San Francisco de Quito , or Quito , is the capital cityof Ecuador in north-western South America.
Quito is located in north-central Ecuador in the Guayllabamba river basin, onthe eastern slopes of Pichincha, an active stratovolcano in the Andes mountains.
Quito is the second most populous city in Ecuador, after Guayaquil. It is alsothe capital of the Pichincha province and the seat of Metropolitan District ofQuito.
In 2008 Quito was designated as the headquarters of the Union of SouthAmerican Nations.
The central square of Quito is located about 25 km (15 miles) S ofthe Equator; the city itself extends to within about 1 km (0.6 miles) ofit. A monument and museum marking the general location of theequator is known locally as la mitad del mundo (the middle of the world),to avoid confusion. The word ecuador is Spanish for equator.