This village is located on the road from the coastal plain to Guaranda and is in the sub-tropical region, meaning lots of forest, waterfalls and rivers, located at the point where hills start to grow into mountains. As water runs downhill, the cloud tends to creep up gradually during the afternoon.
The centre of the village is a couple of lines of houses along two streets. There’s no room for expansion either up or down the steep hillside. A church and small park has been squeezed in between the streets.
However Balsapamba does have its attractions. The most accessible is the water park, on a bend in the road a kilometre to the north. At this bend you can also head up two dirt tracks. One leads to an interesting house which contains the private archaeological collection of a Señor Gloor (visit by prior appointment). The other climbs 4km to the community of Angas where you can visit a dramatic waterfall and follow a little trail through the forest.
There are also good possibilities for trekking in the surrounding area and high up on a hill you can visit the factory where they make the local speciality, vino de naranja (orange wine).
Where to Stay
Hostería Getsemaní was the only option we found, but it was a good and popular place.
Where to Eat
The options are a bit limited. The best looking restaurant was El Chuzo but the seco de pollo was a bit miserable. The chicken may have been criollo but the sauce had very little flavour. The hotel restaurant proved a better option.
Click here to find out Where to Stay or Where to Eat in Balsapamba.
Buses run directly to Balsapamba from Guayaquil. From other coastal locations you can change in Babahoyo. From there the journey is less than an hour. From the highlands, take a bus to Guaranda and change or go to Ambato and take a bus for Guayaquil via Guaranda. This journey, climbing into the mountains, passing Chimorazo and descending again, is spectacular.
Read more about the Routes to Balsapamba: Babahoyo – Ambato.