Canoa

Travel Guide South America Ecuador Canoa

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Introduction

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© jordandem

Canoa is a small fishing village and popular with travellers looking for some fun in the sun and relax on the beach or be more active and go surfing or paragliding.

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Sights and Activities

  • Surfing: Canoa has some nice surf to learn or perfect your skills. 16 kilometres of beach break with no rocks, no reef and no riptide means nice conditions for beginners and moderate waves in peak surf season which is from January through April.
  • Parapente. Or paraglide. An American has setup a school Fly Canoa which offers several courses. If you don't have time or the desire for this there are also inexpensive tandem flights available so you can get a taste of flying.
  • Adicto Surf & SUP cafe (http://www.adictosurf.com) teaches expert Stand Up Paddle boarding, SUPyoga, and SUPsurf lessons and offer board rentals. They have a bodyboard, SUP, and surf school for the local kids and educate on vegan health foods in the community through the cafe. If your a vegetarian or vegan stop in for volunteer opportunities.
  • SurfShak organizes paragliding, kayaking, surf lessons and rentals, custom swell specific surf tours up and down the coast, whale watching tours, kayaking cave tours and much more. Stop by the Surf Shak and speak with the team about booking a trip.
  • Betty Surf & Yoga, ☎ +593 98 94-4830 (mobile), e-mail: betty@bettysurfandyoga.com. Office: M-F 08:00-13:30. Bilingual certified instructors offering: daily yoga classes, beginner surf lessons, and a 3-day surf and yoga course complete with slacklines, balance Indo Boards and aerial hammocks. They often feature workshops, retreats and teacher training and are the founders of the Community Surf & Yoga Project.
  • Teach as a volunteer at the bilingual grammar school through the James Dean Byrd Foundation. If you want to volunteer for just a day you may also contact Betty Surf & Yoga about their community project.
  • Beachcombing along the beautiful beach at Canoa can be quite rewarding as some beautiful tropical sea shells wash up. One annoying aspect of the popularity of the beach is that, like any popular Ecuadorian beach it often has a lot of rubbish on it at the end of each day. (Canoa itself is known for its ecological pride, but the rubbish is washed in from other coastal areas. You can avoid making this worse by avoiding plastic bottles.) Even if you are not staying at Hotel Bambu, they will give you one free cocktail if you fill a bag up with rubbish - you can fill a bag quite quickly and it's a free drink and a great way to keep the beach clean, so everybody wins.
  • Take a trip to Rio Muchacho Organic Farm. They offer 1-3 day tours with activities including horse trek to howler monkey forest and waterfall, making chocolate and coffee from the bean, making necklaces, bowls, and rings from natural materials, and lots more. They also offer volunteer programs for the farm and eco-schools. You can get more information on Rio Muchacho or other tours in Ecuador at their office in Canoa which also sells fair trade items.

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Getting There

Every 30 minutes there is a bus connection with San Vicente or Bahia de Caraquez. From Bahia 4 busses daily leave to Quito (two in the morning (06:30, 09:00) and two in the evening).There are now direct buses to Quito and Guayaquil to and from Canoa.

There is also a bus route up the coast to Pedernales. There are direct buses between Canoa and Puerto López, Montañita and Manta.

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Learn

The Canoa Spanish School is a great place to learn Spanish while enjoying the beach. It is located at the Sundown Inn on the beach just south of town. You can get a 4-week program with private beachfront room, all meals and 80 hours of private tutoring for around USD800.

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Eat

  • Restaurante Genesis, Javier Santos #306 (main road), has cheap and decent fish dishes. They may try to get more money out of you by bringing more (or more expensive) dishes than what you ordered.
  • Jixsy (where the main road meets the beach) has good prices and food, including non-fish dishes. The staff is very friendly and will go out of their way to make the dish you want. Good vegy options.
  • Costa Azul (opposite Jixsy), is recommended against. The menu lacks variety, and they couldn't manage to cook edible rice. The staff and owners are also known for having an attitude.
  • The Surf Shak, on the malecon, is a great North American style restaurant that offers burgers, pizza, spaghetti, etc. The food is the best non-Ecuadorian in the area and the prices are quite reasonable.
  • Adicto Surf & SUP cafe, 133250 Canoa (across from Bambu hotel, back one street from the beach.), e-mail: info@adcitosurf.com. Vegan cafe open for tourist season each Dec - May. They have lots of healthy options like bean burritos, quinoa stir-fry, zucchini pasta with slow pressed veggie juices, great cafe, and even vegan ice cream and desserts

