Skip to Content

Why I Decided to Move to Loja Ecuador: Jesse Bayer

This is a post by Jesse Bayer and is part of our Ecuador Expat Series. A successful NYC based Real Estate Investor, Jesse sold his holdings in 2013 to move with his family to Ecuador and co-found Abundant Living Ecuador – a real estate and relocation services company based out of Loja. 

Why I Decided to Move to Loja Ecuador: Jesse Bayer

When I made the choice to leave New York City with my family and relocate to South America, there was a set of parameters that informed my search for a suitable destination.

I was looking for warm weather, safety, fertile land, and clean, abundant water, in an area located a safe distance from volcanoes, fault lines, the coast, large population centers, and nuclear energy facilities.

loja ecuador
After an exhaustive search I settled on Southern Ecuador, ultimately Loja. Ecuador, and Loja in particular really offer the best of both worlds.

Infrastructure such as airports, roads, power, basic services, and Internet are excellent yet the old time customs remain.

Because Loja, and much of southern Ecuador are off the beaten expat trail, it is absent of some of the problems associated with a large expat community.

Introduction to Life in Loja, Ecuador

Reasons to Move to Loja Ecuador

One of the highlights of living in this area is the variety of climates. With 4 distinct climates within 45 minutes of Loja, any climate, lifestyle, or weekend getaway is accessible.

The city itself boasts a temperate climate, all the normal shopping and entertainment one would expect, yet the feel of a small town. It’s amazing how familial it is.

With the cost of lunch under $3 and high-end apartments on the market from $90,000, the quality of life/cost ratio is exceptional.

move to loja ecuador
view loja ecuador
People are formal and polite. You never see verbal disputes. It’s a quiet, safe city that lends itself to a pace and lifestyle that is really nice.

One of the things I enjoy most are the natural juices made to order, so common here, for around $1. The Sunday market also stands out to me. I do all my food shopping there.

A staggering quantity of every imaginable fruit and vegetable displayed by vendors, many of whom grow the food themselves, locally, including a large variety of organic.

And the prices! I shop for a family of three each week for $30-$60, nearly all organic. And the bulk of that is coconuts for coconut water I buy for $1 each!

living in loja ecuador
Loja is not for everyone however. World-class dining options are few and far between. If you are looking for a glamorous and exciting nightlife, you will be disappointed with your options.

That said, the combination of natural beauty, climate, cost of living, and quality of life benefits are hard to find anywhere in the world.

abundant living ecuador
jesse bayer ecuadorThis is a post by Jesse Bayer. A successful NYC based Real Estate Investor, Jesse sold his holdings in 2013 to move with his family to Ecuador and co-found Abundant Living Ecuador – a real estate and relocation services company based out of Loja. Jesse has prepared a free Ecuador Relocation Guide.

Here's our favorite travel gear:

Here is the gear we love to travel with. To capture our adventure and to travel safe and comfortable.

See all our favorite stuff here: Recommended Gear

Travel Insurance

Accidents happen. We recommend World Nomads and Safety Wing for those times. 

Suzanne Pearse

Thursday 28th of June 2018

Do you know if there is an Argentine Tango community nearby?


Sunday 15th of April 2018

Hi- I'm retired and thinking I would like to spend a couple of months in Loja. I understand that there is a training course for TESOL. Are there possibilities for a couple month rental without staying in a hotel?

jon wolaver

Saturday 25th of September 2021

@Sherry, i know nothing about yur topic. i have a TEFL certificate that i earned at ITTO guadalajara mexico. given 3 universities i thought i might be able to teach english to university students. good luck with the TESOL thing. If you have difficulties (for me, computers and lesson plans) be sure to talk to an instructor. i never did and had substantial problems, though i eventually made it through. good luck. luck favors the prepared mind. jw

Maggie Martin

Friday 6th of April 2018

Are there any Bridge Clubs in Loja ?

David Pagano

Wednesday 28th of March 2018

We are about two years out from totally retiring and looking at Loja as our destination. We are considering exploring the area on a trip 28 APR to 2 May ... what would you suggest as things to do in a short period of tome to get a feel for the City ... Any hotel suggestions? Appreciate any and all advice you have ... we have lived and explored in many places overseas ... from what we have read Loja sounds exceptional as a quite lifestyle.

Drew n Sherry Taylor

Wednesday 7th of June 2017

Jesse, People are funny animals! Our desire to move to Ecuador is so we WON'T have to put up with hostile folks! We appreciate anyone willing to take the time to share their information and experiences. We also believe that a person should research a half dozen or so different opinions at a minimum as they are so subjective. You certainly provided enough info to intrigue us enough that we are considering Loja for our retirement future. Thank you for your review! Drew n Sherry Taylor

Jesse Bayer

Thursday 22nd of June 2017

Thank you Drew and Sherry, I appreciate it.