Ayampe draws visitors from all parts of the globe for the peaceful, restorative energy of the town and the striking beauty of the nature that infuses every aspect of life here. While there are many activities to do in Ayampe, the vast majority involve a journey into the area’s wildlife; be it the sea, the shore, the river or the mountains.
Floating just offshore of the Ayampe beach is Los Ahorcados, the three-tiered islet that is iconic of this tranquil town. Journey by kayak out to the little landmark and spend the day snorkeling, observing the migratory birds, or simply get a different perspective of the lush, Ecuadorian coast. Another popular activity is diving down below the rocky walls of the island to get a better look at the wildlife teeming in this turquoise world. Various species of fish, eel, sea turtles and other marine life are abundant in these waters.
Manta & Whale Diving Season
For those willing to try Ayampe’s cooler, “Garua” season, special visitors pass by Los Ahorcados providing a very unique opportunity for divers. Giant manta rays, which are the world’s largest species of manta ray, gather in this part of the Pacific ocean from June until October to mate and feed. The Ecuadorian giant manta ray is the largest species of mantas in the world; they can be up to 7 meters (23 feet)! And this particular species of mantas loves to hang out right outside our hostel’s doorsteps. The enormous creatures are gentle and graceful in the water and swimming under their nearly thirty-foot wingspan is sure to be a humbling experience.
Giant manta rays are not Ayampe’s only massive guest during this time of year, as families of Humpback whales also migrate north from Antarctica. The whales are often seen breaching offshore and may pass by to say hello to lucky surfers or divers. To anyone intrigued by the ocean, this opportunity to swim alongside some of Earth’s largest animals should not be missed.
Book your trip
In addition to Los Ahorcados, there are various other dive sites near Ayampe each offering distinct coral and reef formations, underwater wildlife, and of course difficulty level. Dives can be arranged for beginners or for those with more advanced certifications. Prices generally range from $90-150, depending on the site and number of dives. Diving is possible any time of year, but if you are interested in seeing the Giant manta rays or Humpback whales, make sure to plan your visit to coincide with theirs (June-October). Book your beachfront stay with us, enjoy ocean views of the whales breaching right outside our doorsteps, enjoy free yoga classes included in your stay, and a once in a lifetime diving experience with giant manta rays (and whales)!
Guest Post & Authored by Mackenzie Perry (firstname.lastname@example.org) – yoga teacher, writer, english teacher, stayed at La Casa for 6 months