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Northern Coast: Esmeraldas & Manabi
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> Main Attractions

Machalilla National Park
With virgin white beaches, lush endemic vegetation and the Isla de la Plata, where some Galapagos species live, national and foreign tourists frequently visit Machalilla National Park throughout the year, especially from June to October, the time when whales arrive from Antarctica for mating. It is found 80 km to the south of Portoviejo, it also houses interesting archeological sites with remains from the Machalilla culture, like Agua Blanca. It also includes the Salango island where species in danger of extinction, like the anteater, are protected.

Súa is a fishing beach that is found 6 km on foot from the beach at Atacames. Fishing activities are the main attraction at this beach. There are few hotels here in comparison with Atacames but there are three or four good hotels and places to eat. If you are looking for peace and quiet, this is the ideal beach.

Muisne is an island paradise and is almost virgin, visited only by the few people who go there. This island is a port where you can still find mangroves. The mangroves of Muisne are currently in danger from the shrimp farms, however, because there are few mangroves remaining on the coast, it is worth the effort to protect them.

Crucita is a fishing beach, long and surrounded by other beaches that are just as or more beautiful. Manta is near Crucita and you can get to it easily from this city. Also nearby are San Jacinto and San Clemente, two beaches that are also inhabited by fishermen. In Crucita, you can find more hotels than in the two previous beaches and you can also find restaurants with delicious coastal food.

Cayapas-Mataje Ecological Reserve
This mangrove ecological reserve consists of 52,300 hectares and counts on the presence of six different species of mangrove. The tallest mangrove forest in the world is also found in this reserve. During June and July, a large number of migrating bird species pass through this reserve. In the middle of the reserve is San Lorenzo, a city that has some restaurants and hotels. For moving around within the reserve, you need a small boat, the entire area is found at sea level.

Cotacachi-Cayapas Ecological Reserve
This ecological reserve is very large, 204,420 hectares. Numerous animal species live within the reserve and it is a great place to watch birds. The reserve extends from the volcano of Cotacachi at 4,939 m down to the San Miguel river at 200 meters above sea level. The difference between these two altitudes creates a variety of climates. The thick forests that unite the upper and lower parts limit access to people which is good for conserving the biodiversity of the reserve. In the lower section is found the Chachi indigenous community, a community that produces a lot of handicrafts and sells them in the markets in the Mountains. In the reserve there are jaguars, tapirs, spectacled bear, anteaters and armadillos.

Esmeraldas Beach
Where to Stay in Esmeraldas & Manabi
We recommend you to visit these informative links:
Esmeraldas Beach Hotels
Manabi Beach Resorts
Manta Hotels, Hostels, Bed & Breakfast


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