Beach trip to Mompiche

Emilia Quilotoa


Over the last holidays in November we packed our suitcases and headed to the coast of Ecuador. To be more precisely, to the small fishing village of Mompiche in the province of Esmeraldas. The place is more than small – in fact, it consists of only two streets and a small beach. Nevertheless, there is a lot to see and do there and, above all, you can enjoy a nice time on the beach!

Breakfast in Pedernales and arrival in Mompiche

After leaving Quito (extra early at 4:30am), we arrived after about 5 hours of driving in the coastal town of Pedernales, where we had breakfast in a restaurant on the beach. We had the typical dish Tigrillo, which consists of a stirred banana with cheese, egg and if you like also pork. On top there was a fried egg and coffee or juice.


After the delicious breakfast and with much warmer temperatures than in the Sierra, we continued in direction of Mompiche. 1.5 hours later we were finally there: After checking into our beautiful hostel we went straight to the beach. Everyone was happy to finally be at the sea, but we quickly realised that the beach of Mompiche would not be our absolute favourite because of the many dogs and boats.

Later we finally had the chance to eat our first mariscos (seafood): I had Ceviche de Camaron, a kind of cold soup with prawns, which I had been looking forward to since my arrival in Ecuador.

Ceviche con arroz

In the evening we went out dancing in a hostel across the street, which was a perfect way to round off our first day on the coast.

A day on the beautiful island of Portete

After having breakfast we made our way to the island of Portete. An excursion that was recommended to us beforehand, so we were really looking forward to the beach there. It is about 15 minutes by car to the dock. From there, a small boat takes you to the island for 50 cents per person, which only takes about 5 minutes. 

Arriving on the beautiful island, our expectations were completely exceeded! The white sand, the palm trees and the crystal clear water reminded us of a typical Caribbean beach. In addition, the sun was shining particularly nice for us that day. The beach offers a great opportunity to take a walk and sunbathe, which we did immediately. In the afternoon we enjoyed seafood and lemonade at a beach bar. 

Muisne Island and Playa Negra - the black beach

The next morning we went on a trip to Muisne Island, which is about an hour away from Mompiche. To get to the island, we had to cross a bridge. Parking in front of the beach costs USD 2 for the whole day. The beach is primarily popular with the locals, so no other tourists were there. As it was unfortunately very cloudy, we did not stay there for long and after an hour we made our way back to Mompiche.

From our hostel we went for a walk in the late afternoon. We walked from the beach of Mompiche along the road and then along a small path back towards the beach, to the so-called Playa Negra – translated black beach, as the sand there is actually almost black. The sand glitters uniquely in the sun and we were lucky enough to see a breathtaking sunset – my personal highlight of the trip!

Portete and return to Quito

On our last day on the coast we went to Portete again, but the weather was not as good as last time, so we returned earlier. Since you can take a nice walk along the beach, we spent the time there again. Also on our last evening, we ate delicious seafood.  Typical for the coast of Ecuador are Ceviche (made of different seafood like shrimps, fish or mussels), Cangrejo (crab) and Concha (mussels). All dishes are usually served with rice and patacones (fried bananas) and only cost around 6 USD. For such a good price, the food is really delicious and keeps you very well satisfied.

The next morning we had to drive back to Quito, but we didn’t miss the chance to have Tigrillo for breakfast one last time. Unfortunately, this was the end of our beautiful 5-day trip to Esmeraldas.


I would definitely recommend Mompiche as it is a quiet and beautiful place to relax and enjoy your holiday!

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