Canoa is the perfect getaway for those who want to have a relaxing weekend. It’s a small laid-back town in the district of San Vicente in the province of Manabi. The beach is undoubtedly beautiful, there are lots of restaurants with cheap seafood and nice hostels close to the beach.
The temperatures in Canoa are between 25 to 30 degrees Celsius. Like most of Ecuador’s Pacific Coast cities, the rainy season is from December to May. So, the best time to visit Canoa is between April and November because it is less humid.
Canoa is a nice place to hang out for a few days or a weekend. Here is a list of what to do:
Sunbathing, Surfing & Bodyboarding
Enjoy the sun or check out the waves by renting a surfboard for a reasonable price. The Cyber Surf Café offers good boards for only $3/hour. The waves in Canoa are big and there are a lot of surfers trying to conquer them. If you’re not a professional, you can also take some surfing lessons for a reasonable price.
If you are not so much into surfing, you can also try out the popular local activity: bodyboarding. You can rent them all along the beach.
Watching amazing sunsets
After a relaxing day at the beach be sure to be ready at 6 pm to watch the sunset. The sun starts to go down and creates a perfect orange and red color in the sea. Nothing more relaxing than lying in a hammock while watching the sunset!
Eating cheap seafood
Canoa is the perfect place for amazing cheap seafood. Just choose one of the restaurants at the beach (basically they all offer the same plates), enjoy the view and order a delicious plate of seafood. Share the plates if you’re not so hungry because the portions are big. Make sure to try ‘camaron con arroz’ (shrimps with rice).
By enjoying nature, I don’t only mean the beach. Canoa is surrounded by some big hills and cliffs. If you want to have a nice view over the town, walk up to the church on the hill and enjoy the surrounding area of Canoa. Furthermore, there are lots of Frigatebirds and pelicans flying over the sea or high above the hills and when walking on the beach you will see a lot of little crabs fleeing from them.
Where to stay?
I certainly recommend the Sundown Beach hotel. It has his own private beach with a perfect view of the sunsets. It’s a relaxing place where you can use the kitchen or do a BBQ. The town is a 20 min. walk from the hotel and they provide private rooms for $14 per person.
How to get there?
Make sure that you buy the bus ticket before going. It’s a popular place for locals so sometimes buses are getting fully booked pretty quickly. We bought our tickets with Reina del Camino (a bus company) on the street: 18 de Septiembre in Quito. A single ticket costs you $10 and it takes a good 8-9 hours to get there. The best time to travel is during the night so you can try to sleep. There is a bus leaving at 10:30 pm and you arrive there around 6:30 am.
Convinced of the beauty of Canoa? I really hope so. It’s definitely worth a visit when visiting Ecuador and its Pacific Coast. Buy your bus ticket and get on your way to this incredible small town!