Info Surf General Villamil, Playas, Ecuador - 2011/12/18 23:11The reason for this post other than providing some good information of course is that I am tired of seeing misinformed posts about surfing/shapers/boards/renting etc. from this area. The people that are posting on here are from Guayaquil the biggest city in Ecuador (100 K from the beach) and believe themselves to be experts in this area when they are really not.
To begin with General Villamil, Playas is the cradle of surf in Ecuador. But it has [un]fortunately not been included in the surf map. It has over 14 point breaks including "el Pelado" considered to be the best wave in Ecuador. Many professional surfers from around the world compare it to Rincon and even think of it as a greater wave than Rincon, California. It requires a large/medium south swell and low tide. Once in a while norths works too.
To continue, Engabao (11 K north of Playas, easily accessed by bus or car for .75 cents) provides a very consistent wave with barrels at low tide. It is a small fishing community with friendly people who provide "casa surf" to be rented cheaply. There is also a hostel owned by a friendly Ecuadorian/Swedish couple to the right of the point (turn right at the bamboo church). They are working on a Permaculture garden and provide a friendly atmosphere for surfers and backpackers with lot's of info about other destinations in Ecuador and the price is very cheap. Great for a first visit to South America!
Moreover, "la Posada" is one of the most powerful waves in Playas. It works with south and north swells, low tide. Lots of barrels. Unfortunately you have to walk little over 1 Km unless you are able to get into the private club "casa blaca" which has taken over the beach and prevents access by car. North of "la Posada", "Pico hambre" to be road with high tide, a strong peak that breaks well with small/medium south swells. The next wave is "mal paso", a long classical wave, functioning well with low tide south east swells. Following this you have "el faro", best at high tide, south swell. Easily accessible with a car.
When you arrive to Playas, go down to the beach which can be seen from the central skate park. There are three high rises and a jetty. That is the first wave in Playas, but it requires a very big swell. Just behind the jetty is Chabelita which is a very long wave for beginners or long boarders, that works well with south medium swell or north. After that you have "el sapo", "las tetas", not very strong but getting a ride home or avoiding the small crowd in "olas verdes" and "shark bay" which are right up the beach. These two waves are the most popular waves for local surfers (I don't blame them). To reach the waves previously mentioned just keep walking north. All these waves require a medium swell, low or high tide.
During December-April (North swell) the conditions are great with no wind so you can ride the beach breaks a bit south from the jetty "los kilometros" 5 1/2 km via Posorja accessed by bus (.25 cents) or taxi ($3 one way).
Anybody who decides to visit Playas will encounter very friendly locals in and out of the water. As you can see there are a plethora of point breaks and beach breaks so people do not get territorial, just show your good attitude, smile and say Hola!
To get here from Guayaquil take "el Villamil" or "Posorja" from "el terminal terrestre" for $2.40 (2 hr) and they don't charge extra for boards. There are plenty of affordable hostels close to the beaches. If you want to eat go to Jalisco the reunion spot of Playas Club Surf (owner: Juan y Johanna "Jalisco Surf"), very friendly and hospitable.