A Travellerspoint blog

February 9

Playas to Guayaquil

So our last morning in Playas...I had thought it would be nice to do more beach walk - not as much as yesterday, tho - but the sun was out full force. So we just packed up and then cooled it in the shade of the patio, visiting with the other guests and Roger. After we had lunch downtown, Roger drove us over to the bus terminal and away we went. We had an air-conditioned bus this time, which made the 2 hour trip more comfortable. So we arrived in Guayaquil and got to our hotel. We went out walking around the downtown area and along the malecon (walkway along the river). For a big city (2 1/2 million), the downtown is an interesting mix of old and new buildings. Tomorrow morning early we fly off to Lima, so goodbye to Ecuador, hello Peru.
Houses along the Playas beach

Houses along the Playas beach

Playas motor taxi

Playas motor taxi

Open air art in Guayaquil

Open air art in Guayaquil

Posted by katdill 16:16 Archived in Ecuador Comments (0)

February 8


We went for a long beach walk this morning. Luckily, the sky was overcast. When the sun comes out, it gets so hot I need to find shade pretty quickly. We walked north up the beach past the breakwater. It was low tide and lots of rocks were exposed. We found a few shells, saw some birds, but most of the tide pools seemed pretty empty. There were a few oyster/crab hunters out, but mostly the beach was pretty empty. There are some spectacular homes up on the hill above the beach. With their high beachfront walls, barbed wire, electric fence and broken glass on the top of the wall, they say Keep Out pretty clearly!
After lunch and a long siesta (I was exhausted after the long beach walk!) we met the new couple who arrived today. They are from Calgary and spending 3 months in Ecuador!
We had a city wide power outage just before we were going out for supper, so we had to wait awhile to eat. But the power came back and we had a nice supper just down the street. Unfortunately, either the power outage or the fact there are two more people using the internet, seems to mean I can't post any pictures tonight. Maybe tomorrow...

Posted by katdill 18:56 Archived in Ecuador Comments (0)

February 7

Boat trip

Nancy and Michelangelo picked us up and took us south to Posorja to go on a boat trip. We had a ride around the harbor, looking for dolphins, which did not show up, and then out to some rocky islands to see the birds. We saw frigate birds, brown pelicans, turkey vultures, and blue footed boobys.
Blue footed Booby with brown pelicans

Blue footed Booby with brown pelicans

We went over to Puna Island and got out and walked on their new road. This island has just gotten electricity in the last two weeks and has had a new road with sidewalks build by the government. They have also built rows of new little houses for people on holiday to rent. This island was isolated for a long time and almost depopulated because the young people all left to find work elsewhere. Now the government is trying to revitalize it and bring the tourist industry there to create jobs. Strange having this new road and new houses and there are only about 10 families living in the town, but I guess it's a start.Albert meeting Nancy

Albert meeting Nancy

Enjoying our boat ride

Enjoying our boat ride

After we got back and had lunch, we had a lazy afternoon. Don had another swim in the ocean in the late afternoon. Then we went out for supper with Roger. We went to the Smoking Oyster, which is right beside Juan Ostra. Juan Ostra was started by a man and his son and is very well known for good food. The son has now started the Smoking Oyster to get his name known as well. He feels that his chef skills helped make his father's name and now he wants credit himself. He is starting his own restaurant in Guayaquil in a couple of months to see if he can make it. Hopefully he does well because he makes really good food. Don had oysters and coconut shrimp and I had fish fillet with romano cheese sauce. Yum!

Posted by katdill 18:10 Archived in Ecuador Comments (0)

February 6

Monday in Playas

Osvaldo and Esperanza, the people we stayed with in Cuenca, had offered us mangoes from their place here in Playas. So this morning we set out to walk to their place (about 2 km along the road) and with only one wrong stop, found it. Carlos, the gate keeper, had been called by Osvaldo and was expecting us to show up sometime. So he let us in and he and his wife and son picked more mangoes for us than we could possibly eat in the time we have here. We walked back along the beach and the beach was pretty empty. The weekend crowds were gone...DSC02379.jpgDSC02383.jpg
We met with Nancy and Michaelangelo, friends of Roger's who do tours. They are going to take us out in a boat to see dolphins and go birdwatching tomorrow morning. They are very nice people and we had an interesting visit with them.
It has poured rain off and on today, even though it usually just rains at night here. When the sun came out after lunch, it was so hot and humid we came home for a siesta - which I think are just designed to get you out of the sun at the hottest part of the day.
While we were walking the beach after lunch, we saw a fisherman with his catch and his bargaining with a customer who wanted to buy some. We also watched a fishing boat being rolled up out of the water on big rollers. This is what they do when the day's fishing is done, get it up out of the water and above the high tide line. What a tough job, they are heavy wooden boats and it takes about 5 guys to get it out of the water.DSC02394.jpg

Posted by katdill 17:11 Archived in Ecuador Comments (1)

February 5

At the beach)

overcast 31 °C

This morning we got up and after breakfast went for a walk on the beach. Sunday in Playas is their busiest day. On the coast school is out for February and March and many Ecuadorean tourists take their holidays then. As well, many people come from Guayaquil (population near 3 million) for the weekend or just for the day. So at 10:00 a.m. the beach was packed, more people that we had ever seen on a beach.
We walked several kilometers down the beach, Don had a swim in the surf, and then we walked back. We passed a soccer game on the beach. Two real teams with uniforms, playing on a small field in the deep sand! Absolutely amazing - the ball didn't travel as far, many of the players were in their bare feet, and there were two more teams waiting for their turn. Soccer is life down here.
When we got back, Roger took us in his vehicle for a little tour of town and then north up the beach to a remote part of the beach with much fewer people, although he said there were lots more people there than he usually sees. There was a little family run food concession that he frequents and we had fried fish and shrimp there. It was very good and nice to sit under an umbrella on the beach and eat. On the way back into town he took us up to a high point to see the whole town laid out before us. Now there are even more people on the beach.
Then it was time to come home and have a siesta before watching the Superbowl, with Spanish commentary.

Posted by katdill 18:08 Archived in Ecuador Comments (1)

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