Ecuador is a country located in northwestern South America. Ecuador straddles the equator and is bordered by Columbia and Peru as well as the Pacific Ocean. Ecuador is well known for its diverse landscape, which encompasses the Amazon Jungle and Andean highlands. However, in terms of wildlife, Ecuador is most known for the famous Galápagos Islands, which were visited in 1835 by Charles Darwin. Darwin’s study of species found on the Galápagos islands inspired his theory of evolution. Ecuador is home to a large variety of Amerindian groups that were incorporated into the Inca Empire during the 15th century. The Inca Empire was the largest empire in pre-Columbian America and arguably the largest empire in the world in the early 16th century. Although the political and military center of the empire was located in Peru, Ecuador encompassed a vast majority of the empire’s power and population. The World Folkfest is pleased to welcome Ecuador to the performing stage. A country with such a rich historical background has much to give us in terms of culture and understanding. Ecuador is a great addition to this year’s World Folkfest stage!