banos is quite a touristy spot in ecuador, i'd spoken to a lot of people that went there, which conversely lowered my expectations. i thought it can't be that special if everyone goes there. well i was wrong, it was special, and this photo serves as pretty good evidence. there's a road called la ruta de las cascadas
which directly translates as route of the waterfalls
. as the route was mostly downhill i hired bicycles with some friends to take in the scenery. this was the last waterfall we saw, and after stopping for some sandwiches, we decided to go for a swim in the pool below. it was colder than it looked, but still a lot of fun, and seemed to act as a catalyst for all the other visitors to get wet. as we were drying off and preparing for the steep ascent back to la ruta this rainbow appeared in front of the waterfall. the effect was mesmerising and magical - so much so that after about 15 minutes i had to leave because it was too beautiful. i could have easily stared at it for hours.
here's the original