Overview

Introduction

The coastal area of the Pacific Lowlands offers natural beauty, diverse flora and fauna and a rich cultural heritage. A short flight from Quito brings you to Manta, the country’s second most important port.

Two hours drive south of Manta, along a picturesque coastal road, is Puerto López, a small fishing town set in its own bay. The area also has some small, quiet sandy beaches which are well off the beaten track.

En route is Machalilla National Park, Ecuador’s only coastal national park. At 137,500 acres, the park protects the unique coastal land and marine habitat as well as small archaeological sites. In the cloudforest area of San Sebastian the landscape changes to one of lush vegetation including heliconias and orchids and is home to howler monkeys and over 350 species of birds. The park also encompasses a number of beautiful beaches, most notably Playa Los Frailes, with its white sand and dramatic cliff backdrop.

37 kilometeres off the coast of Puerto López lies Isla de la Plata (Silver Island) which derives its name from the local legend that Sir Francis Drake buried treasure here. A large number of marine birds populate the island including frigates, waved albatrosses and blue-footed, red-footed and masked boobies. The waters around the island are one of the prime sites along the coast for viewing humpback whales from June to September. Day trips to the island include a guided hike to appreciate the flora, fauna and birdlife, and time is allowed for swimming and snorkelling.

Altitude

For those clients sensitive to altitude and prefer to stay at sea level, Guayaquil makes for a good ‘gateway’ to Ecuador and a stop before/after a visit to Galapagos Islands.

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There are charming hotels and stunning train journeys aplenty - it squeezes in a little bit of everything. I love the epic rail-ride on the Tren Crucero and there is more than enough to satisfy the culture vulture.

Stephen Bray
Stephen Bray
Best time to go
  • JAN
  • FEB
  • MAR
  • APR
  • MAY
  • JUN
  • JUL
  • AUG
  • SEP
  • OCT
  • NOV
  • DEC
Time Difference

GMT -5 hours

Currency

US Dollar

Language

Spanish

Average flight times

14 hours 15 minutes. From London Heathrow via Amsterdam (KLM)

  • Average temperature

    Average rainfall

Talk to our Ecuador expert

Stephen Bray
Stephen Bray

There are charming hotels and stunning train journeys aplenty - it squeezes in a little bit of everything. I love the epic rail-ride on the Tren Crucero and there is more than enough to satisfy the culture vulture.

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The Pacific Coast

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We promise that a member of our specialist reservation teams will reply personally to your holiday enquiry before 5.30pm if received before 12.00pm (Monday to Friday). Enquiries received after 12.00pm will be replied to within 24-hours (excluding Sundays).

If your enquiry is of an urgent nature, please telephone our dedicated reservation teams on the numbers listed below.

Our lines are open from 9.00am to 5.30pm Monday-Friday and from 9.30am to 4.30pm Saturday.

  • Greece: 020 8758 4758
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  • Latin America: 020 8758 4774

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If your enquiry is of an urgent nature, please telephone our dedicated reservation teams on the numbers listed below.

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  • Greece: 020 8758 4758
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  • Latin America: 020 8758 4774

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