Ecuador: An An­cient Coun­try on the Equa­tor

Beijing (English) - - CONTENTS -

Ecuador is a coun­try in north­west­ern South Amer­ica, with the equa­tor cross­ing the north­ern part of its ter­ri­tory, bor­dered by Colom­bia to the north­east, Peru to the east and south, and the Pa­cific Ocean to the west. It was orig­i­nally in­hab­ited by indige­nous peo­ples and used to be a part of the an­cient Inca Empire.

The cli­mate in the coastal plains and foothills of west­ern Ecuador is trop­i­cal rain­for­est. Along the An­des Moun­tains stretch­ing from Colom­bia to Ecuador, in the cen­tral part of the coun­try, there are hilly areas with many basins, among which the most fa­mous are the Quito Basin and the Cuenca Basin. There are also many Vol­ca­noes, the Co­topaxi vol­cano be­ing one of the high­est ac­tive vol­ca­noes in the world.

Such a geo­graph­i­cal lo­ca­tion has given birth to a unique in­tan­gi­ble cul­tural her­itage item in Ecuador, i.e. the to­quilla straw hat, which is more widely known as the Panama hat and dates back to the 17th cen­tury. Th­ese hats were eye-catch­ing to par­tic­i­pants in the 3rd “Colour­ful World” event. To­quilla is a lo­cal plant. Be­cause of its thin, long but tough fi­bres, its leaves are the best ma­te­rial for weav­ing straw hats. It takes from one week to eight months to make one. Prices vary from tens of US dol­lars to tens of thou­sands of US dol­lars de­pend­ing on the so­phis­ti­ca­tion of the crafts­man­ship. In the booth of the Ecuado­rian Em­bassy in China, the straw hats of over a dozen colours at­tracted many vis­i­tors. “They are so good-look­ing,” one vis­i­tor said ex­cit­edly “I have seen peo­ple wear­ing them in many movies. I didn't know they are from Ecuador un­til to­day. They are a lit­tle bit ex­pen­sive but they are worth it. They are hand­made. They are in­tan­gi­ble cul­tural her­itage. And I can feel they are dif­fer­ent when I wear them.” The staff of other em­bassies par­tic­i­pat­ing in the “Colour­ful World” event also came over to try them. The unique Ecuador to­quilla straw hat shines its bril­liance in the fash­ion world.

“It is the sec­ond time that we are par­tic­i­pat­ing in the ‘Col­or­ful World' event,” said a staff mem­ber at the booth of Ecuador. “Last year, we were also very pop­u­lar here. Many peo­ple came to ask us about Ecuador. This time the at­mos­phere is even more en­thu­si­as­tic and we have brought more fea­tured prod­ucts. Wel­come ev­ery­one.”

Ecuador, a “coun­try of bananas,” is also a pop­u­lar tourism des­ti­na­tion. Tourists from all over the world can re­lax there, en­joy nat­u­ral scenery and ex­pe­ri­ence dif­fer­ent cus­toms. For ex­am­ple, when spend­ing time in Cuenca and Quito, vis­i­tors can ex­pe­ri­ence the rich Span­ish colo­nial cul­ture. The old city of Quito, the cap­i­tal city, was built on the ru­ins of an Inca city in the 1700s.

Other colour­ful and dis­tinc­tive Ecuado­rian prod­ucts, in­clud­ing hand­i­crafts and gem­stones, at­tracted vis­i­tors' at­ten­tion. “I have seen th­ese hang­ing or­na­ments from afar,” said one at­tendee, “They are so spe­cial that we can eas­ily tell they are from South Amer­ica.” As the or­na­ments and gem­stones car­ried the cul­ture of this an­cient coun­try, vis­i­tors were ea­ger to buy them re­gard­less of price.

Staff from the Ecuado­rian Em­bassy in China en­thu­si­as­ti­cally thanked the or­gan­is­ers of the “Colour­ful World” event for pro­vid­ing a good plat­form and op­por­tu­nity for com­mu­ni­ca­tion: “Many peo­ple don't know much about Ecuador,” staff com­mented,

“We hope that through par­tic­i­pat­ing in this event, we can help peo­ple to know more about Ecuador. Through com­mu­ni­ca­tion, we can fa­cil­i­tate the in­te­gra­tion of dif­fer­ent cul­tures.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from China

© PressReader. All rights reserved.