I set to work narrowing down the whole wide world to just five destinations from which they could choose.
- Quito, Ecuador: This well-preserved colonial center is the world’s highest situated capital.
Accommodation: Among the many options I reviewed, three stood out. All earned accolades for their great service and staff, which is so important for seniors. The Garden Suite is in a great location (Old Town Quito) and has a full hotel kitchen. For those who prefer hotels with a traditional Quito vibe, there is the Hotel Patio Andaluz (with a buffet breakfast and small library area for relaxing) and the Casa Joaquin Boutique hotel (also offers breakfast and is located near eateries and transportation).
Food: Go for both budget-friendly but touristy in places like: Café Rio Intag (serving Ecuador’s home-grown coffee), La Cleta (for beer and great pizza), or La Purisma (reasonably-priced conventional and vegetarian Ecuadorian cuisine).
Transportation: The public system works via electric powered rapid transport buses similar to a light rail system, and separated from private vehicles. There are three colored lines and each trip is 25 cents with an option to transfer for free at some stations. Get oriented with the areas ahead of time but in general, ask the locals; they have a reputation for being very helpful.
Don’t forget to check back for Destination #3!