Over the DESERT and through the JUNGLE from Cuenca to Machala Ecuador to apply for my VISA (2020)

Amelia and JP VLOG 181: We’re working with Maite Duran from GringoVisas to get our Permanent Residency Visa for Ecuador. She prefers going to the government office in Machala to file the visa applications so we made the trek from Cuenca to Machala Ecuador on Thursday to file our paperwork.

After a short break at the Ruta 59 Rest Area for some drinks and fruit (about half way between Cuenca and Machala), we descended down out of lush green farmland into an arid landscape devoid of nearly all vegetation.

When most people think of Ecuador, they picture jungles and the majestic Andes Mountain Range; they don’t often picture a desert. However, a desert is exactly what we drove through on the second half of our journey just past Yunguilla Valley.

Despite it being desert, there has been a lot of rain over the past year causing several landslides. We spent 10 to 15 minutes waiting for one of the landslides to be repaired and a scary couple minutes driving along the edge of a cliff once traffic started moving again.

After exiting the tunnel on the south side of the desert near the hydro dam shown in the video, we were greeted by more lush greenery and eventually descended into the jungle full of banana trees.

Once we exited the jungle and reached the plains, it took another 30 minutes or so to get to Machala, which is a port city with about 250,000 people (somewhat smaller than Cuenca).

The entire trip took about 3.5 hours in each direction, and we spent about 3 hours waiting for our applications to get submitted.

We love living in Ecuador and we’re very excited that we filed my permanent residency visa paperwork. I should (hopefully) receive the approval and the official visa in 3 to 4 weeks. Then they’ll file Amelia’s Dependent Visa application and she’ll receive her’s in another 3 to 4 weeks after that. We’ll keep you updated on the progress!

If you need help with your Ecuador residency visa, contact Maite at GringoVisas.com or another visa agent. That’s above our pay grade.

Hopefully you enjoyed our video, and if you did, please LIKE, COMMENT and SHARE it, and SUBSCRIBE to our YouTube channel. ¡Muchas Gracias y Hasta Luego!

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