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Foundation of Quito

Foundation of Quito 6 December

The Foundation of Quito takes place on December 6 every year. In the week leading up to the founding day, preparation for the ‘Fiestas de Quito’ begins. During the week some public events such as parties, concerts, live shows, and exhibitions are often free for all. The ceremony involves a lot of fun activities, including parties and a traditional go-kart race.

Before the Spanish arrived, Ecuador was populated by the Incans from Peru and the natives known as Quitu people. Much of what was known about these people has been lost in time, but we do know that the city of Quito was founded on December 6, 1534, by a population of 204 Spanish settlers led by Sebastián de Benalcázar. Over the years, many revolts were led against the Spanish rule and many failed when the Spanish forces moved to quell the revolters with less-than-peaceful means. Eventually, in 1810, after roughly 300 years of being under Spanish rule, Quito and the surrounding areas gained their independence in a series of hard-fought battles. Despite Ecuador’s becoming a republic after separating from Spain, the problems and violence related to government and citizens’ conflict persisted, at the end of the 18th century, in 1882, the people rose up against the dictatorship of the then president, Ignacio de Veintimilla. A year later, Eloy Alfaro assumed office as president, and the country found itself under the regime of another dictator. It was in 1912, when Alfaro was arrested and killed, that Ecuador rested from conflict. Despite such a tumultuous past, Quito is a vibrant and flourishing city with a rich history and culture that would fascinate both natives and foreign tourists.

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