Figure 3. Topography and Drainage
Ecuador is one of the smaller countries in South America.
Located on the west coast and straddling the equator, Ecuador has
a total area of about 280,000 square kilometers, which includes the
Galápagos Islands. Roughly the size of the state of Colorado,
Ecuador encompasses a wide range of natural formations and
climates, from the desertlike southern coast to the snowcapped
peaks of the Andes Mountains to the plains of the Amazon River
Ecuador is bounded on the west by the Pacific Ocean, on the
north by Colombia, and on the east and south by Peru. Ecuador
continues to contest the boundary with Peru, which was established
by the Protocol of Peace, Friendship, and Boundaries (Rio Protocol)
of 1942 and ceded to Peru a large portion of territory east of the
(see Reform, Chaos, and Debacle, 1925-44
, ch. 1).
Data as of 1989