Montañita, I wasn’t ready. I thought I was ready. I was wrong. I underestimated just how wild this surf village is and how mercilessly it was going to treat me during my birthday festivities. Montañita is a partier’s paradise. There is very little that you actually have to do during the day, meaning that you can literally party until the sun comes up and not feel bad about it. This nightlife guide for Montañita will give you a run down of how to get down and dirty in this sleepy little surf village.
Where is Montañita?
Montañita is located on the Pacific coast of Ecuador and is by far the best party spot on the coast. It feels almost out of place. On the drive here, whether you’re coming from the south or the north, all you see are small villages and rural Ecuador at its purest. Then all of a sudden, megaclub after megaclub and colorful hotel after hotel. It is a strange sight to see but you just have to roll with it. Montañita is not just a tourist destination for international travelers. A lot of Ecuadorian vacationers go here as well. So while it does feel like a tacky tourist town, it still maintains a very local feel.
Alright let’s get to it.
How To Get Lit in Montañita
There are no rules in Montañita. Drink on the streets. Pass a joint around on the dance floor. Do coke in bathroom stalls. It is pure anarchy and you will love every second of it.
Like I said, there are no rules in Montañita but I’ll give you some guidelines so you get as crazy as possible here.
Sleep All Day
You aren’t going to have the energy to go out if you don’t stock up on sleep during the day. Montañita is as lazy of a town as it gets. There is no need to do anything whatsoever. Smoke a joint, laze away in a hammock or on the beach, and just kick back and relax.
The only real thing to do in Montañita is surf. So if you surf, then surf. It’ll wear you out and give you a good reason to nap before the festivities.
Don’t Get Drunk Too Early
This was the mistake I made on my first few nights out in Montañita. I blacked out before midnight one time and regained clarity around like 4 AM and the party was still raging on. Take it slow in Montañita. Eat dinner at like 9 PM. I haven’t had breakfast before noon my entire time here.
There is always some sort of open bar going on somewhere in Montañita. A lot of hostels have events where you can get ridiculously drunk for ridiculously cheap. Hidden House Hostel had this $5 all-you-can-drink deal for four hours my first night here. I spent $5 all night, followed by $3 for an unbelievably delicious and greasy burger at 4 AM.
The moral of this story is take it slow. The party in Montañita rages on all night and well into the morning. I still cling onto my bad habits from my university town shutting down all clubs at 1 AM. Like bro, the party doesn’t even really get going until after 1 AM here.
If I was responsible, my advice would be to start drinking around 11 PM or later. Most clubs will have some sort of open bar or special early in the night where you can get drunk very quickly and very cheaply. Poco Loco had this deal where they had open bar for 3 hours and it was only $10 to get in. The deals here are crazy.
A Club For Every Night
The fun part about Montañita is that each night, a different club gets the limelight. Lost Beach is known for its wild Monday nights. Caña Grill gets the limelight on Saturdays. Fridays are apparently for Poco Loco. There are a lot of different bars and nightclubs in Montañita. I went to the same club three nights in a row in Baños and practically memorized their entire playlist. Thankfully, Montañita is not like that at all. Variety is the spice of life, and Montañita is pretty freakin’ spicy.
Ask around and you’ll figure out the spots. It does change every now and then but from my experience:
Monday: Lost Beach Club
Tuesday: Dead-ish Day
Wednesday: Caña Grill
Thursday: Poco Loco (Dead-ish Day)
Friday: Poco Loco / Alcatraz
Saturday: Caña Grill and Poco Loco (and the beach!!)
Sunday: Dead-ish Day
I’m not sure if there are actually any dead days in Montañita or if those were just my extra hungover days. Sunday was by far the laziest and sleepiest I had ever been. The streets were packed during the day but none of us had any energy to do anything besides maybe go out to get food.
Saturday night is by far one of the wildest experiences I have ever had while partying. Like I said, Montañita is so lawless that it can border on the side of trashy, especially when you’re on the outside looking in. But do you really think I was on the outside looking in? Hell nah.
It felt like thousands of people lined the streets and the beach dancing and partying all night long. It was like a miniature version of Thailand’s world-renowned Full Moon Party. Montañita’s population is only 4,500 but it feels like the entire population and then some are all on the beach at 3 AM dancing the night away. Like I said, Montañita, I wasn’t ready.
Miscellaneous Montañita Nightlife Information
Drugs in Montañita, Ecuador
Montañita is very lax when it comes to substances. Marijuana is everywhere and it is very easy to find. Just follow your nose. Cocaine in Montañita is also relatively easy to find. On a night out, you’ll probably come across quite a few people doing it. In comparison to the rest of Ecuador, Montañita has a very laid-back attitude when it comes to drugs. I’ve heard MDMA can also be found in Montañita but typically is a bit pricier.
Drunk Food in Montañita
Can’t write a party guide without covering drunk food. The best part of Montañita is the street food people will stay up as late as you do. No matter what time it is, you’ll be able to find at least a couple of people whipping up a greasy hamburger or burrito. These burgers are fire. They pile everything on, from eggs to ham and cheese and meat and veggies and everything.
The next morning, get yourself some encebollado, an Ecuadorian fish soup that is known for fixing up a chuchaqui nice and good.
Safety in Montañita
Like any party city in a foreign country, just be careful with your belongings. I had a friend get her phone pickpocketed last night. The drunker you are, the easier of a target you become. I don’t like speaking in negative generalizations of an entire country, but I did find Ecuador as a whole (especially big cities like Quito and Guayaquil) to feel a bit more dangerous than other countries. Montañita is nowhere near as sketch as Quito and Guayaquil but like I said, just take care with your things and travel in groups.
Other than that, Montañita is a raging good time. I rang in my 25th birthday here and I felt 75 the next morning. Nothing a hard day of napping can’t fix.
Cheers for the read. As always, party on and follow me on Instagram.
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