Ecuador's culture is greatly influenced by its Hispanic mestizo majority and Spanish Heritage. However, there is also distinct influences on Ecuadorian culture from Amerindian traditions and elements of African culture.
The most substantial wave of modern immigration to Ecuador consisted of Spanish colonists. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries there was a small number of immigrants from Poland, Lithuania, England, Ireland, and Croatia. African slavery was not perpetrated in the Spanish colonies of the Andes Mountains of South America, instead the indigenous people were subjugated through evangelism and encomiendas. Due to this, the minority population that is of African descent is mostly found in the province of Esmeraldas where it is believed that a slave-trading ship was wrecked in the 17th century.
There is an influence from Ecuador's indigenous communities on mainstream culture to varying degrees, but many indigenous communities practice their own separate culture, particularly the remote indigenous communities found in the Amazon basin.
Spanish is the main language of the country and is spoken as a first language by more than 90% of the population. Part of Ecuador's population can speak Amerindian languages as well, with two percent of the population speaking only Amerindian languages.
In Ecuador, you will have the opportunity to discover the traditions of the Amerindian indigenous peoples living in the Andes and the Amazon. Different experiences allow you to share their customs and become a part of the community. Ecuador is one of the rare places in the world where ancestral people have preserved the ancient customs and traditions.
Festivities and Traditions
While every region has its own traditions, there are some festivals celebrated by the majority of Ecuadorians. Listed below are some of the most popular festivals and traditions: