10 Must See Things in Guayaquil Ecuador

Guayaquil is a city in Ecuador, one of the most fascinating countries in Latin America, with a great variety of landscapes, from the Andes to the ocean. Guayaquil is called the Pearl of the Pacific and is located within a bay connected to the ocean by a large channel or arm of the sea, Estero Salado.It is the most populous and also the most fashionable city in Ecuador, modern and full of vibrant energy but with a strong contrast to the suburbs. Let's start together to discover the 10 things to see absolutely in Guayaquil, Ecuador.


  1. Malecon 2000
  2. Parque Historico de Guayaquil
  3. Santay Island
  4. Guayaquil Lighthouse
  5. Santa Ana Hill
  6. Parque Seminario (or de las Iguanas)
  7. Guayaquil Metropolitan Cathedral
  8. Hemiciclo of the Rotunda
  9. Reloj de la Torre Morisca
  10. Parque Lineal de l'Estero Salado
  11. Plan your stay in Guayaquil: info on flights, hotels and tours
  12. User questions and comments

1 - Malecon 2000

The area overlooking the Guayas River, facing the Isla Santay, is called Malecon 2000 and is a large area completely refurbished, recovered and enhanced to give impetus to tourism and the social life of the city. Malecon is one long, colorful promenade that offers restaurants, shops, spaces for the arts, amphitheaters, underground parking lots and many other services. The presence of private surveillance is of great importance, allowing you to enjoy the walk in absolute tranquility, observing the course of the river and the shop windows. In fact, it is not recommended to go outside this neighborhood at night, so take it as a reference point for your evenings.

  • on the riverside, it can be reached by metro T1, Jardines de Malecon stop, or by bus lines C1 or C2 stop Biblioteca Municipal, Malecon is a few steps away - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • free

2 - Parque Historico de Guayaquil

This park is a real pride of the city of Guayaquil. Built in 1997 by Banco Central del Ecuador, presents various thematic areas: there is the area of ​​life in nature, with the reproduction of the environment of over 50 species of animals typical of Ecuador. It is not a zoo, because the animals are free and, for their safety and tranquility, there is a small elevated railway that allows visitors to pass through and some scheduled stops to get to know the animals more closely. Particularly famous are the iguanas, a real attraction. Inside the park there is also the part dedicated to urban architecture, with the reconstruction of Guayaquil during the first decades of the twentieth century, its golden age. On the weekend there are also theatrical performances dedicated to the life of that time. Finally, the area dedicated to the traditions of the countryside around Guayaquil. A nice way to spend a day and get to know the city and its history.

  • the park is located in the Samborondon district, public transport does not arrive there but you can take a taxi - Get directions
  • open from Wednesday to Sunday from 09:00 to 16:30
  • free

3 - Isla Santay

Santay Island it is an unspoiled island that is located a few steps from the city center, within the great stretch of sea that connects Guayaquil to the Pacific. The extraordinary feature of the island is that despite being a few meters away from the metropolis as the crow flies, it has not known urban development, remaining a green oasis within the city and showing visitors today what Guayaquil was like 500 years ago. The island is a protected area full of animals, including parrots, giant butterflies and even reptiles, notably there is a channel within the island where caimans live. It is connected to the mainland by a pedestrian bridge, which can also be traveled by bicycle, and the system of bridges runs throughout the island so that the walk is in absolute safety.

  • take the T1 metro line to the Hospital Leon Becerra stop. The Isla Santay bridge is 1km southbound and then left on Calle El Oro, it takes about half an hour to walk along it - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • free. You can rent a bike for $ 4,00 (€ 3,55) or get on a boat for $ 1,50 (€ 1,33)

4 - Guayaquil Lighthouse

Guayaquil's colorful lighthouse sits atop a hill in the city center and offers exceptional views of the bay and the city skyline. The building is painted in white and blue stripes and is located in a small square with a panoramic terrace and a small church. To get to the top it is necessary to face a climb of 444 steps, but, once you arrive, the wind mitigates the tiredness and the sight repays any effort. The lighthouse, inside the terrace, is a small building and is freely accessible.

  • reach the Atrazana stop by metro T1 and from there walk up the steps - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • free

5 - Cerro Santa Ana

Once you get to the top of the hill to visit the lighthouse, you cannot fail to visit the whole neighborhood of Cerro Santa Ana, below. Along the staircase you will find access to small streets, very characteristic and covered with pebbles, which run through the Cerro and host hundreds of colorful buildings that are very visible from all over the city, some buildings are made of wood and date back to the colonial era: truly suggestive. Lose yourself in the small streets of the neighborhood, they are full of typical cafes and craft shops. Don't worry for your safety: here too the guards are practically everywhere because the neighborhood, until recently, was a disreputable place despite its beauty.

  • reach the T1 Atrazana or Las Penas metro stops and then walk up - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • free
  • Guayaquil overview

6 - Parque Seminario (or de las Iguanas)

This park is located right in front of the Guayaquil Cathedral and is worth a visit for its particularity: it is full of very beautiful statues, including those dedicated to Simon Bolivar on horseback and Ana Villamil, famous local pianist, but above all is inhabited by many iguanas, nice animals and not at all aggressive. Usually they are approached with a salad leaf, even if it would be better not to feed them, for their protection it is necessary that they get it. It can also be visited in the evening, it is well lit and becomes very charming.

  • you can reach it with the T1 line and get off at the Municipal Library, it is located a few steps from the Malecon - Get directions
  • always open
  • free

7 - Metropolitan Cathedral of Guayaquil

The Metropolitan Cathedral, dedicated to St. Peter, is located in front of the iguanas park. It is a building that rises upwards, white and in a neo-Gothic style, with two spiers and a beautiful central rose window on the facade. The cathedral has a very sober and elegant appearance, with marble and mosaics inside. It is huge and screens are installed along the aisles from which to follow the celebrations. It was rebuilt in the 1692th century to replace the previous cathedral destroyed by a fire in . In 1695 the building was rebuilt and remained unchanged for about 300 years until this recent renovation. Beware of the beggars who crowd its surroundings.

  • you can reach it with the T1 line and get off at the Municipal Library, it is located a few steps from the Malecon - Get directions
  • open during the day and during celebrations
  • free

8 - Hemiciclo de la Rotonda

The Hemiciclo de la Rotonda is a monumental place located in the Malecon district and intends to celebrate the independence and history of all of South America. The two heroes represented here, Simon Bolivar and Jose de San Martin met here in Guayaquil and their two statues, at this point, celebrate their ideological encounter. The colonnade surrounds the two figures and is truly imposing, with very high white columns, makes a half bend ideally embracing the two South American heroes. The monument creates a nice amplifier effect: if you lean on the far left or right column and speak in a low voice, you will be heard perfectly on the other side of the monument.

  • it is located on the corner of Malecon 2000 promenade, so you can take the T1 line to Biblioteca Municipal - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • free

9 - Reloj de la Torre Morisca

This beautiful tower is always located on the Malecon promenade and once you get to the top, gives you a breathtaking view of the Guayas River and the whole city. It is a symbol of Guayaquil and a pride for its population, it was built in 1930 by the engineer Ramon and decorated by Emilio Soro. The tower houses a mechanical clock and, visiting it inside, it is possible to observe it down to the smallest details of the gears: very interesting. The tower is 23 meters high in yellow and white, decorated with beautiful mosaics and inlays that give it an Arabian look. The clock is now in perfect working order, but has stood still for many years, so that the citizens of Guayaquil used to say that the clock kept the correct time twice a day.

  • at Malecon, take line T1 to Biblioteca Municipal, convenient to all other attractions - Get Directions
  • open every day from 08: 00 to 12: 00
  • free

10 - Parque Lineal de l'Estero Salado

This park is located along the inner arm of Guayaquil, on the course that runs parallel to the Guayas River and also ends in the waters of the Ocean. The city it hosts many green spaces, thanks also to its waters, this park in particular it is very popular with families because children can play and run in peace as well as use the rides. In the evening it lights up with plays of lights, fountains with colored beams, luminous billboards, very nice to see. All around clubs, shops, and the waterway: a very animated area of ​​Guayaquil life. On the other bank of the river, accessible via a bridge, there are other parks and the university area.

  • take the T3 line and get off at the Cidadela Ferroviaria, from here walk along the river - Get directions
  • always accessible
  • free

Plan your stay in Guayaquil: info on flights, hotels and tours

Guayaquil is Ecuador's most populous city and offers numerous attractions and many activities and services for tourists, however it is preferable not to leave the central area, also manned by surveillance and perfectly covered by the metro and bus lines, where the main places to visit are gathered. Indeed, the city has a high crime rate, therefore, if you have to leave the limits of the center, it is advisable to take a taxi.

  • starting from € 1.000,00 -
  • Hotel and b & b starting from € 55,00 per room -
  • Guayaquil City Tour Guayaquil: 3-Hour Shuttle Guayaquil City Tour to Montañita Beach
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