Mitad del Mundo
Mitad del Mundo in Quito, Ecuador is a monument situated in a small square that has a yellow line drawn down the middle of it, which divides the Northern hemisphere and the Southern hemisphere. Mitad del Mundo literally means ‘half of the world’, though most people translate it as ‘middle of the world’ (Middle Earth anyone? No?).
Because of this divisional line, you can be in two places at once!
The line itself has been drawn on the latitude line 0°-0′-0″, so that as you walk around the monument, you will switch hemispheres depending on whether you are on the north or south part of the line. And if you stand directly on the line, you are essentially standing on the Equator.
You can spend a lot of time walking around outside because there are numerous picture opportunities, like:
One foot in each hemisphere
Walking the equatorial line
Taking a picture with the coordinates
Duplicating yourself so that you are in each hemisphere
Once inside the monument, you can take a lift to the top where you are met with a different view of the grounds below as well as a look at the surrounding mountains.
On the way back to the ground floor, there are different displays set up to look at while going down the stairs, as well as maps and pictures that form somewhat of a miniature museum.
The surrounding square is a charming and peaceful way to spend the afternoon with colorful shops to look into and a few restaurants scattered about.
Head to the 2nd floor of Plaza Sol for a large cerveza and camarones al ajillo (garlic grilled shrimp–very tasty!) while enjoying the view. If your lucky, you may even visit on a day where they have live music in the square!