The highlights of this warm, tropical region are the metropolitan
city of Guayaquil, the resort town of Salinas and the beaches along
the "Route of the Sun."
Nestled on the right bank of the Guayas River in Ecuador's litoral
is the port city of Guayaquil. Guayaquil is the main port of the country
and the economic capital of Ecuador. Among the cultural attractions
here are the traditional neighborhood of Las Peñas perched
on the slopes of the Santa Ana hill; the Metropolitan Cathedral; the
Seminary Park where peaceful iguanas live; the Civic Center with its
modern auditorium; the General Cemetery with sculptures of Italian
marble; the Clock Tower and the new Malecón (Boardwalk) 2000,
an enormous riverfront project that houses stores, galleries, restaurants,
The capital of the province of Los Rios is surrounded by the San Pablo and Caracol rivers which form the Babahoyo river which in turn flows into the Guayas river. In order to observe and enjoy the agricultural richness of the region, you must pass over the waters of the Babahoyo. One of the details that astounds visitors is that on this river, there are floating houses. To the right is found the Casa de Olmedo where the writer wrote the verses of the well known Song to Bolivar. Other attractions in the city are the 24 th of May park, surrounded by beautiful gardens and the façade of the Cathedral which has a giant mural of the Virgin Mary done as a mosaic. In another area is Vinces, known as "Little Paris". It is characterized by its ancient buildings, constructed in wood, that belonged to the rich cacao plantation owners of yesteryear.
Zaruma is one of the oldest cities in Ecuador, founded with the name of Villa Real de Minas del Cerro Rico de San Antonio de Zaruma. With its colonial architecture, it is a future candidate for a Cultural Heritage of Humanity site.
The zaruman buildings synthesize a richness of decorative elements and a wonderful mixture of traditional materials and techniques. The building fronts are covered in wood, such as supports and balconies with decorated balustrades. One of the most coveted products is coffee that is produced here in a constant spring climate that hovers around 17 degrees Celsius. But what has made this place famous are the multiple gold mines. Some seven kilometers from Zaruma and 80 km from Machala is Portovelo, known for having the oldest gold mines in the country; it also has wooden buildings dating from the beginning of the last century.