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If wildlife and stunning scenery is your thing, then the Galapagos Islands are the place for you. With everything from tropical beaches to penguins, there are endless things to do here.
Off the coast of Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands welcome over 224,000 visitors each year. This is a small number, but since the island is so remote, it’s hardly surprising.
Many of us know that this is the place that inspired Darwin to write The Origin of Species. But what else do you know about it? Many people don’t know much about this place, and if you’re visiting the Galapagos, you should know more. Let’s dive right in and learn all about it.
1. The Wildlife Is Incredible
If there’s one thing the Galapagos has better than anywhere else, it’s the wildlife. The islands are home to incredible creatures like tortoises, reptiles, and exotic birds.
They roam across the islands and you’ll see them lying on rocks, on the beaches, and wandering the markets. Galapagos cares a lot about their wildlife and eco-systems so make sure you don’t disturb them.
One of the most famous examples of Galapagos wildlife is the Galapagos tortoise. This creature can live for over 100 years and they are enormous. It’s an amazing experience to meet one and you won’t forget it.
2. Snorkeling and Diving Is a Must-Do
If you’re visiting the Galapagos, something you need to do is try your hand snorkeling and diving. The seas here are clear and there’s so much to see under the water.
Snorkel tours are very popular here, so you won’t have a hard time finding one. Most cruises around the Galapagos include snorkel and diving trips around the islands.
It’s important that you go snorkeling with a guide. They are experts who know where to take you and what to show you. What’s more, they keep you safe and make sure you don’t destroy the fragile ecosystem.
3. Santa Cruz Is the Place to Go
There are many islands you need to visit in the Galapagos, and Santa Cruz is one you shouldn’t miss. It’s one of only four inhabited islands in the Galapagos and it has a lot to offer visitors.
It features restaurants, bars, hotels, and clubs along the waterfront you must visit. Make sure to head to the seafront fish market where you’ll see the town at its best.
Santa Cruz is also home to the Charles Darwin Research Station. This center focuses on the preservation of land iguanas and giant tortoises.
4. Make Sure to Try the Coffee and Chocolate
The Galapagos is home to some fantastic cuisine and some of the best seafood dishes in the world. But did you know that they also make some of the best coffee and chocolate in the world?
On islands like Santa Cruz, sugar cane and coffee beans are locally grown. They select their beans with care and you can taste the love in every bite or sip.
Whether you want to savor your treats on the island or take them back as souvenirs, you must try them for yourself.
5. Take a Hike!
Along with the stunning wildlife, the Galapagos has some incredible views. The best way to take it all in is by taking a hike.
One of the best hikes you can do is the six-hour journey up the Sierra Negra volcano. This is the second-largest volcanic crater in the world and is a whole six miles wide.
It’s a tiring journey, but once you reach the top, the view will take your breath away and it’ll all be worth it. Take some photos to capture the experience, but make sure to also live in the moment and take it all in.
6. Visit Isabela Island
Isabela Island isn’t one of the main islands on the Galapagos, but that doesn’t mean you should miss it. While it’s a little further out than the others, it still has a lot of great things to do.
It’s a top snorkeling destination as well as home to lots of penguins and sea lions. There’s a tortoise breeding center where you can learn about them and how we can work to preserve them.
It’s also a great place to come to see the stunning birdlife including wild flamingoes in all their glory. These are only a few of the amazing things you can do on Isabela Island and you can use this guide to find out more.
7. Beach Life Is Unique
Whenever you go to the beach on vacation, you always see throngs of tourists fighting to get a spot. But on the Galapagos Islands, the beaches are a little different.
Here, you won’t see overcrowded beaches or rowdy tourists. The beaches here are beautiful and much more peaceful to visit. You’re visiting the habitats of many wild animals, and you need to respect that.
If you want an exclusive beach experience, the Puerto Chino beach is a literal paradise. With gorgeous blue waters and mangroves for miles, you’ll love every second of it. The serenity and calmness are unique and make for a wonderful experience.
Visiting the Galapagos Is an Amazing Experience
The Galapagos Islands are such a unique part of the world. Compared to other destinations, they aren’t super popular. Since they are hard to get to, people often overlook it, but it’s an incredible destination.
Nowhere else in the world is quite like the Galapagos. If you ever get the chance, visiting the Galapagos is something you should do.
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