Galapagos Cruises visit the archipelago visited by Darwin when he discovered the Theory of Evolution. Walk amongst giant tortoises, blue-footed boobies and iguanas. Swim with whales, sea lions and even sharks.
The Galapagos Islands archipelago is comprised of 19 islands located 1,000 km from Ecuador. It is located where three ocean currents meet, which accounts for its ecosystem. The unspoiled nature, the harmonious and balanced ecosystem which has been left completely to develop in its unique own way make the Galapagos archipelago a beautiful place to include on your bucket list. The ecosystem is so pure that one can almost witness Darwin’s theory of evolution in action. The Galapagos Islands were discovered in 1535. In 1835 the English naturalist Charles Darwin stayed and observed the unique life. In 1978, UNESCO declared the Galapagos Natural Heritage.
San Cristobal island has endemic species such as: The Mockingbird Nesomimus melanotis, lava lizard (Microlophus bivittatus), Chatham Leaf-toed Gecko (Phyllodactylus leei) and the tortoises. All of these species can be observed in this place, the beach is really big, and it works as a nesting zone for marine tortoises. Between January and May, it is common to find the footprints of the female tortoises that have climbed to the sand dunes to deposit their eggs.
Located on the north-eastern coast of Hood, we find Gardner Bay. It provides an excellent beach for relaxing, swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, and the opportunity to observe sea lions. The island is great for spotting blue-footed boobies, albatrosses and Nazca boobies. A beautiful site on the oceanfront, the large waved albatrosses use the cliff as a launching pad. The famous attraction is the magnificent blowhole, spurting water high into the air at least from 50 to 75 meters high. This site presents wonderful photograph opportunities.
The start point for most Galapagos Cruises. Puerto Ayora has restaurants and accommodation. you can visit the Charles Darwin Research Station, and El Chato Tortoise Reserve.
Isabela is the largest island with five active volcanoes. It covers almost 60% of the total land of the Archipelago. There are hiking trails and snorkeling, Visit Volcan Alcedo and Volcan Darwin. The island is still in formation presenting recent eruptions of several of its volcanoes. In Isabela is the highest point of the islands, the Wolf volcano with 1707 meters above sea level.
You can see penguins, flightless cormorants, marine iguanas, blue footed, pelicans, sea lions, as well as abundant red crabs. In the skirts and boilers of the six volcanoes of Isabela you can see land iguanas and turtles, as well as finches, cormorants, flamingos, Galapagos hawks, Galápagos pigeons and interesting vegetation.
In Puerto Villamil there are also several historical events such as the existence of the penal colony, as a witness is the so-called wall of tears that according to what is told was built by the prison inmates who were forced to place one by one the stones that make it up.
This site offers probably the best flamingo lagoon in the Galapagos. It is also one of the largest in the islands. It’s situated between two tuff lava cones that give the area a special atmosphere. There are various species of shorebirds to observe besides flamingos; the most frequent are common stilts, white-checked pintail ducks, and other migratory birds.
It is very interesting to see the two distinct beaches: “The Green Beach” (due to its high percentage of olivine crystals in the sand) and the “Flour Sand Beach” which is made up of coral. The landscape covers the coastline from the Enderby islet to Post Office Bay, as well as Cerro Pajas, the pool of flamingos and wide forest of Palo Santo.
Bird lovers will be in a flap over Suarez Point on Española Island with its huge population of boobies, albatrosses and rare mockingbirds. You’ll find a large colony of sea lions at Gardner Bay. Located on the north-eastern coast of Hood, we find Gardner Bay. It provides an excellent beach for relaxing, swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, and the opportunity to observe sea lions. Here we can also observe sharks in the crystal clear ocean waters.
Santiago is the fourth largest island in the archipelago (following Isabela, Fernandina and Santa Cruz). Along with some of the large western volcanoes of Isabela and Fernandina, Santiago is also volcanically active, with many young flows and cones to be seen, particularly along the south, west, and east coasts. These may even be seen from the summit of Darwin Volcano and from space. A number of historic eruptions have been reported over the last 2 centuries. Santiago actually consists of two coalesced volcanoes: a typical shield volcano on the northwest end and a low, linear fissure volcano on the southeast end.
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