Saturday (Feb 9) marked the beginning of Carnaval in Ecuador. Well, technically it began on Monday the 11th but since everybody likes a party the festivities unofficially began the weekend before.
A nice introduction to Ecuadorian traditions of Carnaval can be found HERE. To summarize, there are often parades, bands, hoards of children and adults alike armed with water guns, water balloons, buckets of water and cans of colored spray foam. Some other misfits unfortunately may also have eggs and flour on hand.
If you are walking outside during busy Carnaval festivities, there is the likelihood of being bombarded with one of more of these materials. Try your best to take it in stride or better yet prepare yourself with your own arsenal and join the fun….Or stay inside, especially in the evening hours when the raucous partying is in full tilt.
It seems like there is always a reason to throw a party here but officially there are nine national holidays. There are additional local holidays but the ones provided below are those specified by the Ecuadorian Ministry of Tourism.