After 3 buses, 24 hours travel and one border crossing in the middle of the night, we finally arrived in the 4th country of South America, Ecuador. Cuenca is a pretty colonial city where we relaxed after tgis long travel.
We then left for the beach, an excepted stop as we need some rest after all those treks!
We spent a few entire days doing nothing, the dream! Actually, the schedule was tight: breakfast facing the beach, sunbathing, swimming, having lunch feet in the sand eating fresh fish, swimming again, sunset, dinner. Amazing :)
We tasted the Ecuadorian ceviche (different from the one in Peru) as well as coconut fish and a bolon de verde (a ball made with mashed banana, cheese, onions).
Our bungalow at Hostal Itapoa was great, we could enjoy the hammocks on our terrace.
We swam many times, the water was warm at this time of the year. By the way, I had to be careful as my skin had sun allergies... I think we are traveling for too long! Puerto Lopez is a really nice place to chill where it was hot and sunny all day!
Isla de la Plata
We spent so much time wondering if we wanted to go to the Galapagos or not. The price for the whole trip was really too high and it makes a reason to come back to Ecuador! A few kilometers away from Puerto Lopez, the Isla de la Plata has been surnamed the "Poor Man's Galapagos" because we can see some same animals.
We visited the island on a day trip, 1h away in boat. We were welcomed by beautiful Pacific turtles. We then started a walk on the island to find some animals. We saw many blue-footed booby as well as other birds, Nasca, frigatebird, pelicans.
It was very hot, we were happy to get back to the boat and put on our swimsuit! We snorkeled there for a bit, seeing big colourful fishes.
Los Frailes and around
We went to Machalilla national park where there are amazing beaches. It is easy to get to the entrance, only a 10 min bus ride. From there, we walked 3 km to reach the first beach. We were the only ones there! The black sand contrasted with the blue water and red crabs. After swimming and sunbathing, we kept walking along the track to enjoy more beaches and thelast one was Los Frailes.
We initially planned to stay 3 days in Puerto Lopez and ended up staying a week! This week was so resourcing and it was hard to leave.