Montañita (17/05/2018-20/05/2018): Surfing Waves
I heard Montañita was wild, so I thought I better visit. This little hippy beach town is one of the top surfing spots in Ecuador, and is well known as one of South America’s prime party destinations. On my way on the bus, I made friends with a crazy, half British half Portuguese girl named Jordana Dangerfield. Yes, that is her real name. She was tall, fun, fiesty, and had a bronze goddess tan I would have died for. Upon arrival to this little town, we thought "oh god, what have we done?!". Montañita was tourist restaurant after tourist restaurant, souvenir shop after souvenir shop. Dread-locked hippies selling their hand-made jewelry and tacky market stalls lined the streets. Little did we know, once night time hit, this quiet beach town really came alive.. backpackers, party goers, families, dogs (there were many many dogs) filled the streets. Activities to do here were drink cervesa, surf, watch live bands, and party like there is no tomorrow.
So... surfing... The waves were so high and powerful that it was nearly impossible to simply walk into the water and enjoy the ocean, and instead, I had to be careful not
to get swept away. So I decided to give surfing a miss, and stick to what I know. With glowing psychedelic graffiti clad walls, epic sea views, and a mind-blowing sound system, The Lost Beach Club
is ranked 52/100 of the World's best clubs by DJ MAG. I fell in love with this crazy, two-storey club mansion along the seafront. We partied here both Friday and Saturday night, only managing to dance to a mere 6am both days.. it shuts at 10am!
Jordana and I were inseperable for the three days I spent here, which we initially thought would be one. Infact, last I heard, she is still there now. We said our goodbyes and in preparation for my very first night bus, I filled up on a huge bowl of healthy quinoa. Only joined for 10 minutes by a small dog wearing an I HEART MONTANITA top. Ahhh, I will miss this crazy place. Guayaquil (15/05/2018-17/05/2018): Surfing Couches
Feeling brave, I thought I'd give Couch Surfing
a shot after hearing such great things. Mum and dad look away now. Spending a night in a foreign country with total strangers in their own home? Why not. I had a
look online through the list of potential hosts and picked a 35 year old chap, Carlos, and sent him a message. He replied instantly, "hola Amy, sure, I'd love you to come and stay". Carlos is 35 and lives with his family. He is friendly, thoughtful, and has a great sense of humour. He teaches English on Saturdays to the locals and is a flight attendant as and when needed. He kindly met me at the bus terminal and we took 2 local, rammed buses to his home town just outside Guayaquil. I was greeted with smiles and (an enormous bowl of) ice cream from his (non-English speaking) family and shown my bedroom up some rickety wooden stairs which every time I would use Carlos would shout "Amy be careful!" I met his mum's box of chirping chicks and his two cats which loved to bite feet (argh!). It was a very, local experience indeed... there were certainly no gringos in this town. He is clearly proud of his city and although I had planned to leave the next day, I couldn't resist his hospitality and his plans for a full city tour the next day, and I ended up
staying 2 nights.
The tour included a visit to the Parque Iguanas (the iguanas were huge and scary), the city hall, the waterfront promenade, and we climbed up the 444 steps up cobblestone alleys to Fortín del Cerro, which offered an absolutely stunning view over Guayaquil. And in the evening, he took me to the night fish market where fish the size of dolphins were being cut and sold. I wadded through the flip-flop deep, icy fishy water of the market.. and the salty water stung my cuts from all the walking we had done during the day. We bought a huge bag of camarones
(prawns) for his mother to cook ceviche. After the sheer amount of attempted fleecings in S America, I could not get over the kindness of Carlos and his family (I took him out for cena
as a thank you). This was true altruism and I will never forget it. Ciao, Ecuador
I had spent only two and a half weeks doing my chosen spots in this small, but diverse country. I had trekked in the mountains, explored colonial cities, partied hard on the beach, seen some beautiful landscapes, and met some
awesome friends. My time in Ecuador was absolutely unforgettable. Now it was the time for my third country.. (yikes, already).. Peru!
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