La Carolina Park (Parque La Carolina) is one of the most prized gems of Quito. This remarkable urban space boasts a wonderfully diverse collection of activities spread out over its 165 acres, all within the heart of the city.
Among the park’s attractions are the gorgeous botanical gardens, a small lake, a children’s library, an auditorium, playgrounds, bike paths, a skatepark, tennis courts, numerous food stalls, and yes, even a defunct 1940s Douglas DC-6 Ecuadorian Air Force plane turned into a printmaking museum. (What city park would be complete without one?)
Although it receives upwards of 50,000 visitors a weekend, the park never feels too crowded, as there are plenty of activities to keep visitors occupied. If you have a lazy afternoon to spend in Ecuador’s capital, there’s something bound to pique your curiosity at this wonderful urban park.
Know Before You Go
Entrance to the botanical garden is a very reasonable $3.50 for non-Ecuadorians. Other than that, the park is free and open to all visitors from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m.