Discover the Biggest Nativity Scene in Ecuador


(“Nacimiento navideño de Loja”)


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


Located in Loja, inside one of the largest cathedrals in Ecuador, Catedral de Loja, this fascinating Nativity display is the largest of its kind in Ecuador, and one of the largest in Latin America. It is the pride of Father Jimmy Arias, who started its construction in 2006.


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


This amazing exhibit receives an estimated 120,000 visitors each year. With over 1300 figures, it takes over a month to set up and covers an area of about 220 square metres (2400 square feet). It stretches for over 30 metres (100 feet) and is viewed from both sides.


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


There are thousands of tiny pieces such as these…


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


Complete with sound and lighting effects, it’s remarkably realistic with palm trees, buildings, waterfalls, bubbling cookpots, and, of course, baby Jesus.  It includes 400 moving figures, from card players and drinking guards to bakers and carpenters – there’s even a figure “wiping himself” in the privy (watch the video at the end of the post). The attention to detail is amazing…


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


Nativity scene nacimiento navideño de Loja, Ecuador


Here’s a video showing some of the moving figures. We spent an hour strolling around this display – even went back for a second tour. We were totally impressed!



Muchas gracias to Father Arias and all the other people involved in this huge project. You’ve done a fantastic job!

The Nativity scene (“Nacimiento navideño de Loja”) in Catedral de Loja is something you just don’t want to miss. Schedule a couple of hours for your visit. You’ll be impressed!

*Tip: While you’re in the Loja area, I recommend hiking in Podocarpus Park – the entrance is just south of town. Horseback riding in Vilcabamba is another unforgettable experience for brave adventurers.

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