Lying at the centre of the world, Ecuador is crucial to our understanding of nature. Watch hummingbirds feed in the Mindo Cloudforest. Search for monkeys in the Amazon. Or snorkel with sharks and sea lions in the Galapagos. While the Galapagos Islands are the star attraction, Ecuador’s mainland is home to 14 indigenous groups and offers its own charms. You can barter in local markets with the Otavalo highlanders. Or learn about the forest from native Amazon communities. Ecuador is rich in culture and ripe for adventure. Step back into Quito and Cuenca’s colonial past, or climb to Cotopaxi’s snow-capped summit. Like the volcanoes that dominate its skyline, Ecuador may appear quiet, but life surges within.