Out of Season Whales
Trip Start Sep 26, 2009
55Trip End Jan 06, 2010
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Where I stayed
Hostal Sol Inn
We had a bit of a nightmare trip from Peru into Ecuador... we did the overnight bus, which meant crossing the border in the middle of the night (according to Lonely Planet, this particular border is the worst one in South America!) Well, it took 2 hours to cross the border... fun fun! we got to the border about 2 hours into the journey... so about 2am! gt off the bus and ushered by some official looking guys to fill out forms (which they did for us...) seemed a bit odd, but you dont like to argue with "official" looking people in the middle of the night... that is, until they try and rip you off... they told Al he had to pay 10 dollars... this is where I started my rampage.... bearing in mind it was 2am, and I was exhausted having dozed off for a few minutes here and there of the extremely bumpy bus (as we got the back seat AGAIN!)... I had read about scams to try and get you to pay, so I said "no pago para ir en Ecuador.. soy inglesa, no debo pagar... no voy a pagar..." I got louder and more annoying... I was trying to say I donīt have to pay to go across the border, but it came out as "I am not paying, I must not pay, I am English... ha ha!" anyway, I made quite a scene and he then said "ok, just a coca cola then", so I started again, threw the paper back at him and marched towards the proper official lady behind the desk - he was quite embarrased at this point, and just gave me the paper.... = Gringo Wins!!
We got stamped out of Peru, easily then... and then got back on the bus as the man said it was quite far to the next office to get stamped into Ecuador, and that it was dangerous...! we drove for about 20minutes... stopped in a village, dropped people off, picked more up.... and then eventually got to another office to get stamped into Ecuador (only a few other people on the bus bothered getting off to get stamped in or out - not sure why...?!) Got stamped electronically into Ecuador, waiting for some locals to sort something out, and then on our way... all in half an hour or so... seemed seamless... until I woke up to a torch in my face... we had to get off so they could search the bus... then the luggage (all the locals fgor off to check their bags, we couldnt be bothered...!)... set off again, and stopped again, another bag search .... finally off again, and lights off so tried to doze off again... until we got stopped AGAIN, and had to get off, and show our passports again (not all of us again!??!!) they searched the bus AGAIN.... and then finally we were off.... Welcome to Ecuador!
We got to Guayaquil and were surprised at the Americanised bus terminal... had KFC for breakfast, as it was that or any other number of fried chicken outlets... and bought our ticket to the coast...
We arrived in this muddy, dusty, tumbleweed town and found a hostel... and decided to go on a trip to the Isla de la Plata... we knew it was out of season for whales, but thought the day trip sounded fun anyway, snorkelling and exporing the island... so we booked it for the next day... the cash point (the one and only) wasnt working and we had very little money on us, so had to pay on our card, and an extra 10 dollars for admin - I dont like working in US dollars ... and then had 10 dollars left for eating tomorrow! (oooops!)
We spent the evening relaxing on the hammock and sharing a rum and coke (which we had brought from Peru.. luckily!)
Isla de la Plata
What a trip... we set off, and walked along the beach past the fishing market, saw sharks, merlins, giant tuna, and all manner of other things, and laughed as the birds swooped down trying to steal the fish! - we then got on our boat and set off for the island... I then overheard the captain saying something to our guide, and thought he mentioned a whale... then they opened our side (and he whispered that there was a possibility we may see one)... and then we did...a mother and baby.... we drove next to them for about half an hour, watching in awe at these amazing creatures.... and then the guide had just explained that it was really rare to see the whale and at this time of year, it certainly wouldnt jump... when it did.... we all stood there absolutely amazed... including the guide...! he said it was to protect her baby.. and so we then left them to continue their journey and we continued ours to the island... we parked up and were surrounded by turtles... about 15 of them... another surprise... it turned out to be one of my best days so far on this trip! We then spent a few hours walking on the island, we chose the longer walk, seeing loads of birds, blue footed boobies, red footed boobies, nazca boobies and lots more... we then had lunch , did some snorketlling and headed back to Puerto Lopez to get changed, get our one dollar dinner from the chicken lady, and get the night bus to Quito.... penniless!!!
ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!!! Out of season whale! -xx