Ecuador is a country in South America home to various water bodies. The Pacific Ocean borders the country to the west. The Amazon River runs through Ecuador, and the country hosts many other rivers, lakes, lagoons, and reservoirs that are essential to the country's natural and cultural heritage.
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Landforms of Ecuador
The Archipiélago de Colón (Galápagos Islands) are volcanic islands in the Pacific Ocean, roughly 600 miles west of continental Ecuador. The archipelago is known for its many endemic species and was studied by Charles Darwin during the second voyage of HMS Beagle.
Cordillera del Cóndor is a mountain range in the eastern Andes that is shared by and part of the international border between Ecuador and Peru. El Cóndor National Park is located in Ecuador, bordering the Santiago-Comaina protected area of Peru.
Ecuador, known for its breathtaking landscapes and diverse ecosystems, is home to the awe-inspiring Cotopaxi National Park, a testament to its commitment to environmental conservation. At the heart of this protected area stands the iconic Cotopaxi Volcano, the second-highest summit in Ecuador.
The Ecuadorian Andes are divided into parallel volcanic cordilleras that form Ecuador's central Andean highlands region. This Sierra natural region contains ten major basins that contain roughly half of Ecuador's population.
The Sangay volcano is located within Sangay National Park in central Ecuador, which contains one of the world’s most complex ecological environments, including a rare combination of grasslands, rainforests, and other fragile habitats.
The Andean Volcanic Belt and the Pacific Ring of Fire are regions where Earth's crustal plates interact, resulting in volcanic zones and seismic activity. The Andean belt is formed as the Nazca and Antarctic plates move beneath the South American Plate, while the Pacific Ring of Fire is home to over 450 volcanoes and an extensive network of oceanic trenches, volcanic arcs, and belts.
Nestled within the northern Ecuadorian Andes' western slopes, the Mindo Valley, or simply Mindo, emerges as a natural jewel adorned with lush cloud forests, vibrant biodiversity, and captivating landscapes. One of the crown jewels of the Mindo Valley is the Mindo-Nambillo Ecological Reserve, home to the renowned Mindo-Nambillo Cloud Forest.