sheep's wool poncho, the white pants, white hat and a white shirt in the case of men. And in women's case the baeta and anaco made of sheep's wool and a white hat
In the communities the carnival is celebrated by dressing like the Black Mama, this is done exclusively by young men and children who travel the community houses with their instruments like the guitar and the charango accompanied by a carnival couplet.
The city celebrates with dancing groups as the participants walk the different streets, with their typical costumes. Dance groups from other communities also participate in this tour, Participants and authorities from other provinces also attend.
History of the city of the eternal carnivals
The most relevant facts of the city took place at the time of independence. Is was during the revolts of rebellion against the Spanish Crown, the interregional route was a very coveted military objective. The battle of the Camino Real that occurred on November 9 of 1820, where the Crown troops were defeated, was a fundamental step within the libertarian process of what is today Ecuador; a day later, Guaranda proclaimed his independence from Spanish rule.