Zaruma Ecuador is famous as a long standing gold mining town. The colonial churches are among its best attractions.
Zaruma is a town located in the province of El Oro, it was founded in 1549 on the orders of Felipe II to try to control the gold extraction.
The place was named after two Quichua words, "saramaiz" and "uma", meaning together "maize cob".
The town is located in the western range of the Andes mountains. The center of Zaruma consists of a large main square and an adjacent church.
Due to it resources in gold, the town was awarded in 1595 by King of Spain Philip II the official name of "Villa Real de San Antonio del Cerro de Oro de Zaruma" (Royal Town of St. Anthony of the Gold Mountain of Zaruma).
Zaruma Ecuador is famous for its colonial architecture. It was also candidate for World Heritage Site. The town is well known for its beautiful women, almost as precious as the gold you find in its mines.
The views are outstanding, and at the west end of the main square a local tourist office provides a number of lodging options.
Next to the beautiful main plaza is a gold museum that gives you the entire history of the various gold operations up to the current day and visitors can often see these operations going on today from rock-crushing facilities to other types of operations.
Many of the local mines bring their gold bearing rocks here to be crushed them passed through sluices to wash off the mud. It is possible to visit some of the small roadside mining operations and watch the whole process.
Being in the southern reaches of Ecuador, the climate is much dryer than many other transitional places in the country. This provides for sunny weather throughout much of the year.
The rainy season lasts from December to April. August is the driest month.
Zaruma Ecuador is small enough that you can get from any one part of the city to another on foot. Local trucks provide service to outlying areas, such as hiking destinations and waterfalls.
The traditional food in Zaruma is tigrillo, a mix of green plantain, egg, and country cheese, often with a choice of meat. Many local restaurants serve tigrillo of varying quality.
Zaruma is also well know for its high quality organic coffee. The Zaruma Gold Mountain Coffee is one the best in Ecuador and the world.
The Arabic beans are cultivated 900 to 1200 m (3000 to 4000 feet) above sea level where the soft breezes, spring – like climates, radiant summer sun, and cooling, humid winter rain, allow them achieve their characteristic acidity, body and aroma in addition to their smooth texture and flavor.
It's also a coffee that comes from small properties cultivated under the shade of trees. They are hand picked bean by bean in areas where growing conditions are well persevered.
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