Manta and Montecristi Highlights
Available all year
Discover the richness of culture of Manta and Montecristi.
Observe the collection of ceramics of the Manteno-Huancavila pre historic culture.
Visit traditional artisan workshops.
Take the opportunity to shop in a genuine Panama Hut.
Explore the rich history, culture and people of Manta and Montecristi during this scenic, half-day sightseeing excursion.
Depart the pier for a short drive around Manta, passing the seaside promenade and fish market. At the archaeological museum, see a small but excellent collection of ceramics of the Manteño-Huancavilca culture that flourished here between 800 and 1550 A.D. Other local art expositions can also be found on display.
The tour continues to Montecristi, home of the Panama Hat. Genuine Panama hats, despite their name, hail from Ecuador. During the Spanish American War, in 1898, the U.S. government bought some 50,000 of these hats for the troops from merchants in Panama. Add to that the hat's popularity with the crews that constructed the Panama Canal in the early twentieth century and it's no surprise that the name “Panama” stuck despite their true origins in Ecuador.
On arrival in Montecristi, a colonial town founded in 1628, we have the opportunity to visit the town’s main square, home to an impressive statue of a former Ecuadorian president born here. This beautiful little town is indeed a highlight of the tour, and still retains the atmosphere and faded elegance of its Spanish heritage. We'll stop by a picturesque wooden building that once served as the first girls' school in Ecuador. With its old walls and wonderful well-worn wooden floors, this rustic building now holds a cornucopia of artisan stalls selling straw baskets, jewellery, colourful handicrafts and Panama hats. Montecristi's central square and many narrow streets provide additional local shopping opportunities.
Return to the quayside.
Remarks/requirements: Lightweight clothing which includes long pants and long sleeved shirts, sunblock, hats, insect repellent (this is a must), comfortable walking shoes, camera.
Walking information: 550 mts with even walking terrain.
Wheelchair accessible: No.
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