I stayed in Puerto Lopez for 2 weeks so had a lot of time to check things out. I first stayed at a hotel on main strip. But was not the greatest. Then searched down the beach and
found Mandalay which looked promising but was too expensive for my long stay. I found Nantu and it had everything and the best price. Has a pool, big restaurant, and nice bar. The rooms are all new with massive rails and beams, is very Amazon looking, and secure and gated so I was at ease with the car rental. Has private decks and hammocks. What I found amazing was these two very cool dogs that guard the place at night and if you go out for a walk on the beach and if you pet them before you go, these two dogs by themselves stay back a few feet as if they were two soldiers and quietly keeping you safe where ever you walk. I gave them a nice tip consisting of a delicious kabob on a stick from a local street vendor (1 dollar) and felt we were friends for life :) Even if you go in the water they will go right in and wait a distance back and never got in our way. When we went back they just went back to the front area of the hotel and didn't follow further and went to sleep. They were so obedient to us even though we were strangers I couldn't believe it. The hosts speaks perfect English but are Ecuadorian so they know everything and we had a lot of fun at night learning about Ecuador and the best restaurants and secret hotspots from them. They arranged for all our tours for us and made sure they were english speakers and each day a new guide with a new adventure came and picked us up at the hotel Including an awesome trip to de la playa island, which we went snorkeling and fed huge turtles. Watched the blue footed boobies dive bomb fish from high above. First thing you see when you step onto the island are crazy red crabs scooting all along the beach which was hilarious. You won't see that in the states! Of course the whale watching trip was another story in itself And took a private all day big fish fishing trip by an Ecuadorean named "Winston Churchill" :) Felt I was in a Robinson Caruso story. Missed the horse riding though. The beach in puerto Lopez was clean. And not even a trace of seaweed to wrap around you. You can wade out into the gentle surf for a thousand feet and still only go up to your waist. I did this at 12 at night and felt totally safe. BTY the sand is baby soft and no nasty rocks to hurt you.
Food was so fresh that everything you eat is a new experience. Ate a whole lobster for 12 bucks! Took a sulfer mud bath in agua Blanca. And peeked at golden beach (yes The sand is golden color). Was the best vacation I ever had. By the way wireless phone Internet works everywhere in Ecuador! If you have a smartphone with gps it will be a life saver as most streets don't even have a sign. As I left, I wish I could take those dogs home with me as I already miss those long walks on the beach with them.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.