The “futbol” (soccer if you are American or Canadian) is without doubt the most popular sport in the world and Ecuador is not an exception, the passion that Ecuadorians feel for the “futbol” is absolutely impressive. The people here watch football in TV, hear football in the radio, talk about football in the streets, read about football in the newspapers, wear shirts of their favorite teams every day and usually go to stadiums on Sunday and sometimes on middle week. If you believe that is too, try to visit Quito when Ecuadorian national team play a match for the FIFA World Cup, you will believe that the world turned yellow (the color of the national team).
In Quito there are two professional teams “El Nacional” (The National) and “LDU” (“Liga Deportiva Universitaria”: Sportive university league). Both clubs are amongst the most important in Ecuador and South America. “LDU” is over 60 years old and has 8 national titles and several participations in “Copa Libertadores de America” (the most important championship of clubs in South America), its stadium is named “Casa Blanca” (white house) which is one of the most important and beautiful stadiums of South America.
“El Nacional” is called so because it belong to Ecuadorian army and one of its rules is that only Ecuadorians players can play in the team; this team has 13 national titles therefore it is one of the teams with the largest number of Ecuadorian championships, the other is “Barcelona” of Guayaquil. “El Nacional” usually play in the “Atahuallpa” stadium, the same place where it plays also the Ecuadorian national team.
The stadiums of Quito are located over 2800 meters above sea level , this special feature is a great advantage for local teams when they play against foreign teams and it is one of the reason that have allowed to Ecuador to participate in the two lasts World Cups.
Nevertheless, Ecuadorian practice many other sports like basketball, swimming, athletic, biking, etc. One of the best place for to do sport in Quito is Carolina Park, there you can play football or basketball since there are many fields for these sports; but also there you can do skateboarding and rollerblading in the skate park, bicycle racing on a course that resembles nothing more than a track from Excitebike, tennis, etc.
The travel agencies in Quito offer also many adventure sports since at outskirts of the city there are many ideal places for to practice rafting, glider and hiking. Besides, you can climb many mountains like the “Cotopaxi” volcano, the symbol of Quito.
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