There are a number of places to explore around Vilcabamba and I have by no means explored them all. Much more to come in this section in the future

Loja is a city and it is obvious that classifying Loja under Vilcabamba's "neighbouring towns" is to be taken with a smile. In the context of this "Vilcacentric" web site, this is where we want Loja to be, at least for now.

Someone once told me when I first got here in Ecuador that all the junk, surplus stock, left over stuff from America ends up in Ecuador. I am kind of inclined to agree with this.

Loja is like a big flea market: locally made goods are great, anything that is not locally made is …….. I’ve seen OLD manual typewriters for sale, something that you stopped being able to buy in New Zealand probably 20 years ago. I’ve seen  CD walkmans for sale, again something that you can no longer buy in New Zealand. Is this good or bad? I think it is good that Ecuador is behind the rest of the world, otherwise we wouldn’t be coming here to live as it would be as controlled as our home lands. It also helps you break the shopping addiction (if you have one) as you just don’t want to shop here unless it is for local products or unless you absolutely need something!

Having said that, I need to add that Loja is a place that one discovers little by little, not at once. I have a great time when I go to Loja because I like to stick my nose into new places and talk to strangers although my mother always told me not to :-) There are some real jewels in Loja but it takes time and determination to find them. For example, it is only 6 months after we emigrated to Vilcabamba that I discovered a state of the art ceramic factory where you can buy incredible diner sets and other things at incredibly low prices..

Read on...