Montañita, despite being a small town with a laid-back vibe, offers a life-long tourist experience.
Here are some things that can make your visit here more fulfilling:
- Brush up on your Spanish
Due to its relaxed vibe and thriving traveler’s scene, plenty of backpackers choose Montañita as a base to hone their Spanish language skills. Several local schools offer intensive study packages at very reasonable prices.
- Kick back and relax
One of the great things about visiting a chilled-out beach town is there’s no rush to get out and frantically explore the sights each day. Instead, travelers in Montañita relish the chance to just hang out and do nothing, preferably on a hammock by the beach with a good book in hand. Yoga and massage are also popular local pastimes. Some travelers even stick around to train towards full certification. Who knows? You might even find yourself with an entirely new career path after a trip to Montañita!
- Catch some waves
Montañita is known for having some of the best breaks in South America, a fact that attracts scores of serious surfers year after year. It’s not all about the professionals hustling for monster waves though, as gentle swells and high-quality surf schools allow beginners to get on their feet and hang ten in no time. If surfing isn’t your thing though, take a trip north and inland towards the Agua Blanca community-run tourism project. Here, friendly local guides take tourists on a forested hiking trail as they passionately educate on the flora and fauna of the region. The trip finishes with a dip in a muddy sulfur bath that’s said to be highly beneficial for the skin.
- Spot some spectacular birdlife
Don’t have the money for a trip to the Galapagos? Not to worry, because Isla de la Plata is the next best thing. Blue-footed boobies abound on the island, as do a number of other curious species as well as a legion of tiny red crabs. Those who happen to visit between June and September should even be able to spot a humpback whale or two. South of town lies the modest beachfront village of Valdivia, mostly known for its Pre-Columbian history museum. The town also has an aquarium with a decent collection of blue-footed boobies, penguins, and turtles on display. Stop off at Libertador Bolivar on the way home for some cheap, high-quality art souvenirs.
- Sample some local cuisine
No visit here would be complete without a sampling some local ceviche. The ceviche shells are collected by divers and fishermen. The delicacy is then sold from the mobile yellow street carts mostly located on the main streets. If this doesn’t match your culinary desires, you can opt for a more sophisticated dining experience at an upmarket beachfront restaurant, from The Rosa Mistica and El Otro Lado to Guadalajara Tacos al Grill, Rastapan, Buena Onda Café, Montezuma Restro Bar, Cana Grill, La Casa Blanca Restobar and Bitter Sweet….the list is endless!