Mitad del Mundo which translates to “Middle of the World” is situated 26 kilometers away north of Quito. This is one of the most popular destinations in Quito, Ecuador and I say you should not miss going to this place.
If you know Ecuador’s geography well, you know that Ecuador is located right at the Earth’s equator. The word equator is Ecuador in Spanish. This explains why the country was named Ecuador.
Mitad del Mundo sits right where the equator passes the country. Thus, the name “Middle of the World City” was derived.
We’ve visited this place on our second day of Ecuador’s mainland travel adventure, you can also check in my video:
In this article, I will be sharing all you need to know before your trip to the Middle of the World.
Ciudad Mitad del Mundo: The Middle of the World City
The main interest in Mitad del Mundo is the monument. However, it is surrounded by a whole “equator city.” This is known as the Ciudad del Mundo (Middle of the World City).
Ciudad Mitad del Mundo is the literally in the middle of the world. You will find here the main equator monument and the big yellow equator line which is a popular picture-taking spot for tourists.
How to Get to Ciudad Mitad del Mundo
Mitad del Mundo is a 40-60 minute drive from central Quito. If you booked a Quito Day Tour, there are several trave operators that offers packages which includes a trip to Mitad del Mundo.
If you are going by yourself, Mitad del Mundo is accessible via bus, taxi, or Uber. We took Uber from Quito’s old town, it was a 45-min ride for $10 only. Here is some information about the buses going to the Middle of the World:
If you are coming from the South of Quito:
- Route 1: Take the Corredor Sur to the height of La Gasca (Av. Mariscal Sucre) or the bus station Mitad del Mundo in the Hospital del Seguro (Avenida 18 de Septiembre and América). You may catch the bus right to the Middle of the World from here.
- Route 2: Take the San Carlos bus to El Condado Shopping and then transfer to the Mitad del Mundo bus.
Tip: If you use San Carlos buses, make sure you only take the ones that go down to El Condado Shopping. Do not take any other routes.
If you are coming from the North of Quito:
From Avenida la Prensa or Avenida América, take a Metrobus to the Ofelia station, then transfer to the Half of the World – Kartodrome feeder.
Tip: Do not ride the Middle of the World feeders that stop in La Pampa and Bicentennial City before reaching the Middle of the World.
I would still recommend use Uber for a more comfy and safer ride because prices are cheap.
Entrance to the Middle of the World
It costs $5 for adults and $2.50 for kids up to 12 years old to enter Mitad del Mundo. The ticket kiosk may attempt to upsell a more costly combination ticket that includes several of the onsite attractions. A $5 ticket, however, provides admission to the “Equator City” and the monument which is good enough.
Attractions in the Middle of the World
Middle of the World Monument
The Middle of the World Monument marks the precise location of the equator, as determined by a Franco-Spanish Geodesic Expedition in 1736. Although this is where most travel services would direct you, it is not the true equator. The actual equator is located 250 yards south of the monument. This was confirmed only a few years ago with the use of GPS technology that was not available in the 18th century.
Despite the fact that the error was uncovered, the Ecuadorian government had already constructed the Mitad del Mundo Museum and a 32ft high monument on the original site in 1935 to celebrate the French mission headed by local geographer Luis Gudio.
The equator monument and the yellow equator line still serve as favorite photography spots for tourists.
This is also known as the cocoa square, where you can get the most exquisite chocolates prepared with the finest scent of cacao.
This is where you will find the ancestral dwellings that will transport you back in time. Here, you will learn more about the customs and traditions of the indigenous communities.
The train is Ecuador’s tourism icon. The railway building in Ecuador was one of the catalysts for the country’s prosperity, becoming a symbol of National Unity.
Museo Solar Intiñan
The Museo Solar Intian is a smaller and less popular attraction in Quito’s equatorial zone. Nonetheless, it’s fascinating. The Intian Museum is located nearer to where the actual equator crosses through.
You can try experimenting with gravity here. Try balancing an egg or walking right between the equator line to see if it feels any different.
As a traveler, always be wise and cautious with your belongings. There are pickpockets anywhere in the world and they are particular with tourists. Here are some quick tips that you should take as a reminder form a fellow traveler:
- Do not bring any flashy valuable items during your tour.
- Keep you bag in front of you especially when you are in crowded places.
- Bring only your essentials for the tour.
- Because the sun hits differently in Ecuador, it is important to always put on sunscreen.
- Wear a visor or hat and bring your compact umbrellas with you.