After flying from Bergen via Amsterdam and Bonaire. I arrived in Guayaquil, situated on the coast in the southern parts of Ecuador. Guayaquil is the largest and the most populous city in Ecuador, with around 2.994 million people (2020) in the metropolitan area, as well as the nation's main port. Guayaquil is located on the western bank of the Guayas River, which flows into the Pacific Ocean at the Gulf of Guayaquil. I was picked up at the airport by my Galápagos travel agent, and was driven to Grand Hotel Guayaquil. To my surprise, the hotel was guarded by military-looking personell carrying what looked like pump-action shotguns.
After one day in this city, I understood the need for tight security. After early check-in, I had a full day to spend in the city, and decided to go sightseeing. The stores were closed due to a national holiday, so there was not much to do. I went down to the Malecon 2000, the boardwalk overlooking the Guayas River. A nice place, but... The attitude of some of the locals was not particularly nice. In just one day, I experienced being spat at for no reason, stared at, and tried intimidated by people suddenly running against me. I definitely did not feel welcome there. Other westerners were few and far between on the street, maybe explaining the negativity from some of the locals? So basically Guayaquil = shithole (at least for tourists).