Quito’s Oldest Church: Guápulo

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On a foggy day, the church in Guápulo is completely hidden by the mist that covers the valley like a pot lid. But if you dare to descend the Camino de Orellana that winds through the village like tightly-spun yarn, you’ll be rewarded with the stately sight of the Sanctuario de Guápulo.

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The church is Quito’s oldest colonial church, founded by Spanish explorer Fransisco de Orellana in 1541. The plaza in front of the church bears his statue. And also, a few guys shooting the breeze on a bench.

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The colonial churches in Quito always amaze me with their attention to detail.

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And this grand old woman has recently been restored.

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One of the caretakers was busy giving this lady a bath with a scrub brush and a bucket.

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He told us we’d missed out, though, because while we were playing in the park, they’d taken down the gold statue in the centerpiece of the altar to clean it.

(Side note: my sister is pretty.)

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But our bellies were rumbling and the kids were whining. As beautiful as it was, it was time to go.

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