Guayaquil │ Santa Elena │ Puerto Lopez │ San Lorenzo │ Bahia de Caraquez │ Guayaquil
In the morning you will be picked up from your hotel in Guayaquil and travel along the coast of Ecuador with your guide. First you will pass through the savannah-like landscape to Santa Elena and continue on past many fishing villages. You will discover beautiful and expansive beaches, luxurious coastal rainforests, and handicraft markets and villages. In the afternoon you will reach the small fishing town of Puerto Lopez. The rest of the day is at your disposal, you can spend time relaxing in the resort or on the beach.
Today you will take a boat trip to Isla de la Plata (Silver Island). There you walk with a local nature guide on the island covered with tropical dry forest. Depending on the season, you can see blue-footed and masked boobies, albatross and with luck even sea lions. Then there will be time for swimming and snorkeling; there is a good chance you will meet some sea turtles! From mid-June to September, giant humpback whales stay close to the coast of Ecuador, and you can watch these impressive creatures from a boat.
After breakfast you will visit the small community of Agua Blanca in Machalilla National Park and learn about their customs and traditions. A local guide will explain the nature, culture, and history (archaeology) of the region. After the tour you will enjoy a typical lunch at “Playa Los Frailes”, one of the most beautiful beaches in the country. Continuing on, in the afternoon you will arrive at the small fishing village, San Lorenzo, where you will stay for two nights in the cosy and small beach hotel El Faro Escandinavo, or “The Scandinavian Lighthouse”.
In the morning, you can take a short walk through the Pacoche nature reserve. In the reserve there is a good chance of seeing howler monkeys. Then you will continue to the small village of Pile, where the finest Panama hats are woven from straw toquilla. Visit one of the local weaving families and learn about the production of these famous hats! The afternoon free for you to do whatever you would like. Enjoy the beautiful beach, the hotel’s pool, or walk to the Cape of San Lorenzo to soak up the beautiful coastal scenery.
Via the port city of Manta, you will be able to experience the small and quiet town of Bahía de Caraquez, the centre of the shrimp industry. In the mouth of the Río Chone you will take a boat ride to “Isla Corazón”, a haven for coastal and marine birds. You will see a large colony of magnificent frigate birds, and various species of herons, ibises, kingfishers etc. The birds use the mangroves primarily for reproduction and gathering food.
After breakfast, drive to the secluded beach of Chirije. Chirije is the “hot spot” on the Spondylus Route. Archaeological remains from the culture of Bahia were found in this very place and you can visit the small museum here to find out more about the interesting past of this area. After lunch, the afternoon is yours to enjoy the tranquillity of this beautiful coastal area. The mile-long sandy beach with its rocky cliffs invites you to relax or take an amazing walk on the beach.
After breakfast you will have some free time before a late afternoon drive to the hotel or airport in Guayaquil.