Surf, pigs and puppies in the desert. The perfect place to call home for a week.
While Puerto Engabao is only 30 minutes from Playas, it feels like another world. The climate is dry and deserty with little vegetation, yet it's next to a beach. Here you will see dogs and families of pigs of all different shapes and sizes play in the fast drying mud on the dirt roads. The town predominantly consists of an Indigenous fisherman population who battle steep waves on the point break to get out to sea. In the mornings the shores are decorated with fishing boats which disappear during the course of the day and come back in the evenings.
There are only two hostels, but a bunch of alternate accomodation options. You can stay in hospedajes (guest houses) or surf shelters. We stayed in a hospedaje on the point (near the lighthouse) called El Delfin which had the everything we needed and more (bed, bathroom, fan, dehumidifier, fridge, wifi & stoves). The owners were so kind and accomodating, offering us free food, drinks, cheap accomodation and any help or advice we needed. Truely hospitable!
The port (puerto) is 3km down from the town itself. Here you can find very basic meal options, for slightly inflated prices in a few local eateries. If you're wanting to cook (which will save you a lot of money) you'll have to take the bus back to Playas for a quick grocery run. For all of your seafood needs, however, you are in the right place. Shrimp costs $5 per kilo and you can get fish for free if you walk past at the right time (otherwise it's a few dollars). You can also find crab, lobsters and plenty more (cost is based on size and type).
There are beach breaks running all the way down the beach which are empty for surfing, but the best break of all is the point. It's a right break and when the waves are decent size (around 6ft) they barrel in front of the rocks. After the barrel there's nice long vertical walls for carving. You can surf from the right of the rocks where it is all beach and sand bottom.
Be careful at high tide as that's when the boats go out from the shore. Go out at low tide or opt for the beach break.
To get to Engabao you must go through Playas which has a direct bus (about 30 minutes, $0.75) to the Port. You can find the bus across the street from Bank of Guayaquil, Playas.