Isla de la Plata

Isla de la Plata

Tours of the island, which is only reached by boat, generally last a full day and include

Isla de la Plata is one of the best attractions that Machalilla National Park has to offer. Its striking bird species, both local and migratory, and scenic beauty make this island paradise an ideal place for ecotourism. What’s more, the island is of great historical and cultural importance, given that it was used by the pirate Sir Francis Drake to hide treasure plundered from Spanish ships, and by the Manteño Culture’s chiefdoms as a ceremonial site. For interested visitors, various travel agencies in Puerto López offer Isla de la Plata tours throughout the year...

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Salango

Salango

The park also offers sport fishing for the adventurous types

Villiage of the divers, Salango is located 10 minutes to the north of Puerto Lopez. Here, lovers of history will find a grand experience awaiting them at the town’s museum of the first settlers in the area. In addition, Salango is home to an exquisite local cuisine that includes typical Manabí dishes. Visitors to the town can also explore the nearby coral reef and enjoy surface diving or snorkeling at the new marine reserve. Here, a group of divers certified as local guides are on hand to share their knowledge and experiences in preserving the town's marine resources, such as its black coral and spiny oysters.

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Humpback Whales

Humpback Whales

A humpback whale is distinctive with its very long pectoral fins, which...

A worldwide popularity of ecotourism grew with an amazing pace in recent years. Hunters and fishermen of yesterday more and more realize today that showing the nature's riches of their country to tourists turns out to be much more interesting and profitable than extirpating the already decreasing populations of wild animals. And this is particularly true in the situation with whales, the largest animals on Earth. Just half a century ago the only way to gain some profit out of whales was killing them to further use their meat, baleen ...

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Agua Blanca

Agua Blanca

Agua Blanca is located 10 minutes by car heading north from Puerto López, on the right side of the highway to Machalilla

Lying next to the Buena Vista River is a complex of temples, plazas and dwellings left by the Manteño Culture, a civilization which reached the peak of its development more than 1,500 years ago in this area. For the interested visitor, this site has to offer an archaeological museum, funerary urns and the local customs practiced in the town of Agua Blanca, as well as nearby natural attractions, such as sulfur springs and secondary forests. The Agua Blanca archaeological site is located in the heart of Machalilla National Park, and the culture’s most important center was the Salangome chiefdom...

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Welcome to Puerto Lopez

Puerto Lopez Manabi Ecuador
Welcome to Puerto López, your tourism destination in Ecuador. We hope your visit here on your travel through Ecuador will find a special place in your heart. The wonderful town of Puerto López is a peaceful and quiet place that boasts more than 35 tourist attractions, the foremost of which are trips to observe humpback whales and seabirds. During your stay, you can visit the museums of Salango and Agua Blanca, the island paradise of Isla de la Plata, the Bola de Oro and El Rocío trails, various beaches such as Playa Rosada and Playa Tortuga, our coastal areas and unforgettable landscapes, and many more attractions…
The region’s cuisine includes typical Ecuadorian meals, as well as a variety of fish and shellfish dishes for those with more demanding palates…
One of the most important archaeological zones in Latin America, Puerto López stands for tourism, nature and science.

History of the Puerto López

The canton owes its name to Daniel López, a philanthropist from Jipijapa. The son of a Colombian and Guayaquil native Carmen Saltos, López supported the canton’s development, and in his honor, the Municipality of Jipijapa named the bay after him.
Parishes and precincts in Canton of Puerto Daniel López
The city of Puerto López is the canton’s capital, and its parishes are: Machalilla and Salango. Its precincts are:  Río Chico, Puerto Rico, Las Tunas, Ayampe, El Pital, Río Blanco, Guale, San Vicente, La Ciénaga, Dos Ríos, Sitio Buena Vista, La Encantada, La Mocora, San Jacinto and el Triunfo.

Gastronomy and Fishing

Artisan fishing in Machalilla Puerto Lopez Manabí Ecuador
The Valdivia and Manteño cultures of the past were able navigators and excellent fisherman – a form cultural heritage that has survived into the 21st century. Like their ancestors, Puerto López’s current inhabitants live from the sea and its riches; fishing is their life’s blood. Artisan fishing is the predominant form. All of the Canton’s fishermen set out in their small boats to earn their living in the great blue sea. Wooden rowing boats and rafts with sails have all but fallen out of use. Instead, most fishermen currently use fiberglass boats with outboard motors, which allow them cover longer distances in less time. The fishing boats usually set sale in the afternoon to spend the night exploring their fishing spots and checking their lures, and then return to the beach at dawn. The fishermen practice their trade using sophisticated tools, such as longlines, trammels and cast nets, although in some instances, they use harpoons. The most frequent catches are, in descending order, sea bass (corvina), mote sculpin (camotillo) and mullet (cabezudo).

Humpback Whales

Humpbacks are also convenient for ecotourism because they prefer staying in shallow water and most of the time they rest within visual range from a shore. So sailing for whale watching does not require much time.
In addition, humpback whales are rather tolerant to disturbance caused by the presence of humans. They often accompany ships and do not worry even when small boats and motor boats go around them. Only young whales are worried by the ships and they try to keep off even small boats.
Humpback whales are easily distinguished from other species of whales. Naturalist guides on travel boats quickly identify them by specific...

Isla de la Plata

Visits to Isla de la Plata are carried out solely along specially marked routes. The journey takes around three hours.
  • Blue-footed boobies: At this time of year, blue-footed boobies come to the island to mate and build their nests. It is easy to tell the males and females apart. The females’ plumage is dappled beige and black while the males’ have bright white feathers. You can tell their age from the blue colour of their feet – it is bright in the young and lightens with age. To attract the females’ attention, the males vibrate their necks, spread their wings and begin to dance on alternate feet. The females respond to...

Bola de Oro trail

With an abundance of flora (bromeliads, vegetable ivory, medicinal plants and timber) in the tropical rain forest, you can appreciate within this natural remnant of the Ecuadorian coast. It is considered to be of great importance as a site of biological regeneration within the binational corridor Choco-Manabí. This green paradise, ideal for adventurous eco-tourism (walking or horseback riding) is part of the community-based tourism proposal on the Ecuador coast. The rainforest is a great alternative for national and international tourism. This interpretive trail is part of the the Rio Blanco precinct in the community of El Pital.