Bahia de Caraquez, Ecuador–Just Say Yes!!!!
(Editor’s Note: Here’s a glowing report of their 18-day vacation in Bahia de Caraquez by two of our readers–Mike and Tess Neuroth)
My husband and I had the pleasure of spending 18 wonderful days in Bahia de Caraquez, an eco-city in Ecuador. Bahia is located on the sandy peninsula on the northwestern coast of Ecuador on the Pacific Ocean. The weather is great. It was around 80-85 degrees our entire stay. Believe me, coming from Iowa in the winter months, it was a very welcome change!
We found the people to be very friendly and kind. We felt safe walking anytime day or night. Crime is something that just rarely happens here.
We also met people from all over the world, here is Jan from New York (center), Susy from the Coco Bongo Hostal, who is from Australia, (right), and myself (left).
It was very inexpensive to stay in Bahia. Transportation was very cheap. A bicycle taxi costing a mere 50 cents and a yellow cab only one dollar. We chose to walk most of the time.
Meals were also at a very good price. A dinner of delicious fresh shrimp and French fries (which was big enough to split) was only $4.00 – $4.50. If you like fresh seafood you are in the right place.
Bahia is absolutely beautiful. The beach and the town were very clean. There is so much to see. We spent a day on a shrimp farm watching them harvest.
They also let us lend a helping hand. We rode a scooter down the beach a couple of days. Between the cliffs and the ocean it was absolutely breathtaking.
Yes, that’s me in front of the cliff !!
At low tide people hunt for squid.
We spent a day in Chirije, which is an actual archaeological dig site. There is a great on-site museum. It is beach access only to get to Chirije, which was part of our adventure and very beautiful. You may also overnight at Chirije, with very nice bamboo cabins. It would be a very secluded, relaxing and romantic place to stay.
Bahia also has a yacht club, Puerto Amistad, which is owned by Tripp and his wife Maye. They were very helpful and spoke very good English. The food was great! They had one of the best cheeseburgers we have ever had. Who knew we’d have to go to Ecuador for the best cheeseburger ever.
You can also see in the background of this picture the longest bridge being built in Ecuador!!! The bridge will connect San Vicente and Bahia.
We made a trip across the bay to San Vicente on a water taxi (30 cents).
Once there, we hopped on a motorcycle taxi to Canoa, a great place to surf and party. The beaches are beautiful.
The Surf Shack is owned by a couple from America and is a great place to eat and have a cold beer.
Ecuador is looking to improve their tourism. They are always working to improve the roads between Manta and Bahia. The new Quito airport will make it much easier to reach. Also a new airport in San Vicente will let you fly direct from Quito.
We stayed at the CasaGrande Boutique Hotel. We just can’t say enough good things about it. It is a very large home converted into a bed & breakfast. The rooms were very nice and very clean. We had a great ocean front view, one of the best in Bahia. They also had a very nice pool and lounge area.
With a high tide and low tide view.
Our hosts and owner, Maria, Patricio and their staff couldn’t have been anymore helpful. Patricio was very quick and helpful returning e-mails when we were planning our trip. He speaks very good English, as does a lot of the staff. They were all very knowledgeable when we were planning our events for the day.
Everyone was so pleasant, checking on us every day to make sure everything was okay and to see if we needed anything. The breakfasts were out of this world…. I would suggest the shrimp omelet…. delicious. Needless to say they spoiled us.
This is what we woke up to every morning. Believe me, once you’ve stayed at CasaGrande, you will never want to stay anywhere else.
If you are thinking about Ecuador – Bahia de Caraquez – Just Say Yes – You’ll be glad you did.