Ecuador
For a topic outline on this subject, see List of basic Ecuador topics.

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Ecuador (/ˈɛkwədɔːr/ (About this soundlisten) EK-wə-dor; Spanish pronunciation: [ekwaˈðoɾ] (About this soundlisten); Quechua: Ikwayur; Shuar: Ecuador or Ekuatur), officially the Republic of Ecuador (Spanish: República del Ecuador, which literally translates as "Republic of the Equator"; Quechua: Ikwadur Ripuwlika; Shuar: Ekuatur Nunka), is a country in northwestern South America, bordered by Colombia on the north, Peru on the east and south, and the Pacific Ocean on the west. Ecuador also includes the Galápagos Islands in the Pacific, about 1,000 kilometres (620 mi) west of the mainland. The capital city is Quito, which is also its largest city.

The territories of modern-day Ecuador were once home to a variety of Amerindian groups that were gradually incorporated into the Inca Empire during the 15th century. The territory was colonized by Spain during the 16th century, achieving independence in 1820 as part of Gran Colombia, from which it emerged as its own sovereign state in 1830. The legacy of both empires is reflected in Ecuador's ethnically diverse population, with most of its 17.1 million people being mestizos, followed by large minorities of European, Amerindian, and African descendants. Spanish is the official language and is spoken by a majority of the population, though 13 Amerindian languages are also recognized, including Quichua and Shuar.

The sovereign state of Ecuador is a middle-income representative democratic republic with a developing economy that is highly dependent on commodities, namely petroleum and agricultural products. It is governed as a democratic presidential republic. One of 18 megadiverse countries in the world, Ecuador hosts many endemic plants and animals, such as those of the Galápagos Islands. In recognition of its unique ecological heritage, the new constitution of 2008 is the first in the world to recognize legally enforceable Rights of Nature, or ecosystem rights. It also has the fifth lowest homicide rate in the Americas. Between 2006 and 2016, poverty decreased from 36.7% to 22.5% and annual per capita GDP growth was 1.5 percent (as compared to 0.6 percent over the prior two decades). At the same time, inequalities, as measured by the Gini index, decreased from 0.55 to 0.47. Read more...

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Photographed in the Historic Center of Quito at the Old Military Hospital are these antique dug out canoes in the courtyard
Indigenous peoples in Ecuador, also Native Ecuadorians or Native Americans, are the groups of people who were present in what became Ecuador before the Spanish colonization of the Americas. The term also includes their descendants from the time of the Spanish conquest to the present. Their history, which encompasses the last 11,000 years, reaches into the present; 25 percent of Ecuador's population is of indigenous heritage, while another 70 percent is of mixed indigenous and European heritage. Read more...

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The following are images from various Ecuador-related articles on Wikipedia.

Did you know...

  • ...that Ecuador's biodiversity is amongst the highest in the world. For instance more than 16,000 species of plants, including 4,000 species of orchids.
  • ...that the fastest-growing cities, receiving the least media attention, Esmeraldas, Manta, Salinas, and Machala all being port cities have doubled their growth, and have the most stable economies in the country, leaving Nueva Loja, the only inland city to have equalled that growth.
  • ...that Quito (the capital of Ecuador) has the highest cable car in the world.
  • ...that Quito (the capital of Ecuador) has the most extensive colonial district of Latin America.
  • ...that Guayaquil (Ecuador's largest city) has the most modern airport of the Latin American region... (see municipalidad de guayaquil in red)
  • ...that Panama hats are not actually made in Panama but in Ecuador.
  • ...that Guayaquil (Ecuador's largest city) became the first intelligent city in incorporating a global free internet access at the hot spots of the city.
  • ...that it is the only place in the world where you can actually visualize that you are standing on the northern hemisphere as well as on the southern hemisphere.

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Iglesia de Santo Domingo, Quito, Ecuador, 2015-07-22, DD 202-204 HDR.JPG
Church of Santo Domingo, Quito
Chapel of the Rosary within the church of Santo Domingo, Quito

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