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Visiting a Fish Market Near Salinas Ecuador

Posted in: Ecuador Travel

While we were vacationing in Salinas, a friend offered to take us to a local fish market.  We love fresh fish, so we jumped at the opportunity.

fish market on Ecuadors pacific coast

The market was very busy, full of people bustling all over carrying all different variety of fish.   There were big ones, little ones, red and blue ones, some swordfish, and some huge tuna.  Our daughter enjoyed seeing the fish but seeing the fish getting gutted and cleaned didn’t sit so well with her.

fish market on Ecuadors pacific coastThere were wooden tables set up all over the beachfront, and they were cleaning the fish right there while people waited for what they had picked out.  As we stepped on to the beach area where the market was taking place I realized I had made the wrong choice in footwear.

My flip-flops quickly became full of wet sand, fish scales, and who knows what else.  The scene proved to be a little overwhelming for our daughter, so we decided to wait on some steps while Bryan took care of the dirty stuff.

fish market on Ecuadors pacific coastAs we stood there waiting, I had to do a little damage control.  Our daughter was quite disturbed at seeing the cleaning process happening right there in front of her.  So I explained that this was just part of normal life for the people working/buying at the market, and that they didn’t appear to be all that disturbed by it.

As we talked she was able to rationalize the situation, and accepted the fact that this had to take place in order to process the fish.  Although she didn’t enjoy seeing the messy stuff, it was a good experience for her.  She absolutely loves eating fish, so that went a long way in smoothing the situation over in her mind.

fish market on Ecuadors pacific coastWe did enjoy watching the pelicans and albatross swooping and circling around the market.  There was one pelican in particular that sat on the roof of one of the buildings keeping a close eye on all the activity taking place below.  We called him “King of the Market” and watched as he swooped down time and again trying to get a bite to eat.

We tried two different kinds of fish, Albacore and Mahi Mahi, we got 5 pounds for $16.  The fish was delicious, and our friend offered to shrink wrap some for us to take home.  We just finished it off last week, next visit we’ll be going back for more.  But this time I’ll wear my sneakers, and stick to the steps.

Read more about fishing in Ecuador.

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Meet the Author

Since moving to Ecuador in 2009, Dena and Bryan have made their living as bloggers. Dena is a partner at Storyteller Media, a content marketing company for Canadian travel brands. She is a contributor to Bryan Haines and is co-founder of Click Like This - a photo tutorial blog.

6 comments… add one
  • Bernard Barbour Jan 9, 2017, 6:35 pm

    Excellent trip report. Thanks for sharing.

  • Jim Cohoon Oct 5, 2011, 5:01 pm

    Hi Bryan,

    Is it possible to enjoy a low budget vacation in Salinas? We’re thinking about going in early November for a few days.

  • bud busch Aug 15, 2011, 6:23 pm

    we spent 3 months 2 winters ago traveling ecuador. we spent 2 weeks in Cuenca and did like it. we also like walking the beach and looking at the ocean. why would you give that up to be in Cuenca? we are coming back for another 3 months the middle of this december and we are having a hard time between going to Salinas or Cuenca and making the final choice as to buying instead of renting.
    thanks for your info in advance
    Bud

    • Bryan Haines Sep 6, 2011, 7:11 pm

      Hi Bud – you make a good point. I always thought I wanted to live on the beach – until I lived in the Andes. Really is a personal thing – one certainly isn’t better than the other. But we sure love to visit the coast.

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