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Montecristi: City with Ancestral Culture – 2024 Travel Guide

There is a large number of suggestions online when it comes to the cities you should visit but have you heard of a place where mysticism and fascination surround the environment.? You have surely heard of Ecuador, the country of the four worlds, where you can find the biodiversity of unlimited flora and fauna, go from the heat of the coast to a breathtaking view from a snow-covered volcano, and then end in the mystery of a jungle thick in the amazons. Also, how to forget, the enchanted islands of the Galapagos.

You can find all this in a territory as small as Ecuador, located in the northwestern part of South America. In this blog, I will detail a little-known and little-known place in this beautiful country. I’m going to tell you about the city of Montecristi, but don’t understand a “city” as a large city full of highways and buildings, of course not. Montecristi is a canton, belonging to Manabí – Ecuador. Located on the coast, bathed by the waters of the Pacific Ocean, where its center is located on the slopes of a hill with a beautiful view of the sea.

History tells that the city of Montecristi was formed during the first years of the Spanish conquest, viability between the years of 1536 and 1537, with inhabitants of the city of Manta who left their town fleeing from the pirate attacks that existed at that time, forming a settlement where tradition and culture still prevail to this day.

This canton has in its territory a diversity of climate that makes you fall in love, you can feel the heat of its beaches even in a natural state, as well as the cold breeze of its hill with mist most of the year. Meet five tourist sites that will make you fall in love with this place and it will surely become your next destination to go out and discover.

3 Places to Visit in Montecristi

The Isla De La Plata and its Charm in the Middle of the Sea

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On a small uninhabitable island of Montecristi. It is part of the Machalilla National Park. It was discovered at the time of the conquest where they found silver and gold jewelry used by the natives on this island, hence the name Isla de la Plata. You can visit this place by boat, starting from the city of Puerto López 40km away by boat.

This island is a small imitation of the Galapagos Islands, there is a diversity of animal species. Like several species of gannet, including the blue-footed gannet (Sula nebouxii), red-legged gannet (Sula sula), and the Nazca gannet (Sula granti). You will find different birds, one of those species is called frigates and you can also observe sea lions (Otaria flavescens). This island allows you to see dolphins, such as the tropical spotted dolphin (Stenella attenuata) and they can also be found in the waters near the island in whale season you can see them jump on the waves of the sea. In the place, the visits are guided through trails where each place on the island and its flora, fauna, and history are explained in detail. A place to discover in harmony with nature.

Ciudad Alfaro Civic Center

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Located on the slopes of Montecristi hill, it has a beautiful natural view. This emblematic construction, which was the seat of the Constituent Assembly in 2008, has a viewpoint where you can see Manta, Jaramijó, and the waters of the Pacific Ocean. This site contributes to the recovery of culture and national memory with an emphasis on the Liberal

Revolution and the ancestral peoples of the Litoral. It is a museum that has two modes: guided and self-guided. This place is one of the places that attract the most visitors, especially between June and August of each year.

Here we talk about the history of the aboriginal peoples and their way of life, the history of a culture that still lives in this place, and especially about the first liberal president of Ecuador. The ‘Viejo Luchador’, which relives the struggle of the alfaristas and the construction of the emblematic railway, a symbol of union between the coast and the Ecuadorian mountains. There is a section in this museum where you can buy crafts that will surely surprise you with the beauty that you will find.

Cradle of the Emblematic Straw Hats (Panama Hat)

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Surely you will know these hats, famous in the world and that surely in some famous you will have seen it. But did you know that the Panama Hat is Ecuadorian? Yes, in 2012 it was recognized as Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. This is the identity of Montecristi. A fine hat is recognized worldwide for being made entirely by hand with details that impress locals and strangers. If you visit Montecristi you will be able to observe many shops with artisans weaving a fine hat live, lying on a wooden log, which will surely delight your eyes because of how fascinating it is. Something so representative of this place. You can chat with them, learn about their history, culture, and tradition.

The fiber known as toquilla palm (Carludovica palmata), which is used for weaving, makes the hat even and symmetrical. A process that is born from the forest, goes through the skilled hands of prepared artisans and ends in your hands with a lot of love and effort. This hat is for sale in several shops in Montecristi. Many times we can find it in craft fairs in other cities, but nothing like the Montecristi hat, its fine qualities are unique. It is worth mentioning that to knit a hat it can take between 3 to 6 months.

All these places are a magical encounter with nature, history, and tradition. Discovering it is a great adventure. In addition to the view of impressive places, you should know that another characteristic of this place is its gastronomy. Here you can taste dishes with a sea flavor since seafood is abundant where you can enjoy the famous ceviche, breaded fish, corviches, empanadas, and sweets that will surely leave you amazed.

Come discover Ecuador and its magical places. You will enter to live nature and live with it in harmony and who knows, maybe you will return with a fine hat. For more information about Panama hats, visit EcuadorianHands

About Danoline Samson

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