Javier Valencia runs tours to destinations all over Esmeraldas Province. He's a font of information about the city's Afro-Ecuadorian culture and can take you to marimba and dance rehearsals and shows, and to receive a traditional African cleansing and aura-reading ceremony, complete with cigar. If you have time, he can take you up the Río Cayapas into rural Afro-Ecuador.

Javier builds marimbas and other musical instruments and is in the process of converting his small home into a cultural workshop.