The origin of Montecristi hats
This is Pile a small village located 30km away from Manta, this is the place where the Montecristi hat was first woven; its population has been weaving hats for over 200 years, their economy sustains on harvesting Toquilla straw, weaving hats, farming and tourism.
The most experienced artisans can weave 3 hats per year and they can cost over $2000 easily paid by the European market.
We will find a school, built by the government in order to preserve the tradition and the identity that these artisans give to our province; at this school the students take a course that last over 2 years to become a "maestro artesano", at the school we also have a small gallery, where you will see some of their best artwork they have; they still manufacture hats for other shops in Ecuador and some of them can be found in Montecristi.
In this tour we will also visit the lighthouse in San Lorenzo beach.