We heard a lot about the magic of Cuenca when we first journeyed through Ecuador but we never made it there on that jaunt. On the way back north, we made it a priority to stop in this city full of colonial beauty. Although Ecuador’s third-largest city, Cuenca seems worlds smaller than Quito or Guayaquil. It has a very old-fashioned, livable charm to it. The only downside was that it is the most expensive city in Ecuador, with hostels and food costing much more than in most of the country.