Visiting Cuenca was on our list because it’s a whole different atmosphere. We wanted to visit a few different areas in Ecuador, if possible, to get a better feel for the variety of experiences possible. Cuenca is a popular destination for expats from various countries because it’s a more international city with two symphony orchestras, plenty of art, museums and cafes, and residents from all countries. It has a greater quantity of desirable features, such as hiking trails, parks, hot springs nearby. On the negative side, it has urban features such as traffic jams, smog, and noise. Our pal from the Ft. Lauderdale airport, “Papa” Ron Cropper, wrote to say: “I absolutely love Cuenca. It is the cleanest city that I have ever been in. There is lots to do here. It’s a shoppers paradise and plenty of parks. The people are fantastic. The weather is also fantastic.” I hear it’s nearly as peaceful as Cotacachi. Gary and I were personally interested to go see it, in case we decide to retire in Ecuador. Alas, that trip will have to wait for another time.