El Panecillo is a giant mound (panecillo means "little loaf") in the middle of the capital city topped by a giant statue of the Virgin of Quito standing on an alligator. Or maybe it's an octopus? with a dog head? an eel? It's supposed to be a serpent.
The Virgin of Quito is the guardian and protector of the city.For a small sum, you can go inside the statue, and climb up the stairs out to the top. Each floor inside is decked out like a museum, so you can also check out how the statue was put together (in 1975)
and see some beautiful stain glass windows depicting other guardian saints.
And the view from the top was extraordinary.
You could see a whole lot of the city!Also, you can barely see, in the right-hand corner there are telephone wires and an old burnt tree covered in scraps of colorful cloth. People love to fly kites from up here, and the pretty rags waving about in the wind are actually unlucky remains.