I have seen in the past a lot of discussion about the safety of Guayaquil. I have just spent a week here, came for 3 days and extended because I enjoyed the experience. The government have done an awesome job of developing the riverside (Malecon). It has a theme park feel to it with lots of activities for children (free). There are cafes, sitting areas and park-like settings. Toilets (free) are plentiful along the walk, plenty of rubbish bins and its spotlessly clean. Yes there is a significant police presence throughout the entire tourist areas but its certainly not intimidating and I never was uncomfotable. Day and evening there are literally thousands of people walking the Malecon enjoying the Christmas decorations and festivities. The city has lovely parks and wonderful old buildings and so many other attractions also.
In one week here I saw no more than a dozen western tourists (if that) so I hope this post helps bring more tourists the this beautiful city.
Thank you for sharing your positive experience. I love my adopted city. Yes, there are dangerous areas, butuch of the city is vibrant, and interesting. My family and I have lived here over 13 years now, and I love soamy things here. There are many expats here who have lived in Guayaquil for decades, many of them working professionals.