La Basílica del Voto Nacional
Walk eight blocks northeast from Plaza Grande on Venezuela for the best view of Old Town from within its boundaries.
Even though construction began in 1892, the Basílica (9 a.m.–5 p.m. daily, $2) is still officially unfinished. However, its two imposing 115-meter towers make this the tallest church in Ecuador.
Notice that the “gargoyles” are actually a menagerie of local animals, including armadillos.
After appreciating the stained glass and powerful gilt statues in the nave, ride the elevator up to take in the fantastic views. Climb up unnerving stairs and metal ladders to the roof on the northern steeple or, even more unnerving, a higher point on the east tower.
© Ben Westwood and Avalon Travel from Moon Ecuador & the Galápagos Islands, 5th Edition