It’s a quick trip down the mountain from Quito to Parque Jerusalem but there are amazing changes that happen to the landscape in that short distance. We go from cool, high mountains with a fair amount of rainfall to a lowlands with increased temperatures and hardly any rain at all. In fact, Parque Jerusalem qualifies as a desert with only 20 to 40 mm of rain per year. Yes, that’s millimeters, not centimeters. Muy poco.
Despite the desert conditions, the land is lush with plants, mainly different types of cacti and low bushes, but some trees as well. The habitat is well suited for several types of birds and, as you’ve probably already guessed, we saw lots of them! The trails were very hikeable, though the afternoon sun was strong. If you come visit, remember your sunhat and bring lots of water. You’ll need it! And the bugs can be a little aggressive so bug dope or long sleeves and long pants are highly recommended!
It is possible to make this a day trip from Quito but we can highly recommend camping here as well. It’s much quieter in the early mornings and the late afternoons when the main gates to the park have closed. You’ll have opportunities to see more wildlife and to hike the trails practically alone.
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