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Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Re: Quiet week

This is in reply to Gallant Fox's comment, and I thought I should post it lest I give people the wrong idea about Bahia.

If you are already planning to come to Ecuador for a season, then Bahia de Caraquez is probably the best place to stay. We haven't been to Puerto Lucia, but have heard from Don and Marie on Freezing Rain that it has less of a social scene than here. Yes, you have all the nice amenities (which were off limits when they stayed there), but according to them most of the cruisers who stayed at Lucia were there to work long days on boat projects and had little interest in socializing. Here in Bahia there are over 40 boats (not all of which are occupied) with cruisers who are interested in things like Mexican train, cards, beading, yoga, learning Spanish, eating out, trading DVDs, swap meets, and plenty of socializing during happy hour at the bar.

I think most people are happy here especially if, as I wrote, you have plans to leave the boat and travel. For some of us (and I know from talking to others that I'm not the only one), it's difficult to park the boat in one place for six months and not be actively cruising. Even with easy access to shore the boat becomes smaller, and life becomes somewhat routine. I personally miss moving from anchorage to anchorage, seeing all the wildlife, and the swimming and snorkeling we did during our summers in the Sea. Most people wouldn't miss the heat, the bees, chubascos, etc. of the Sea and might prefer this. Lots of people are here because of the cooler weather, but the almost constant cloudiness can have a negative affect on some people.

If you plan to travel, Bahia de Caraquez is a great place to bring your boat. People have been taking wonderful trips throughout Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia. And you can leave the boat to return to the States without worrying about it since even if something does happen, there are lots of other cruisers on hand to straighten things out.

The ecuatorianos we've met are friendly, open, and helpful people who are happy to have you visiting their beautiful country, and Ecuador is a great jumping off place for traveling the rest of South America. And when your visas run out you have many options for extending your cruising from here - the Galapagos, the South Pacific, Chile, return to Panama, etc.