Ecuador’s beachfront is absolutely magnificent, offering miles of rugged cliffs, beautiful sandy beaches, sleepy fishing villages, open beach lots, and thriving metropolitan areas. One would think that towns located at sea level on the equator would be unbearably hot, but that’s actually not the case in Ecuador. For much of the year, the Humboldt Current coming up from the Antarctic keeps the temperatures in the 70s and 80s.
A large portion of the beachfront property in Ecuador is undeveloped, which is great if you own a horse, or want to speed from town to town along the beach in your Jeep at low tide. If you’re looking for a highly developed oceanview resort area, however, your options are limited.
To give you an idea of Ecuador beachfront real estate prices, here are some beachfront opportunities we recently came across:
Beachfront Property in Esmeraldas: The “Green Province”
Starting in the north, just 30 minutes from the Esmeraldas airport, the town of Atacames is a popular destination for Ecuadorian tourists and international travelers alike. Atacames is in the province of Esmeraldas–known as the “Green Province”–a province that represents a pocket of Afro-Caribbean culture on the north coast. Its visitors enjoy wide, fine-sand beaches and warm water.
Just south of Atacames are the towns of Súa (SOO-ah) and Same (SAH-meh). Both are slightly quieter and tamer than Atacames, but still sport nice beaches and quiet lagoons. In Atacames, a three-bedroom single story home in a small development is listed at $84,000. Use of the community pool and private parking are included.
Beachfront Property in Bahía de Caráquez
Reminiscent of a Greek town on the Aegean, Bahía de Caráquez is a beautiful city of whitewash-and-tile roofs on the estuary of the Chone River. It is popular with wealthy Ecuadorians, who have their vacation homes here. Bahía de Caráquez was hit by an earthquake a few years ago and, although few of the buildings were severely damaged, many Ecuadorians abandoned the city in fear of another quake, making beachfront property here a real value. One thing we like about Bahía is the fact that you could live here full time; not only does it have the nice beaches and waterfront restaurants that you’d expect from a beach resort, but it also has the administrative services and cultural venues you’d expect from a city.
From Bahía, a drive over the bridge or a water taxi ride takes you across the estuary to the beachfront resort town of San Vicente, where beautiful beaches stretch for miles. Continuing up the coast, you’ll see Ecuador’s finest beaches, and the picturesque little village Canoa. The large waterfront homes along this stretch start at a negotiable $100,000, and the beachfront condos for as little as $60,000.
Beachfront Property in Montañita
Probably the premier surfer destination in Ecuador, Montañita is also popular with those looking for fun and sun. Yes, you guessed it, Montañita appeals to the younger backpacking crowd, and young people from around the world flock there to surf, play on the beautiful beaches, and hang out in the many small bars and restaurants.
We found a property known as “the Guest House,” which is located on the main drag with stunning views of both the beach and the river valley. It’s located right in the heart of Montañita, within minutes of the open markets, major restaurants, bars, clubs, Internet cafés, and shops. The house has four bedrooms, four full bathrooms, and a huge 96 feet of beach frontage. The asking price is $148,000 and it even comes with a café, bar, and satellite TV.
Beachfront Property in Salinas
Along Ecuador’s coast, you’ll find a few pockets of good old Miami-style beachfront development–highrise condos, luxury hotels, nice restaurants, and clubs along long sandy beaches. Salinas, on the southern coast close to Guayaquil, is the country’s most developed. We saw nice, 1,000-square-foot apartments in the town center–only about three blocks from the beach–starting at around $5,000. Older and smaller ones are even cheaper.
Note: Any real estate opportunity presented here is listed in order to provide you with a snapshot of what to expect, and to help you compare one city or region with another. In most cases, you’ll find that the properties mentioned are no longer available when you visit the country.
*Prices as of 2015