Imbabura, which is a province located in northern Ecuador, has a population of about 340,000. It enjoys an indigenous community that has maintained many of its customs, such as traditional clothing, crafts and artwork, which can be found in Otavalo (one of the major cities of the province), during its Saturday market. The men are distinguished by their black hats, white pants and wool ponchos, and women often wear brightly colored embroidered blouses and dark skirts. It is also commonplace to hear the Quichua language spoken on the streets. This is a market in Otovalo:
Besides the beautiful textiles, Imbabura is noted for its impressive natural scenery. Two unforgettable destinations that tourists should not miss are the ecological reserve Cotacachi-Cayapas (pictured below) and the lagoons of Pinyan, where it is possible to take boat rides, camp, fish and hunt.
For those who take delight in celebrations, Imbabura has a variety of cultural events. One of the most popular ones is called Fiesta de la Jora, which takes place on September 6th through 14th. During this event you can enjoy traditional music and folk dances in the streets.
Finally, one cannot forget the incredibly rich array of traditional foods. The potato is one of the oldest and most important food staples of the Andean region. Consequently, many of the dishes are made from potatoes, such as stuffed potatoes, potato soup, and potatoes with meat.