Trip idea – Why to choose this trip?
Three beautiful sandy beaches, Pacific ocean and a nice hike with a few “miradors” (viewpoints) – this is our trip idea if you stay in Ecuadorian Puerto Lopez. What are the main advantages of this one-day excursion? Firstly, in this part of Ecuador, you can enjoy the pleasant tropical weather with monthly average temperatures that vary from 24 to 26 degrees. Secondly, it is a low-budget trip. You would have to pay only around $1 per person for the bus tickets (yes, a one-way ticket costs just $0.5). There are also no entrance fees.
This trip idea is a perfect solution if you cannot decide whether you want to spend your holidays actively or lazy. Another reason to take this trip is that especially Playa de Los Frailes is just stunning. Many people claim that it is one of the most beautiful beaches in the whole country. You can’t miss it!
3 beaches near Puerto Lopez – what exactly you will see
During this trip, you have an opportunity to visit three different beaches – Playa Prieta, Playa la Tortugita and, the most famous one, Playa de Los Frailes. We used Google Maps to prepare for you a preview of the locations.
1. The beach “Playa Prieta”
Playa Prieta is the smallest of the three beaches that you will visit. The sand here is quite dark, and you may have a chance to observe crabs. It should take you around 30-40 minutes from the bus to get to Playa Prieta. On this little beach, there are no shops, no bathrooms or changing rooms. Although no sign forbids to swim, you will also not find any designated place for swimmers, and you can’t count on help from a life saver. That’s why we don’t recommend to swim here. Also, don’t forget to take water with you as an only (eventual) chance to buy a bottle will be once you get to Playa de Los Frailes.
2. The beach “Playa la Tortuguita”
As you can see on the attached map, according to Google preview the whole beach is called “Playa la Tortuga”, however, once you arrive at this lovely location you should spot a sign which tells that the beach is named “Playa la Tortuguita”. It would take you around 10-15 minutes from Playa Prieta to get there. This beach is longer than a previous one, and the sand is not so dark. However, it is also not so white like on the Playa de Los Frailes. Similarly, there are no shops and no bathrooms.
The beach “Playa de Los Frailes”
The most attractive beach is the icing on the cake. Playa de Los Frailes is wide, long and famous for its soft white sand. If you have few dollars in a pocket, you can consider renting a sunshade. It should take you another 10-15 minutes to get there from Playa La Tortuguita. It is also the most touristic place – especially on weekends you can expect many other visitors. There is also a bathroom, changing room and a little shop with souvenirs, ice-creams and beverages. Although a life saver was not present on this beach as well, many people were swimming. Playa de Los Frailes is a paradise!
When to go?
On weekends you can expect many people to enjoy the sunlight on these Ecuadorian beaches. For this reason, if you don’t like the crowd, maybe decide to take this trip on weekdays. Also, the park closes at 4:30 pm, therefore, it ‘s good to wake up early in the morning, so you will have enough time to visit all three beaches. Finally, it is a bit difficult to recommend the best time to visit Puerto Lopez – you can enjoy pleasant temperatures during all seasons. However, December, January and February will be the hottest whereas the coldest are June and July.
Trip idea – how to get there from Puerto Lopez?
It’s not difficult to get to Playa de Los Frailes, even if you don’t speak Spanish well. Just follow four steps provided below.
- In Puerto Lopez, go to the bus station on foot (it takes around 20-30 minutes) or alternatively, catch a tuk-tuk. Tuk-tuk option would cost around $1.
- Take a bus from the town to… Well, just ask the driver about “Playa Los Frailes”. 🙂 It will take around to 10-15 minutes to reach the right bus stop.
- Next to the bus stop, cross the road and there will be a watch-house. You have to register in order to pass. A kind of park ranger will ask you for a name, surname and the country you come from. But you will not pay for anything.
- Then, you can, either, go directly to Playa de Los Frailes on foot or by tuk-tuk. Also, you may turn right and hike through the forest. When choosing this way, before reaching Playa de Los Frailes, you will visit also Playa Prieta and Playa La Tortuguita.
Trip idea – Summary & Recommendations
We hope that you like our trip idea to visit three beaches near Puerto Lopez. As, because of the tuk-tuks, this town is a bit noisy, taking this excursion will allow you to relax while being surrounded by nature. Why visit Puerto Lopez at all? Well, besides this one-day attraction, you can also, for instance, learn here Spanish in a very friendly Puerto Lopez Spanish School. The school offers both, individual and group courses. If you want to know more about Puerto Lopez itself, then, read our short guide which presents what to see in what to do in the town area.