The Spondylus Route, also known as the “Route of the Sun,” is a network of pre-Columbian trade routes that linked ancient cultures of the Andean region, from Ecuador to Peru. This route was named after the Spondylus shell, a valuable commodity that was traded along the way, and it has played a crucial role in the development of the region. Today, the Spondylus Route offers an unforgettable adventure through history and culture, and it has become a popular destination for travelers looking for a unique experience.
Exploring the Spondylus Route
The Spondylus Route stretches over 1000 km along the Pacific Coast of Ecuador, passing through the provinces of Manabí, Santa Elena, and Guayas. The route encompasses a diverse range of landscapes, from lush tropical forests to arid deserts, and includes a variety of attractions such as archaeological sites, museums, and picturesque towns.
Archaeological Sites through the Spondylus Route
The Ecuadorian coast is home to several impressive archaeological sites along the Spondylus Route. The Agua Blanca archaeological site in Manabí features a well-preserved pre-Columbian village with houses, plazas, and a museum displaying artifacts from the Manteño culture.
The La Libertad archaeological site in Santa Elena boasts several pyramids and tombs from the ancient Valdivia culture, while the Salango archaeological site in Manabí features a museum with artifacts from the Machalilla culture. These sites offer a fascinating glimpse into the ancient cultures that once inhabited the Ecuadorian coast and are a must-visit for history and archaeology enthusiasts.
The Ecuadorian coast is home to several museums along the Spondylus Route that showcase the rich cultural heritage of the region. The Museo del Pueblo Montubio in Santa Elena offers a unique insight into the traditions and customs of the local Montubio community, while The Museo Amantes de Sumpa in Manabí displays artifacts from the ancient Jama-Coaque culture. These museums offer a fascinating glimpse into the unique traditions and history of the Ecuadorian coast and are a must-visit for anyone traveling along the Spondylus Route.
The Spondylus Route is also home to several picturesque towns that offer a glimpse into the local way of life. Two of the most charming towns are Bahía de Caraquez, surrounded by the Pacific Ocean and Chone Rive with the most stuning sunsets around.
And, Puerto Lopez, a fishing village that serves as a gateway to the Machalilla National Park. This town is known for its seafood restaurants and its vibrant nightlife. Another must-see town is Montañita, a popular surfing destination that attracts visitors from all over the world.
The Spondylus Route is a journey through time and culture that offers a unique perspective on the history and traditions of the Andean region. Whether you are interested in exploring archaeological sites, visiting museums, or experiencing the local culture, the Spondylus Route has something for everyone. So why not pack your bags and embark on this unforgettable adventure?