The capital of the Napo province is five hours in bus from Quito. Tena is not an important tourist place and it does not have many attractions to visit. But the landscape, with the rivers Pano and Tena, that form the MisahuallÃ river, is beautiful. Tena has a high humidity climate and an average temperature of 80 degrees. Tena is an exporter of coffee, tea, sugar cane and surprisingly cows.
In Tena, it is not uncommon to find a variety of dishes. The typical food contains Yucca, Mature Guinea Pig, Zarapa (turtle soup), Liver of Motelo (turtle) and other exotic plates like Chontacuro, a worm of the Chonta palm. Which is also the typical food of Tena.
However, it is necessary to be conscious that many of these animal are close to extinction and for that reason, is not recommended to eat them. Chicken, pig and tilapia (an imported African fish with many thorns), accompanied by rice are the most popular plates in Tena restaurants. These are welcome to be eaten!
For things to do, the Amazonian Park is located on a peninsula in the mouth of the rivers Pano and Tena. This park allows you to observe trees of the jungle, exotic orchids, birds, through zoological and fantastic viewpoints. There are many places with shade allowing you to bath as well.
The Caverns of Jumandy are a complex labarenth of caves, located approximately 15km to the north of Tena and only few kilometers in the north of Archidona. There are mainly hikers who visit the park to the caves. As the caves partly are filled of water, it is necessary not to forget to wear a bathing suit and its recommended to visit during the week because there can be a lot of people.
The new National Park Sumaco- Napo Galeras is administered by the INEFAN in Tena. The office can give information on excursions to the natural reserve, which is in the building of the MAG (Ministry of Agriculture and Cattle), Simon Bolivar and Amazon.
It is not recommended to hike the difficult Sumaco volcano(3800m). The reason being, is that it is not easy to obtain an experienced guide and takes about a week of trekking through the mountainous and muddy jungle. In the cloudy and rainy forests around the volcano bears spectacles of, pumas, jaguars, wild boars, armadillos, trasnochadores and bats. Between approximately of the 80 mammals, there are 28 different types of bats. In addition, the 26 reptiles and 31 amphibious, there are a variety of birds, most variable endemic plants.
When you decide to come to Tena, be sure to bring your camera and prepare for a great time.
For excursions around Tena, you will want to book a reservation with Tena Tours. They are a popular tour group that is highly recommended.