Guayaquil City Guide
OVERVIEW: Ah, beautiful Guayaquil. Only kidding. It's actually pretty terrible... The largest city in Ecuador and the main business and commerce hub.
WEATHER: Hot and humid (20-31 °C). Rainy season January-April
SAFETY: Guayaquil is a bit dangerous. The malecon is fine during the day, but I wouldn't advise venturing into the outskirts of the city, or really anywhere that you aren't familiar with or haven't researched. Not as many tourists as Quito or Cuenca so you'll stand out to criminals as a potential target.
MUST DO: Malecon. A very nice part of an otherwise ugly metropolis. Good for a stroll or some shopping.
RENT AN APARTMENT IN GUAYAQUIL: $600.00. You want to make sure you're in a good area close to the centre if you want to be able to stomach living in Guayaquil.
HOSTEL DORM BED/NIGHT $12.00
NIGHTLIFE IN GUAYAQUIL: 6.5/10
Guayaquil is the bar/nightlife capital of Ecuador. But that accolade is more a default of it's size and population than anything else. Most of the action goes on in the Zona Rosa. It's heavily patrolled so you shouldn't have to worry too much about security. Zona Rosa offers the ability to barhop, but I wouldn't suggest it unless you don't mind paying multiple cover charges. But go wherever the wind takes you.
I recommend: Fridda. Located in centro as opposed to Zona Rosa, but if you're staying close to the centre, this is your best choice. And, most importantly, the girls are actually hot, which seems to be rare for Ecuador, so enjoy. But please, don't look like too much of a backpacker if you come here. Take a shower, dress nice, comb your hair and the girls will respond positively.
BOTTLE OF BEER: $2.50
CHANCE OF HOOKING-UP IN GUAYAQUIL: 6.75/10
A bit better chance than in Quito, perhaps because it's a bigger city. Make sure you go out to places that are close to where you're staying. Girls in Guayaquil go out in big groups, usually mixed with guys. You are unlikely to see a group of two or three girls by themselves. It would be really good to know Spanish here; although a surprising number of girls know English, a few phrases in their native tongue will soften them up like butter in Baghdad.
***ONLINE DATING: Latin American Cupid allows you to talk with girls and set up dates before you arrive in the country. For this reason, I recommend it.
ARE GIRLS HOT IN GUAYAQUIL?: 6/10.
Only good at the clubs. You will see next to nothing of interest in Guayaquil during the day, unless perhaps you're in a fancy restaurant with a patio during lunchtime. I saw one.
If you want to meet women in Ecuador, you will need to speak some Spanish. The Pickup Spanish Program is the only course of its kind, designed specifically to teach you Spanish for meeting Latinas in Latin America.
GROCERIES: Milk (1L)= $1.10 Loaf of Bread= $1.00 Eggs= $1.60 Water (1.5L)= $1.15 Cigarettes= $4.00
JOB OPPORTUNITIES: Teaching English in Guayaquil seems to be the only possibility. If you're qualified for it, try to get work at one of the universities
TAXI: $2.00. More at night.
NOTES: I'd call it a bit of a shit hole if I were put under oath. I tend to avoid cities like this. But I'll give Guayaquil some credit for its promenades and parks. They are definitely the best things to experience in a city that offers little else to do during the day.
OVERALL RATING: 6/10
*More city guides from Ecuador here!