Portoviejo, Ecuador - Polarsteps
Portoviejo, Ecuador: Founded in March 1535 which makes it one of Ecuador's oldest cities. When it was founded it was located on the coast and was given the name "Villa Nueva de San Gregorio de Portoviejo." The city was moved inland 30 kilometers (19 miles) because of attacks from the indigenous people in 1628. Apparently, they didn't like the Spaniards taking over their lands. The city has a population of around 210,000. In 2016 there was a 7.8 earthquake that killed more than 300 people here in Portoviego.
In 2019 UNESCO recognized Portoviejo as part of its Creative Cities Network. They received that recognition because of their preservation of ancestral recipes and their gastronomy in general. I can attest to the delicious encellobado. Encellobado is a fish soup and is incredible. The climate is unbeatable: daytime highs average 29° C, (84° F); and nights average 22° C, (72° F).
On my first afternoon out walking, I came across two English-speaking people. A young guy whose English is almost, but not quite, conversational, and a man in a variety store who had lived for 20 years in New Jersey and one year in New York. He told me he is from Peru, but relocated to Ecuador because his daughter lives here.
So, my impressions: I like this small city, but for my personal preference for a place to live it is on the large side. The city has some really nice parks which is a big plus in my opinion. There is a new mall being built, also a plus. And, like all the Ecuador towns/cities I have visited so far, the streets are in surprisingly good condition.
My South America Journey