Kontiki Wayra yacht

Photos Courtesy of Kontiki Expeditions

If you have lived in Ecuador for any time, you have been amazed by the almost boundless opportunities to experience once-in-a-lifetime adventures. In this feature, we have shared many of these exciting undertakings—from the mysteries of the cloud forest to the Galápagos Islands, one of the most famous destinations in the world for wildlife watching.

Now, you have the prospect of being among the first to join a select few to sail the Manabí coast in a luxury private yacht and explore the region’s rich gastronomic heritage.

Only 18 passengers will be selected to board the Kontiki Wayra for a four-day, three-night culinary adventure. Aboard this private yacht, you’ll cruise the breathtaking coast of Ecuador.

Gastronomic Voyage in Coastal Ecuador-2

This exclusive experience offers an unprecedented exploration of the region’s culinary delights. Each day, two local chefs, masters of contemporary and ancestral cuisine, will collaborate to create exceptional multicourse meals.

Your special host for the cruise will be Alejandra Espinoza, Ambassador for Gastronomic Tourism of the United Nations World Tourism Organization. She is also the founder of the popular Quito restaurant SOMOS. Alejandra’s mission is to promote Ecuador’s spaces and palette on the global culinary table through contemporary Ecuadorian cuisine.

Chef Alejandra will guide you as you savor the evolution of Ecuadorian flavors, from the simple, yet soul-satisfying dishes enjoyed by ancient tribes to the introduction of European techniques and ingredients by the Spanish.

This is more than a cruise; it’s a voyage through the heart and history of a nation, told through the language of food. Indulge in a luxurious adventure for the palate, where every bite is a connection to the rich tapestry of Ecuadorian culture.

The Kontiki Wayra features nine luxury staterooms with a maximum capacity for 18 people, ensuring a very private and exclusive expedition. On the yacht, you will also find four outdoor lounge areas to relax, one formal interior lounge, both interior and alfresco dining areas, a wine cellar, a cozy area for spa treatments and gym, and a beautiful hot tub from which to enjoy the magnificent seascape. The crew of 13 guarantees world-class service throughout your cruise.

Our journey starts in Manta, a key port city in Manabí, known for its vibrant gastronomic tourism. We’ll transfer to the Port Authority of Manta (APM) to board the M/Y Kontiki Wayra. After check-in, enjoy a welcome cocktail crafted by La Juliana, an award-winning bar from Guayaquil. The evening concludes with a dinner by guest Chef Alejandra Espinoza. Overnight sail to Bahía de Caráquez.

Start the day with breakfast on the yacht, followed by a zodiac transfer to Puerto Amistad in Bahía de Caráquez. We’ll then travel to Iche in San Vicente, home to the Fuegos Foundation’s innovative culinary project. Experience a gastronomic journey with Alejandra, Valentina, and La Juliana, featuring local flavors like cocoa, salprieta, peanuts, and chillangua. Return to the yacht for snacks and music on the sundeck as we sail to Manta Port.

Disembark at Manta and transfer to Puerto Cayo to visit Ocean Side Farm Residences, a community focused on sustainable living. Explore their organic garden and enjoy a culinary collaboration with Alejandra, Cecilia, and La Juliana, blending sea and garden-to-table traditions. Transfer to Machalilla for marine activities in the afternoon.

Our final day takes us to Las Tunas, where a rustic beach house sets the scene for a coastal brunch prepared by Executive Chef Richard Sanchez, Alejandra, and La Juliana. This Manabi table experience combines diverse flavors, evoking memories and the warmth of family. As Chef Cecilia Cedeño says: “Manabí is a Feeling.” Return to Manta and conclude our journey.

Ready to board?

Voyage in Coastal Ecuador

Cuenca Expats Magazine is hosting a presentation for those interested in joining this expedition of luxury sailing along the Manabí Coast and sampling the area’s gourmet restaurants.

At this meeting, we’ll discuss the timing of the trip, logistics, and costs.

We also have some great photos and videos of what you’ll be seeing on the cruise, as well as time to answer all your questions. The presentation will be on Paccari Chocolate Restaurant at Casa Del Coco Bolivar 1266, between Juan Montalvo and Tarqui (in el Centro), Cuenca. Wednesday, July 10th, 4:00 pm. Limited seating is available, so RSVP today at events@expatsmags.com.