Explore on your own
A stroll along the Malecon 2000, through the city’s botanical gardens, which sits alongside the voluptuous Rio Guayas – the Pacific Ocean’s largest river delta in South America – is a great way to get a feel for the city. Alongside the Malecon are Guayaquils Botanical Gardens, as well as parks for little children and strategic places to stop for an ice cream! If you are staying at the Hotel del Parque, you may want to visit the Parque Historico which offers the chance to see some of the wildlife from Ecuador’s coastal regions.
Ecuador’s Largest City
Guayaquil is a steamy tropical port city, Ecuador’s commercial capital and the country’s largest city. It receives as many international flights as Quito (many international flights stop off in both city’s) making it an ideal stopping off place for guests who wish to avoid the altitude of Quito, or who just want to get out to the Galapagos as quickly as possible. Flights to Galapagos from Guayaquil are around an hour shorter than from Quito and the city now has a selection of very good hotels for us to choose from.
A 3 hour city tour with a bilingual local guide allows you to take in all the highlights, including Barrio las Penas, the historic neighbourhood from where the original city once grew, where many artists and poets once lived (even Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara is rumoured to have lived here). You then head along the Malecon 2000 learning about the history of the city and onto the Iguana Park, (officially Parque Seminario) where dozens of green iguanas of up to 1 meter long interact with each other and the park’s human contingency!