Carnaval weekend meant we had an extra two days off…and therefore plenty of time to head to the beach! I have definitely been going through beach withdrawal since leaving Honduras and was suuuper excited!
We headed straight to the airport after school on Friday to head to Guayaquil. We then hopped in a busito and headed north along the coast to a town called Montañita. This is a tiny party/surf town that was perfect for our first night. We got in late, headed out to explore and ended up getting back to our hotel around 4am! Streets made of sand and tiki-hut stands serving tropical drinks were the perfect way to dive right into a long weekend. We felt a million miles away from school both physically and mentally!
Saturday was lazy and chill as we slept in, ate a huge breakfast, took a walk along the beach and then headed north further to the tiny town of Ayampe. When I say tiny, I mean about 10 houses, three hotels, and two tienditas. We stayed at a place called Punta Finca Ayampe. It was bien tranquilo, had great food and a beautiful view of the beach.
Carnaval is pretty crazy along the coast in Ecuador (among other places) so it was nice to stay somewhere so tiny where there wasn’t blaring music and a billion people spraying each other with foam. While that would have been fun, four days of it would not have been the relaxing vacation I was craving. Instead we soaked in the sun, played in the waves and I got a lot of reading done for my master’s program!
On Monday, we took a break from our laziness to head to Isla de la Plata. We snorkeled, hiked, and bird-watched…and I even managed not to get sick on the boat! Isla de la Plata is super different from the tropical atmosphere of the mainland. It was about a million degrees with no real trees and some strange cactus plants. We walked for over two hours, roasting ourselves, but also enjoying the various footed boobies we encountered along the way.
It was a much needed, rest-filled weekend and although I still desperately miss the Bay Islands, I think I can handle the chill surf culture of Ecuador’s Pacific coast.