Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Guayaquil - Iguanas and Malecon 2000

Guayaquil Cathedral

Guayaquil is Ecuador's largest city and unfortunately it has a reputation for being dangerous, however recent development by the city has made it much safer for tourists.
One thing that I noticed here is that unlike other south American cities, the central part was completely deserted at night. Owing, I was told, to the fact that it was very dangerous after dark.

The city has developed the once dangerous dock area into the Malecon 2000 - a boardwalk along the river filled with shops and bars.

One of the tall ships docked at Malecon

The Malecon leads all the way to the historic Peñas barrio.

Las Peñas from Malecon

The Peñas barrio contains many buildings from the colonial period, many of which have been turned into bars - making it a very live area, especially at night.

Historic street in Las Peñas

There are over 400 steps to the lighthouse at the top of the hill.

The steps in Las Peñas

And from here you can get a panoramic view of the city.

Guayaquil from Las Peñas

Another view of Guayaquil from Las Peñas

The river from Las Peñas

Also in Guayaquil is the Iguana park where many iguanas run freely through the gardens

An Iguana

And the trees

Iguanas in the trees

The park also has a band shell in which the local police band played while I was there, sparking a fiesta in the park

A fiesta

The newer parts of Guayaquil consisted mainly of gated communities and soulless shopping centres, however in these areas there were many bars and restaurants that played live music and had a good atmosphere, but sadly, they could've been bars anywhere in the world. 

Malecon 2000 and Las Peñas really were the only places worth visiting in Guayaquil.