I spent an extra day at Vilcabamba in Ecuador when cycling as it had a laid back atmosphere. I also needed to prepare for tough day's cycling into Peru which lay ahead.
Thoughts on Vilcabamba in Ecuador
Blog post written July 2010
I slept loads last night, and woke up feeling much better, which also made me much happier! Still, a day off was probably the best course of action, especially as the digs were so cheap.
As I said in my previous entry, Vilcabamba has a laid back atmosphere which although great, does mean that getting a breakfast in before 09.00 is impossible.
Still, it was worth the wait, and fuelled up I went first for a wander and then a brief cycle around the village. In all honesty, there is not much too the place, and the heart measures no more than five blocks in all four directions of the main plaza.
What Vilcabamba is like
The biggest difference between the main plaza in Vilcabamba and any other plaza of a dozen small, quiet Ecuadorian villages that I have cycled through, is that the stores, internet cafes and yes, real estate agents are specifically set up for tourists.
There is also a growing ex-pat community here, although currently, most seem to rent houses at the average rate of 325 dollars a month as opposed to buying their own property.
That said, there are several condominium developments and gated community projects being constructed in the valley and surrounding hillsides, so it may very well change in the near future. Tidying this blog post up in 2019, I wonder if it is a destination for digital nomads now?
Would I return to Vilcabamba?
In a way, I can see why people might choose to spend several months here on a ‘time out’. There is certainly plenty of peace and quiet, it has the added bonus of access to modern conveniences and communication, its relatively cheap, and the climate (at least right now), is nigh on perfect, with warm, sunny days, and slightly chilled nights.
In fact, who knows, maybe at some point in the future I will load a suitcase up with a few dozen good books, and head here myself for six months!