There’s no denying the appeal of a healthy life in the Ecuadorian “Valley of Longevity,” and Vilcabamba could be just the right place for you. But how can you be sure?
If the earth truly had corners, you could say that Vilcabamba, Ecuador, landed in one of the farthest. It has a distinct aura all its own. The place itself is a bit like something out of a Tolkien-meets-Thoreau text.
If the earth truly had corners, you could say that Vilcabamba, Ecuador, landed in one of the farthest. It has a distinct aura all its own. The place itself is a bit like something out of a Tolkien-meets-Thoreau text...
I feel so spoiled and fortunate to live here,” says Tracey Krause of her life in Cotacachi, Ecuador. “There’s a real gentleness of life; it’s just beautiful in the mountains, and I love the weather.”
Six years ago, the consensus among my friends and family was that I had lost my mind. For them, trying to understand why my husband David and I, would move our two young sons from a rural spot in the Rocky Mountains to a small country in South America, was beyond their comprehension.
If you’re like most retirees, you dream of spending your golden years in a peaceful and relaxing place with a beautiful setting. No more days spent rushing to the office or battling gridlocked traffic.
Arriving in the small town of Mindo, Ecuador, is a wake-up call for the senses. You’re immediately greeted by more hues of green than you knew possible. Umbrella-sized leaves dangle from towering trees and birds of brilliant blue, yellow, and red serenade the town from the surrounding forest canopy. Enormous hibiscus and tiny orchids let off perfumed scents that float through the streets.
For Chuck and Susan Bussey, relocating to the highland town of Cotacachi, Ecuador, was the move that saved their retirement. They both had good jobs in Georgia, where Chuck was an airline mechanic for Delta Airlines and Susan was a dental hygienist.
As a child, I dreamed of living on a farm. I wasn’t much interested in tractors and combine harvesters, but the thought of a life that revolved around animals thrilled me. Alas, my parents both grew up on farms in the Midwest and had no interest in running one of their own.
“If I had stayed in the U.S., I’d be dead now,” says Warren Sklar, reflecting on his new life in Ecuador. “I was 140 pounds heavier, I was having a very difficult time controlling my blood pressure with three medications, and my diabetes was pretty much out of control.”