Spanish is Ecuador’s official language that business and also government, return there are dialectal differences in between Sierra and Costa Spanish; Sierra Spanish has actually been influenced by Quichua. Quichua and Shuar (both of which are official intercultural languages) and also other genealogical languages are spoken by the country’s native people. An ext than 10 native languages exist in Ecuador, and several of these will most likely persist as mother tongues. Most aboriginal males space bilingual, and women space increasingly coming to be bilingual together well. The concepts of bilingualism and bilingual or bicultural education are ending up being increasingly important.

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Ecuador is overwhelmingly roman Catholic. The roman Catholic Church plays a far-ranging role in education and also social services and also influences the selection of significant places because that festivals and pilgrimage sites, such together Quinche in the north and Biblián in the south. Protestantism continues to grow rapidly, specifically among the disadvantaged; the largest teams are the non-Pentecostal Evangelicals and also the Pentecostals. Over there is additionally a sizable Mormon congregation. Quito, Ambato, and Guayaquil have actually been urban centres of good news activity, and also many that the indigenous people of the Sierra and Oriente have also converted. Numerous highlanders space practicing Catholics, and also religion plays an essential part in day-to-day life. In Carchi, Azuay, and also Loja provinces in the Sierra and in Manabí district in the Costa, there has actually been an ext reluctance to accept Protestant conversion. A tiny Jewish population is concentrated in Quito, and there are likewise some Bahāʿī adherents.


Church of san Agustín, on the Plaza Mayor, also called Plaza de la Independencia (“Independence Square”), Quito, Ecuador.

Settlement patterns

In ancient times, settlement was widely spread throughout the seaside river valleys, highland basins, and Amazon riversides. Diseases brought by europe in the 16th century decimated indigenous populations top top the coast. By so late colonial and also early contemporary times, most civilization lived in the landscape Sierra. By the so late 20th century the expansion pattern had actually again changed, and the bulk of the population shifted to the lowland regions, particularly the Costa, through a propensity to concentration in the cities.

Parts of the coast were conquered by mid-20th-century mestizo pioneers, particularly the area come the west and northwest the Quito approximately Santo Domingo de los Colorados; isolated native populations have gradually been reduced to decimal status. A similar procedure has been arising in the northern component of the Oriente, with oil areas and brand-new highways allowing highland mestizos and also highland indigenous civilization to move into areas resolved by Amazonian aboriginal groups.

In the highlands, traditional indigenous and mestizo villages, hamlets, and scattered farmsteads are linked with a checkerboard sample of tiny agricultural plots of corn (maize), potatoes, barley, wheat, vast beans, kidney beans, and domesticated lupine, alternative with fields temporarily lie fallow and used because that grazing. Sheep are grazed ~ above fallow land and higher-elevation pastures. Before the 1960s, small-scale farmers resided in a dependent connection with massive haciendas, which managed the best flat land and also high pastures. Due to the fact that the 1960s, floor reform and economic alters have brought about the subdivision the haciendas into more financially rewarding medium-sized advertising farms developing dairy products, brand-new potato varieties, fruits, flowers, and vegetables. Highland villages and also towns to be usually built on the Spanish early american grid plan, which was centred on one or more squares distinguished by church and also government buildings.


Demographic trends

Ecuador, like other Andean countries, has actually experienced a population increase, the an outcome of a decreasing death rate and a ongoing high bear rate. Despite the birth rate has actually fallen because the finish of the 1990s, that is quiet slightly greater than the world average. This expansion has resulted in a relatively young population. Ecuador has additionally attracted immigrants from adjoining countries, largely from Colombia and also Peru, because the start of the 21st century. The largest team of immigrants consists of displaced Colombians, victims of escalated violence and also crop-destroying sprays in your country. Hundreds of Peruvians, the next largest immigrant group, come seeking far better wages after ~ Ecuador embraced the U.S. Dollar together its national currency in 2000. A small variety of Chinese and also East Asians have immigrated come Ecuador as well. Far-reaching numbers that Ecuadorans have emigrated to the joined States, particularly to the borough of kings in new York City.


Remittances indigenous migrants administer important support for family members members left behind. Rural north highlanders have tendency to migrate to Quito, seeking opportunities for revenue not available in the countryside. The rural coastal people, ~ above the various other hand, have normally migrated come Guayaquil, and southern highlanders have migrated come the southeastern and also northeastern Oriente and to the north-central Costa, and to Cuenca, Quito, and also Guayaquil. In areas where world can create a an ext substantial cash income, migration has actually been slower.

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Ecuador is a nation of enormous financial potential. Development has concentrated on agricultural, marine, and also mineral resources, with market playing a more minimal role. The subsequent production of primary goods has been subject to cycles of boom and bust, however, and Ecuador has actually sought come diversify its resource exports and also to seek new markets. The nation has enhanced standards that living, but it is still characterized by significant inequalities the wealth and also well-being.