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Sleep

  • Coconut Hotel. The Coconut Hotel offers stand-up paddle board lessons along with Hatha and Vinyasa yoga lessons twice daily. Hostel and private rooms available from $10-25 a night. Food and drink service available, as well as board and bike rentals.
  • Green House Surf Canoa. A long-term hostel that offers short and long term surf camps. Housing, meals, and surfing lessons are included in all packages. The hostel also offers touristic excursions, Spanish lessons, and volunteer opportunities as well.
  • Hostal Coco Loco. Dorm beds $6 and privates from $15. On the beach with great views from every room, comfortable cheery rooms, hot showers, and a communal kitchen. Friendly and helpful Alaskan owner. Stop by and ask the staff and enjoy a 2-for-1 cocktail during happy hour, 19:00-20:00.
  • Hosteria Canoa, e-mail: ecocanoa@mnb.satnet.net. Or canoa@hosteriacanoa.com. Has hotel style rooms with A/C as well as individual cabins with three single beds and a seprate bedroom with a queen. The nice pool is in the center of this hosteria with the beautiful and somewhat secluded beach a short walk away. Good food, drinks and views from the upstairs restaurant.
  • Hotel Baloo. Is probably the quietest and most laid back place in town, away from all the obnoxious loud music that you will find on the beach closer to the busy end of the town. Great steaks on Saturday night, also pork ribs and langostinos (lobster). Free Wi-Fi and pool table as well as reasonably priced laundry service. $7-15 per person.
  • Hotel Bambú. Is right on the beach. It rents out cabins or hotel rooms or you can pitch your own tent. Besides accommodation there is a busy restaurant and bar. If you fill one of their large (not small!) bags with trash from the beach you get a free cocktail. Furthermore there is a pool table, table tennis, free Wi-Fi, laundry service, and surfboard rental. The happy hour (17:00-18:30) is a good time to meet other travellers. The mood is very relaxed and during this time you get a "2 for 1" deal on cocktails. $4-20.
  • Camping Iguana (One block from the beach towards the south end of town). Quiet little campsite with kitchen, BBQ, hammocks, Wi-Fi. After the 2016 earthquakes, the dorms are not usable anymore. You are only allowed to pitch a tent or sleep in a hammock. $4.
  • Mitad del Mundo Surf (Across from Camping Iguana). Formerly the most expensive hotel in town, only its bar is left after the 2016 earthquake. The bar has been repurposed as a dorm. Includes access to the minimalistic kitchen and most importantly the nice pool. No lockers. $5.
  • Posada de Daniel (Four blocks from the beach in front of the park). $6-8 per person. The bus from Pedernales goes past the door and stops one block away. The bus to San Vicente also stops one block away. There is a pool table, Internet cafe, cable TV, small swimming pool, laundry service and surfboard rental. Rooms are private cabañas with private bathrooms, comfortable beds and air conditioners.
  • Sundown Beach Hostel (About 2 km south of town). A great place to stay and relax outside the noise of main town. Nice beachfront rooms, some with balconies, for $5-8 per person. They also offer Spanish lessons.

You can use the form below to search for availability (Travellerspoint receives a commission for bookings made through the form)

Booking.com

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Keep Connected

Internet

Internet cafes can be found nearly everywhere in the major cities and in many of the smaller ones. Cost is from $1 to $2 per hour in the large cities, and the better places have high-speed access. In some cafes, restaurants, and hotels you can find free wifi access, most of them protected by passwords; in most cases, you just have to ask for the password.

Phone

See also International Telephone Calls

The international telephone code for Ecuador is 593. The general emergency number is 911, but there are special ones of police (101) and fire (102).

The centre of most towns, cities and villages have telephone 'shops', advertised in the street as 'cabinas'. Go in, ask for a free phone booth and call. There is usually a digital display giving the cost (per second) of your call, whether local, national or international. You can call the United States for about $0.10 per minute and Europe for a bit more. Avoid making a phone call through an operator; the cost for an international call can be $3 or more per minute. For calls within Ecuador, it is possible to use a telephone cabin.

Some mobile phone SIM cards of various networks have problems working in Ecuador - you can purchase a local network SIM (for an unlocked phone) for a few dollars in local mobile phone shops. The costs of calling are higher though at around $0.45 an hour.

Post

Correos del Ecuador is the national postal service of Ecuador. It's fairly reliable to send postcards and letters to other countries, though count on at least 5 days up to weeks for it to arrive. In general, postal services to North America are much faster than to other western countries. Prices start at around $1 (up to 20 grams), but rise steeply after that. You can get stamps at post offices or small shops/kiosks. Post offices generally are open from 8:00am to 6:00pm Monday to Friday and 8:00am to noon on Saturdays, although there are slight variations throughout the country. If you are going to send heavier post or post which has more value, it might be better to contact private courier companies like DHL, TNT, UPS or FedEx, which are generally about the same price and much faster!

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Accommodation in Canoa

We have a comprehensive list of accommodation in Canoa searchable right here on Travellerspoint.

Canoa Travel Helpers

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This is version 7. Last edited at 9:24 on Feb 21, 18 by Utrecht. 1 article links to this page.

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