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Experiences at La Libertad, Ecuador

By Val Ellis last modified Feb 08, 2010 11:18 AM

Published: 2010-02-08 11:18:00
Countries: Ecuador

After a recent visit and a 6-week haulout in Puerto Lucia, La Libertad, Ecuador, I’d like to offer the following info which may be helpful for others.

The clearing in procedure is made a lot easier if you fill in and email the multi-page Excel worksheet to the authorities before departing your previous port.

The form – which is obviously designed for cargo ships – can be found in

I sent the completed form to [email protected] and [email protected] with a copy to [email protected]

Using an agent is still required. We used Roque Mariano Proaño Parraga ( [email protected] ). Upon arrival all the authorities came on board with the agent and a big stack of printouts of my form. Instead of filling in a single form, I just needed to sign and hit the boat stamp on each copy. (lots of them)

When checking out, the agent picked up our passports a day before and took them to be stamped for us. Next day he arrived onboard with the Customs officer, with all forms ready to be signed and stamped. The final bill Roque presented to us reads:

  • Reception capitania                   44.50
  • Migracion Rec Y Despacho 30.00
  • Medico Desanidad 15.00
  • Farosy Boyas 2009-2010 11.68
  • Daspacho Capitania 44.99
  • Movilizacion 35.00
  • Servicio De Agencia (Agent fee) 150.00 TOTAL COST OF IN/OUT $ US 331.17 (Not a cheap deal for a budget cruiser!)

The marina and hard stand fees were comparable to similar facilities elsewhere in the Pacific and we found the drier climate and the work yard in general good for getting our steel hull stripped and painted. It is easy to find things to whinge about but also good to remember that disappointments are always a result of false expectations. The staff were friendly and helpful, Andres (the travel lift operator) spoke good english and was extremely professional and skilful with lifting boats and running all the daily yard operations. The security in Puerto Lucia is better than I’ve ever seen elsewhere. One might be able to leave a hundred dollar bill lying on the ground and the staff would bring it back to you. (It was nice to leave tools and paints under the boat overnight and know that they’ll be there the next morning.) There was a good wifi covering the marina and also free terminals at the reception.

On the other hand, the infrastructure of the marina and some yard facilities needed upgrading and more maintenance. The yard is missing its own proper toilet/shower block (the porta potty doen’t really make up for it). The surge from the open ocean swells creeps into the marina and makes life at the pontoon a little restless at best, almost untenable at worst. Natural oil seeps out from the ocean floor, making the water less than desireable for long term storage. There is a lot of room for improvement before the marina / yard can be brought up a little closer to the almost 5-star standard of the rest of the resort complex.

I thank Mario, Galo, Andres and the entire yard crew for the smiles and the help that was always available for us.

I hope the owner wakes up to extend his vision of quality all the way to the wave breaker and the facilities immediately behind it)

Would I come here again? Yes, most definitely, but I would probably take the boat out of the water rather than leaving it into the marina.


Lauri G. Strengell
Sy Aliisa