Sitting on the equator, Ecuador encompasses a diverse variety of environmental and cultural destinations, including the amazing Galapagos Islands, the Amazon rain forest, spectacular volcanoes, the elevated capital of Quito and the beautiful architecture of the colonial city Cuenca.

The following information provides some broad and general guidelines about health risks and recommendations for travel to Ecuador. This should not be taken as a substitute for a personal consultation with one of our travel health doctors, whose advice will be specific for you and your trip and may include some things not mentioned here.

  • Plan Head - Calendar/Itinerary?

    Six to eight weeks out from departure is a good time to have a travel health consultation. You may need blood tests to check immunity to diseases or need a course of vaccines like rabies for example, and this gives you plenty of time to get everything completed. If you are travelling sooner however it's not too late for an appointment, simply make one as soon as you can.

  • Mosquito's and Bugs

    In Ecuador mozzies transmit a number of viruses. These include dengue fever, chikungunya and Zika. All of these viruses are preventable by taking precautions to avoid mosquito bites in areas outside of the Andes. Malaria is also a risk in parts and preventative medication will be recommended for some itineraries.

  • Eating/Drinking

    Travellers diarrhoea, giardia and dysentery are just some of the illnesses caused by contaminated food and water. Tap water in Ecuador is generally not safe to drink.

  • Vaccine Recommendations

    Yellow Fever vaccination is required for travel to Ecuador. As well as being up to date for routine childhood vaccines such as tetanus, measles and hepatitis B, the following vaccines are also often recommended –influenza, hepatitis A, typhoid and rabies. Decisions regarding which are most appropriate depend on duration and nature of travel, itinerary, age and underlying medical conditions.

List of Common Health Issues

  • Yellow fever

    This is a very serious but rare mosquito borne disease. Most travellers to Ecuador require or are recommended the vaccination either for disease protection, prevention of international spread or for bureaucratic reasons, as proof of vaccination may be required on entry or for onward travel (including to other South American countries or on return to Australia). An official international certificate of yellow fever vaccination should be carried with your passport. Advice should be sought from a travel health specialist as Yellow Fever vaccination requirements are complex.

    Read More
  • Altitude sickness

    Quito sits at an elevation of 2800m where altitude sickness may be an issue for some individual’s. The volcano Cotopaxi rises to an elevation of almost 6000m. Those summiting definitely need to be informed about the risks, prevention and treatment of altitude sickness, which range from inconvenient mild symptoms to more severe life threatening forms affecting the lungs and brain. Some individuals are more prone than others.

    Read More
  • Hepatitis A

    Hepatitis A vaccination is usually recommended for travel to Ecuador.

    Read More
  • Typhoid

    A food and water borne disease, typhoid vaccination may also be recommended.

  • Traveller’s diarrhoea

    Observe strict food and water safety precautions and observe good hand hygiene. Take a well-stocked kit with guidelines for self-treatment and seek medical advice for persistent / severe illness.

    Read More
  • Malaria

    There is no risk in the Galapagos or in the Andes above 1500m (which includes Quito). Risk is mainly in the Amazon and some coastal regions in the north of the country. Mosquito avoidance is essential. The need for preventative medication should be discussed with one of our doctors.

    Read More
  • Rabies

    Rabies occurs in Ecuador, mostly from bat bites. Canine rabies is rare. Consider pre-travel vaccination for prolonged / remote trips, well before travel. Thoroughly flush and disinfect animal wounds and seek prompt medical care.

    Read More
  • Influenza

    Influenza is one of the most common vaccine preventable illnesses in travellers. In some climates there is no 'flu season', risk being all year round.

    Read More
  • Zika virus

    A mosquito borne disease, zika is of particular concern for pregnant women and those considering starting a family soon after return.

    Read More
  • Dengue fever

    Increasing in incidence in many parts of the world, dengue is a serious mosquito borne disease

    Read More

Latest Health Alerts

  • COVID 19 (Coronavirus)

    March 29, 2020

    As there is no non-essential overseas travel at this time this article will simply remain as an information resource for COVID-19. See our main COVID-19 page for more detailed information. We hope to be able to inform our travelers once again after this crisis passes. The links below remain trustworthy

  • Sri Lanka – Dengue Fever

    January 9, 2020

    Over 48,000 cases of dengue fever have been reported in Sri Lanka since 1st October 2019, a significant increase in incidence. Travellers should observe strict mosquito avoidance measures, particularly during daylight hours.

  • Solomon Islands – proof of measles vaccination required

    December 19, 2019

    As a result of recent outbreaks of measles in various countries, the Solomon Islands' will be requiring arriving travellers from/via American Samoa, Australia, Fiji, New Zealand, Philippines, Samoa, or Tonga to show proof of measles vaccination, effective December 28th 2019. Vaccination needs to have been at least 15 days prior and