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Manta, also known as San Pablo de Manta, is one of the most popular destinations in the province of Manabi. It is located in a bay, which has made it known for being an international port on the coast of the Pacific Ocean. It is called "The Gateway to the Pacific" because it is one of the main ports that contributes to the Ecuadorian economy. Manta has a large population of 307,450 inhabitants according to the 2020 census, which makes it the seventh most populated city in the country. The city is the core of the metropolitan area of Central Manabí, along with the provincial capital, Portoviejo.

Manta is one of the most important economic, industrial, financial and commercial centers of Ecuador. The city's main commerce activity is fishing, especially tuna fishing, although vegetable oil companies and warehouses are also important to the economy here as well.

Manta is known as the first tuna port in the world and is one of the main ports used as a passage for cruises from the American coast of the Pacific. Manta is the most popular and visited seaside port in Ecuador.

How to get there:

There are a few different transportation options to get to Manta. These include personal vehicles, taxis, or buses that travel along the Spondylus Route, making frequent stops.

The distance from Guayaquil to Manta is 123 miles (199 km) along E482 which takes around 3.5 hours.

From Salinas to Manta there is a distance of 130 miles (209.8 km) via La Ruta del Spondylus/E15 with a time of approximately 4 hours. This is the most recommended route as it shows the landscapes of the coastal area of Ecuador that are not to be missed!

If you want to get to Manta from Quito the distance is 247 miles (397 km) via E20 and E38 with a time of approximately 7 hours.

Where to stay:

Manta has many housing options that will provide you great service and comfort in order to have an unforgettable stay. The top 4 most recommended hotels in Manta are:

  1. Wyndham Sail Plaza

  2. Hotel Poseidon

  3. MantaHost Hotel

  4. Hotel Oro Verde

Where to eat:

For the best culinary experience in Manta we suggest visiting the following restaurants: 1. Martinique

2. MegaFlipper

3. Las Velas

4. Maido (Japanese food)

5. La Catrina (Mexican food)

6. Barbara (for high quality meat)

What to do:

Manta has a range of activities to do such as visiting beaches, markets, museums and more. The popular Murciélago beach is located in the northwest corner of the city along with the Santa Marianita beach that is well known for kitesurfing. Canoa beach is a favorite for surfers but if you are looking for a more quiet place the Tarqui beach is a great option, especially because you’ll also be able to take a look at the local fish market close to the sea. If you are in search of some fun there are also bars and restaurants clustered along the Malecón Escénico and other nearby streets. Lastly, if you would like to learn a little bit about the history of Manta, the Central Bank Museum, which contains pre-Columbian relics of indigenous tribes, is close by as well.


Manta is highlighted by the friendliness and hospitality of its people, which makes this canton of the province of Manabi highly preferred by both locals and foreigners. Both locals and foreigners of Manta can see that the city has a lucrative job market full of hard working people. The people of Manta are recognized by locals and foreigners alike for their dedication to progress and honest hard work.

The development that Manta has seen in recent years is undoubtedly more visible and occurs mainly in the areas of the city where businesses are concentrated. Although the benefits of these developments are also reaching the urban outskirts of the canton. The majority of the population still lives in conditions of poverty, certainly, but in recent years this has been mitigated by creating access to basic services. These services are slowly improving in the city and little by little are reaching more remote areas. All this is in thanks to large foreign investors that have generated more jobs and a better lifestyle for the people of Manta.

Adapting to a new way of life

Adapting to a new lifestyle in Manta will not be a challenge for the foreigner as the coastal life here is of high quality and provides access to all daily needs. An interesting fact worth noting is that the coast of Manta does not experience hurricanes, as many people would think. For this reason we find a high percentage of North Americans, Europeans, and Asians residing in Manta who are living happy and safe lives.

Another benefit that the city of Manta has to offer is its own private airport, which allows anyone to get to know the rest of Ecuador with ease. A trip from Manta to another city in Ecuador is the perfect plan for a weekend change of scenery.

It is for these reasons and more that in the last few years Manta has seen an economic increase of thousands of dollars coming from both local and foreign investors.

Additionally the city has had numerous new commercial businesses open their doors, including new office buildings, luxury hotels, restaurants, a state-of-the-art cinema, and a shopping mall with renowned stores. Other new projects currently underway include a new port for cruise ships, expansion of the existing cargo port, new private hospitals, highways and more.

In conclusion, Manta is one of the most recommended places to live in Ecuador. Living by the sea, in a safe and highly developed city is hard to beat!

In this link you can watch a series of videos about the new changes to the immigration law in Ecuador and how they can affect you.

Or, you can book a 15 minutes FREE OF CHARGE appointment here!

The EcuaAssist Team


The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials available on this site are for general informational purposes only.


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