In Otavalo, go straight for the Ali Shungu hotel (www.alishungu.com). You will enjoy tastefully decorated rooms, delicious organic food and the kindness of the owners, Frank and Margaret. Not only is the hotel lovely, but its location is ideal to go shopping at the Saturday market too. At US$45 for a double room it is reasonably priced.
In Cuenca, I can recommend the hotel Crespo. Ask for a room overlooking the river. They are quite noisy but the view is very pretty. Their panoramic restaurant serves good breakfasts. At US$60 for the best rooms it ain't cheap but its location is more central than the luxury Oro Verde and the views are better.
In Banos, you can rent a cabin at the Monte Selva lodge and see the whole town at your feet. The accommodation is quite basic but feels authentic. At around US$30 per night it is quite expensive for Banos.
In Riobamba, the hotel Chimborazo Internacional offers spacious rooms and a pool for only US$19. You will need a taxi to go to the city center though as it is not located centrally. The hotel is quite peaceful and built on top of a small hill providing good views of the city.
In Montanita, besides several hostals the hotel Baja Montanita offer the highest standard of accommodation in the village (a mere 3 stars by international standards but a palace compared to the houses were the local population lives). Our room was infested with crickets every single night but the beach view is nice. The swimming pool is rather small and shallow with a funny green colour. If you don't mind less amenities, I would suggest trying out some of the nearby hostals. However, the location is good with direct access to the beach and excellent waves for surfing.
In Quito, the apart-hotel Antinea offers nice apartments for around US$60 per night. It is located in a quiet street in the middle of the 'backpackers district'. The staff is extremely helpful.
In Quito, I stayed in Auberge-inn. It is a medium class hotel, very clean, with friendly people. The great thing is to be able to reserve by email in such a medium budget hotel. Many people from Switzerland, Germany and France stay there. Just a little note : you cannot pay with credit card.
For prices : go to their Web SIte
In the amazone-area the Yacuma Lodge is a very nice place to stay. There is no electricity but candle-light will help you when it is getting dark!
In Quito a very good place to stay is Hostal Fuente de Piedra, near the park El Ejido.
While staying in Quito, we stayed at Alston Inn Hotel. It is a great place in the heart of the new town. tele: (593 2) 229-955. We had a very comfortable room which included 3 beds, hot showers, carpeted floors all for only US $21.43. Yes I know we could have gotten a cheaper room and thought about it but I wanted to put Lisa up in a nice room since this was her nice vacation.
In Guayaquil I stayed at the mission group's house in Duran, just across the river from Guay. Duran is one of the poorest areas of the country so I always felt really bad carrying around my camera on the bus. It was sad to know that most of the men there make US $150 a month while at home I can make that in a night while waiting tables.
Hotel Oro Verde in Machala ***** (a Swisshotel chain member)
All the weekends a double room, breakfast buffet for 2 adults and 2 children under 12 years (the children without breakfast) for only US$ 45 + taxes. Room in the photo.
All the facilities expect for a 5 stars hotel: Cable TV, carpeted rooms, etc.
Eight rooms located in the main building, all with private baths, can be reserved in advance. Doubles and triples are $7 per person, larger suites with balcony and ocean view are $16, family rooms for 4-5 people are $22. Four rooms outside the main building sharing a common bath are $5 per person, and are taken on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Rustic decor. Open-air restaurant and bar service. All rooms in the Hotel Bambu are of mixed bamboo-plaster construction, combining the tropical ambiance of the former with the coolness and sound-proofing of the latter.
Hosteria Canoa in Canoa (Manabi)
Great and nice colored rooms (bungalows available for 4 to more people) with big beds and a clean and complete bathroom. Tiny sauna next to a perfect swimming pool with jacuzzi incluided. A great two floor bar and restaurant building... a perfect place to rest.
Hostal Chonderleg (***) in Cuenca
Princes in 2001:
Single: US$ 16
Double: US$ 23
Suite : US$ 30
Continental Breakfast included
Visa, Mastercard and Diners credit cards are accepted.
An attractive hotel in a refurbished older building with a nice patio and a decent restaurant. Ask for a suite is most expensive but is a good deal, for a two floor room with a nice bathroom (and plenty of HOT water), TV, telephone, radio and a good view of the catedral over ceilings around.
volunteers pay $US55 for the week which includes meals
tourists pay US$8 a day + the cost of meals
You can stay at Aldea as a tourist, or volunteer. The bamboo houses are tucked into the jungle, and you experience the most peaceful sleep. The bamboo huts are quite primative, but comfortable. There are no flush toilets or showers, but in such a beautiful place, you really don't mind. You can bathe in the nearby river which is always warm. Aldea serves mostly vegetarian food which was delicious.
10$ p.p/night in cabanas, private bathroom, mosquito nets over the beds, veranda with hamaka. (Try to bargain)
8$ p.p/night in hostaria.
Lovely cabanas on the beach. Very nice personel and personal attention. Great venue for a few days 'in Paradise'. Setting is amazing, good kitchen.
3$ p/p with shared bathrooms (very clean) or 5$ p/p with private bathroom
Chill out place. Rooms all situated around cafe/courtyard where fine music (from Pink Floyd to Moby and further)is played. Music stops around 11 pm, so sleeping is no problem. Great food and drinks, happy hour 5-7 pm: cocktails only 0.60$. Lovely choise of breakfasts for 1$.
5$ p.p./night, American breakfast included.
Outstandingly friendly owners: Javier & Maria
Very clean, safe area, breakfast included
Intimate atmosphere, created by the owners who spend a lot of their time talking to their guests, giving them al kinds of Ecuador information and (free) Spanish lessons at the same time!
Free pick-up from the airport or bus station upon arrival in Quito.
Ecuador has very good hotels at a reasonable prices. In the city of Quito you can find from 5 stars hotel to 3 stars hotels. Even the 3 stars are safe, clean and sometimes well located within the city.
The hotel that I would recomend the most is HOTEL ALAMEDA REAL, just on Amazonas street, right on the heart of downtown.
The old Haciendas, old country side farm housing, with horse
back riding, hikking,etc.
The Cusin Hacienda, near San Pablo Lake, beautifull scenery, good service.
The Kapawi Lodge in The Amazon Rain Forest, very nice, mysterious, exciting.
Of all the places I've stayed during my travels in Ecuador, the one that stands out in my memory as the most enjoyable was spending a weekend in a cabin overlooking the north end of the beach in Súa. If I remember correctly, we paid about $4 per person per night for a large cabin with three beds.
I understand that there's been quite a bit of tourist development in Súa in the past seven years, but when we were there in 1998 it was a seemingly forgotten little fishing village. Maybe it's different now, but at that time Súa didn't see a whole lot of tourists, so it was incredibly relaxing. We often had the entire beach to ourselves, and we even managed to convince the owners of a tiny little fishing boat (so small that one fellow was chopping wood to make some makeshift seats while we negotiated our trip with another fellow) to take us out on the ocean for trip down the coast and back – two hours that included gliding by a beautiful resort supposedly built by Colombian drug lords and visiting the spot where (local legend has it) there's a monster fish so huge that it eats whales!
I cannot imagine a more relaxing place. The typical day spent in Súa consisted of the following: wake up, swim in the Pacific, lie on beach, eat lunch, lie on the beach, swim in the Pacific, eat dinner, have a few drinks at the cantina, fall asleep on hammock on the beach. It was on the beach in Súa where my friend John and I reached the fifth level of "tranquilo."
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