The next leg of the journey was not so easy. I got to Santiago airport at 12:30 PM with plenty of time for my 3:00 PM flight. The plane eventually took off at 8:00 PM. The plane was held up by bad weather at Buenos Aires. Lan Chile at least had the decency to offer to pay for a meal in any of the airport's restaurants while we waited. We reached Guayaquil, the big commercial capital of Quito located on the coast around midnight and then the wheels fell off or rather one of the cabin doors wouldn't close and by the time they had fixed the problem we were too late and could not go on to Quito as the airport there was closed.
Bundled off to a hotel somewhere in Guayaquil for a restless night and then we were taken back to the airport and flew to Quito on a domestic flight. One good thing was that I got put on the private airline not the government's airline called TAP. A local said, "Oh yes, it stands for Take Another Plane." Not well respected within the country methinks. It was run and controlled by the military for many years which may explain its lack of competent service. When I arrived at the airport, no one was there to pick me up and I didn't have any coins to use the public telephones. A very nice lady from another travel agency waiting for some other tourists rang my travel agent for me to to tell them I had arrived.
Due to the fact that I arrived almost a day late I missed a tour of the colonial part of the city but managed to get it rescheduled till after I returned from the Galapagos. But oh I should have had that extra day, it may have helped with the altitude sickness. Continual headaches, nausea and fatigue, ugghh!( Enough with the whining and on with the show ) Click to go to Galapagos Day 1