If you’re planning a trip to the beach in Ecuador, you’ll have plenty of choices to choose from.
Although the beaches of the extraordinary Galapagos Islands are, without doubt, the country’s best, the mainland’s Pacific coast offers a number of excellent beaches that offer characteristics to satisfy the tastes of all travelers.
Here’s a short list of recommendations.
Located three hours from Guayaquil, this tourist town is ideal for a family vacation, offering very diverse experiences, especially surfing in its big waves, diving, and options for long walks during the day along a long beach that stretches for mroe than 1,500 yards.
This destination is the favorite of more and more tourists from the United States, Europe, and Latin America, especially for the attractiveness of its beaches and the charm of the town, which is full of shops, bars, hotels, and outdoor restaurants offering excellent seafood. It is highly recommended to take a stroll down so-called “street of cocktails” to the beach to enjoy refreshing drinks accompanied by live music and a party.
In the evening, the streets of Montañita dance to the rhythm of reggae and salsa and visitors buy crafts and dishes typical of its rich cuisine. The perfect time to visit Montañita is in the season from December to May, months when the sun always shines and the temperature is maintained at an average of 78° F.
If you’re looking for a beach without the crowds and parties, travel 3 miles north of Montañita to Olon. You’ll find a broad, quiet beach lined with beach houses.
With a pleasant climate year-round, Manta is located in the province of Manabi. Besides being a very active commercial port for tuna fishing and production, it is one of the most attractive destinations to schedule during the holidays for its wide hotel offering and excellent amenities.
Manta has excellent infrastructure with many luxury condos and seaside housing projects, Florida style, making it a very good option for those looking to buy a property and retire on the Pacific Ocean. In addition, Manta has a wide repertoire of international cuisine restaurants that offer abundant menus with selections of fresh seafood, meats, and, especially, extraordinary fish recipes such as the famous lemon fish, crab, lobster, shrimp, and sushi tuna, among many others.
If there is a downside to Manta it is the fact that the tuna processng sometimes suffuses the town with a fishy odor. There’s a reason it’s nicknamed “Tuna Town.”
Playa de Los Frailes
Located within the Machalilla National Park, Playa de Los Frailes is surrounded by large mountains and does not have lodging services because it is within a protected area, however, it is possible to camp and enjoys nature in a free and ecological environment.
This beautiful beach has an extension of about two miles of clear sand. At some points, there are paths that climbs the mountain to a viewpoint that allows you to admire the beauty of the place. From June to October, you can observe colonies of whales that visit the site.
Fun is assured in Atacames Beach, a place that offers a wide range of activities such as surfing, boat trips, bird watching (frigates, pelicans), and humpback whales that arrive from June and October to the shores of Ecuador, but especially in Atacames.
Atacames is located in the province of Esmeraldas and is offers the beaches of Tonsupa, Sua, and Same. Here, water sports, such as surfing, are very popular thanks to the high waves and provide a challenge for experts and rookies alike. The waters are always swimmable and maximum temperatures never reach 90° F.
Although most of the hotels in Playa Atacames are small, as well as the restaurants, their services are very developed and the villagers, are famous for being very friendly with visitors. The extension of this beach is about 5 miles and more than 500 yards wide in places. Along the beach, you can find typical cabins, music, dancing, and tropical drinks service. It is worth mentioning its choice of seafood dishes such as lobster, shrimp ceviche (raw shrimp), and several fish recipes.
Ayangue: A charming beach located on a horseshow bay between Salinas and Montañita is Ayangue. One of the safer beaches on the mainland coast, it’s perfect for families.
Playas: Not quite as charming but the closest beach to Guayaquil, is Playas – the official name is General Villamil. It is also situated on a bay, making for relatively gentle wave action and safe swimming.
Credit: Travel Pulse