November 27th, 2008 – by: eglp
Manta is a big tuna processing place, when we were docked we could see several boats unloading tuna's and maybe other fish. But we are not talking one or two tuna, hundreds of tunas. Big trucks were loaded with big and small tunas, once loaded they would go to the processing plants so we can have tuna fish sandwiches later. It was amazing the tuna activity. The fishing boats were full of electronic equipment, and one even had a helicopter. It is a big business. Once on shore we went to a button factory, this buttons are made of a seed called tagua. It was a very interesting tour, unfortunately for them not many people buy this type of buttons, they are more expensive than the plastic ones which account for about 90% of all buttons. After that we went to see how the panama hats are made. The process is a lengthy one an one fine hat can take many months to be hand made.You take the leaves of a palm, separate them. Then they are boiled, and separated more. With that the hats are then created. We also went to a textile factory that uses the agave plant. They produce rugs, sacks, and other things. After that we went by where boats are being constructed. This are wooden boats and it was a very interesting thing to see. Finally we went to a museum close to the docks. Manta is very interesting and the people are very friendly.