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Bahia de Caraquez, widely reguarded as Ecuadors cleanest coastal city. A comprehensive look updated in January 2012.

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The population of Bahia is currently pegged at around 30,000 residents, many of which are the descendants of an ancient culture. A visit to the museum (one of the best in the country) will confirm the long genetic lines stretching back to antiquity in the area. On the walls are photos of modern residents and by just taking a few steps to a nearby display case you can see the same features duplicated in generations of ancient pottery on display.

The city seems focused on sustainable growth and development. Bahia de Caraquez enjoys the reputation of being the cleanest city on the coast of Ecuador.

1997 and 1998 were hard years for Bahia. In 1997 torrential rains triggered a landslide in Bahia de Caraquez that exceeded 7 on the Richter Scale that killed one resident. Then in August of 1998 an earthquake struck Bahia toppling one building. and generally wrecking havok on the seaside community. Since these two incidents life in Bahia has been quiet.

On February 23, 1999 Bahia de Caraquez declared itself an Eco-city and has been working to maintain the title ever since. It seems to have paid off in a cleaner city and increased tourism, particularly among foreigners.

Bahía de Caráquez sits on a peninsula where the Rio Chone empties into the Pacific Ocean. The city was once a thriving seaport that has morphed into the most attractive city on the coast.

I spent many of my years in Charleston, South Carolina. Much to my delight, I see many similarities to Bahia de Caraquez today and Charleston, South Carolina in the late 1950s.

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