As were planning our trip to Peru and Galapagos, each travel agent we spoke to recommended a day in Quito, Ecuador. I wasn't very familiar with Quito so I decided to do a little bit of Googling. Long story short...I wasn't very encouraged by what I found. A handful of travel bloggers mentioned that it felt extremely dangerous while they were there and highly recommended not going.
Our travel agent assured us we would be safe, but in my head I planned that I would stay in our hotel for the 24 hours we were there on the way to Galapagos.
Looking back now, I'm really glad that I didn't sit in the hotel because I really did feel mostly safe in Quito. Of course we took a lot of precautions:
1. We hired a tour guide from Latin America for Less who stayed with us the entire day
2. We didn't walk around at night (but we did walk around without our guide during the day in the main area)
3. We didn't carry anything valuable or touristy with us (no cameras, no backpacks, etc)
4. We had our hotel and the restaurant call us a registered taxi (there are a lot of fake taxis in Quito)
After all of the precautions we took, Quito ended up being one of my favorite places we visited. Our tour guide Gina was unreal and we really, really enjoyed exploring her city.
Even though I was most afraid of taking a taxi to dinner, we ended up eating at one of the most incredible restaurants of the entire trip: Urko. The taxi ride both ways was entirely fine and we enjoyed our night out in Quito.
With the right precautions, I would 100% recommend visiting and enjoying your time in Quito.
Have you ever been to a new city where you didn't feel safe? I would love to hear about it in the comments.