The Iguanas of Guayaquil – Globetrotter Girls

Author: , September 11th, 2017

Iguanas of Guayaquil - Globetrotter Girls

I have to admit that I had never even heard of Guayaquil before I flew to Ecuador. And I don’t know if I would’ve gone there had I not started my trip to the Galápagos Islands in Guayaquil, from where several flights a day leave for Baltra Island in the Galápagos.

When I did do some research about the city, I found a few sights that sounded like they were worth visiting mentioned in travel guides, and I decided that Guayaquil sounded interesting enough to spend a few days after my cruise.

However, the city didn’t make it easy for me to love it. It didn’t wow me with its architecture, and it wasn’t particularly charming. It was rainy and cloudy during my stay, and even though I spent five days in town, I never found a place to eat that I truly loved.

I had read about a park in the city center that supposedly was filled with iguanas, and even though I’d seen plenty of iguanas in the Galápagos Islands, I wasn’t tired of them yet, and I was excited to check out the park and see if it was indeed filled with iguanas.

The guide book had not lied: there were dozens of iguanas hanging out everywhere in the small park, with people touching them as if they were fluffy little bunnies instead of leathery reptiles.

I was amazed how gentle they were and seemingly unafraid of people – almost like their distant relatives out in the Galapagos Islands. A lady had a stash of ‘iguana food’ on one of the benches – basically just lettuce cut into small pieces – which she was selling. I invested 50 cents in a bag of lettuce and within minutes I was surrounded by hungry iguanas of all shapes and sizes. That afternoon ended up being my fondest memory of Guayaquil.

By Dani – Full Story at Globetrotter Girls

Ecuador Gay Travel Resources

Guayaquil, Ecuador – Globetrotter Girls

Author: , March 24th, 2017

Guayaquil, Ecuador

After cruising around the Galapagos Islands, I was in urgent need of a break to catch up on work projects and to deal with the hundreds of emails that had piled up in my inbox while I was on the boat (I get so many emails these days, I can barely handle the volume anymore!).

I decided to stay in Guayaquil, the city where I’d flown to the Galapagos from, which happens to be Ecuador’s largest city, and one of the largest sea ports in all of South America. Beyond that, there’s not all that much to do and see for tourists though. A newly revamped river walk, the Malecon 2000, made for a great running track in the mornings, and for some good entertainment in the evenings (people watching, and an IMAX cinema that showed LaLa Land).

Just north of the Malecon sits Las Peñas, the city’s oldest neighborhood, where colorful little houses are built into the side of a hill, Cerro Santa Ana. The neighborhood used to be a slum, but a regeneration project transformed it into the tourist attraction that it is today. 432 stairs lead up to the top of the hill, each one numbered, so that with each step, you are painfully reminded you how many more stairs you still have to climb.

By Dani – Full Story at Globetrotter Girls

Ecuador Gay Travel Resources

Ecuador, A Legal High – Part Three

Author: , May 18th, 2013
by Ryan, BudaBB, Budapest, Hungary
Email Ryan | Visit BudaBB Website

Visit the Purple Roofs Ecuador page

Guayaquil, Ecuador

Guayaquil, EcuadorHistory and the government may highlight Quito, but Guayaquil is the largest city of the country, the most populated, and the central hub for getting to the Galapagos. Nicknamed Ruta del Sol or Route of the Sun, this is the gateway to beaches, surf spots and other coastal getaways.

Since 2000, the city has had an urban renewal project that has transformed it into a fabulous place to visit. If you want an impeccably clean and hospitable place to stay, look no further than Hotel Jeshua (www.hoteljeshua.com) at Padre Solano 1501 y Jose Mascote. A simple breakfast is included; it is nothing spectacular, but the cozy comfortable appeal of the place makes up for it. A four block walk brings you to the main avenue of the city and from here you can explore until you drop.

Guayaquil, EcuadorStart your tour by walking to Parque Seminario also known as Iguana Park where you will find hundreds of the prehistoric, but beautiful creatures wandering around the pedestrians, in the grassy areas and most often in the trees. As tempting as it is to want to touch them, it is illegal, so hands off.

Another spectacular park is the grand Parque Centenario, located in the city center. Lush greenery, shady trees, statues and fountains make this a popular place for locals to take their lunch breaks. Others come here to relax or read.

The Malecon Simon Bolivar is a riverside promenade with a tiled boardwalk that extends for over a mile. Once a crime filled city, it is now safe and tourist friendly. After having been destroyed by fire in 1896, losing all of its colonial charms, it was rebuilt with modern, contemporary architecture.

GuayaquilA stroll along this boardwalk will expose you to statues with fountains, lush parks where thousands of birds flock, amusements for children as well as free playground. However, if you enter at Av. 9 de Octubre you will be welcomed by independence heroes Simon Bolivar and San Martin. On either side are lookout towers that can be climbed for views of the city and river.

Walking south there you will find the Moorish Clock Tower and the Glorious Aurora’s Obelisk. Beyond that is a small mall if you need to escape from the heat and humidity. Cheap little food stalls line the boardwalk at this end for a quick and hearty snack.

At the far end of Malecon Simon Bolivar at Calle Loja is the Museo Antropologico y de Arte Contemporaneo. If the modern style of the building does not entice you, the free admission should draw you in for a look. There is a spectacular display of Pre-Columbian art pieces in addition to archeological discoveries from around Ecuador. In other rooms, there are displays of contemporary art by Ecuadorian and sometimes international artists.

From the museum, if you look up the hillside you will notice brightly painted houses and buildings of the refurbished historic neighborhoods of Las Penas and Cerro Santa Ana. Given the chance to peek inside, you will be disappointed to find that the interior is not nearly as charming.

GuayaquilYou will start on the historic street named for Guayaquil native Numa Pompillo Llona who composed the Ecuadorian national anthem. There you will find the stairs that head up the hill to the area named Cerro Santa Ana. A few artists make this area their home as well as having a few art galleries. Like most things in Ecuador, Sunday or holidays is not a good time to visit this area for full exploration.

For those filled with energy head up the 465 foot stairway with 444 steps of Cerro Santa Ana. Each step is numbered which should either encourage or discourage you from going further up.

Don’t give up hope, the stairs will lead you to spots of bright colored homes, cafes, bars and souvenir shops giving you a chance to catch your breath before moving onward. At the top of the hill, is fort Fortin del Cerro (‘Fort of the Hill’). This was the point where they protected the city from pirates. The cannon is still fired today for celebrations.

This is just a taste of Ecuador; there are still many other regions that have not been touched upon. Speaking of taste, the national dish is guinea pig. If you are not an adventurous eater, then avoid cay on menus.