Galapagos Travel Guide, Articles & News
No matter how you explore the Galapagos Islands - by land or by sea - you are guaranteed an excellent vacation, full of exciting activities, natural exploration, and the flora & fauna that have earned the Galapagos its identity as a natural laboratory of evolution.
Outward bound for 2018 are five new luxury-class yachts and one midrange boat are this year and two luxury yachts for 2019.
Since the total number of boats cruising the Galapagos is strictly controlled by the Galapagos National Park, seven older and lower priced vessels will be retired from service.
The Galapagos Islands are best experienced on a cruise, and there are plenty of boats, itineraries, and promotions to suit any budget. All Galapagos cruises focus primarily on exploring the natural and historical wonders of the Islands, so even budget cruises guarantee travelers an unforgettable experience.
If the Galapagos Islands are your destination, then you must first pass through either Quito or Guayaquil on Ecuador's mainland. It's always a good idea to arrive a day or two before your flight to Galapagos just to be safe, so take that time to explore mainland Ecuador before your Galapagos adventure.
Once you've chosen to make your Galapagos adventure a cruise, the next task is deciding on a boat. There are over one hundred options to choose, from motor sailers to catamarans to bigger ships and even small yachts.
Welcome to the oldest and second most populated island of the Galapagos, San Cristobal. This island is the furthest island from the volcanic hotspot that has produced the Galapagos Islands, indicating its relatively old geological age. It is also home to an extremely unique natural environment, unlike any other in the Galapagos Islands.
As of March 21, 2016, a new marine sanctuary has been established in the Galapagos Islands. In response to high levels of legal and illegal fishing operations and other resource exploitation, Ecuadorian president Rafael Correa signed an executive order to designate the area surrounding Wolf and Darwin Islands as a protected area.
Puerto Ayora is on the island of Santa Cruz, the most central island in the Galapagos both geographically and culturally. Puerto Ayora is the biggest town in the Galapagos Islands and has everything you could hope for – a wide variety of stores for any last-minute purchases, excellent restaurants, bars, clubs, and even karaoke.
Those considering staying in the Galapagos either before or after their cruise will be rewarded with a splendid selection of world class ecologically-focused luxury hotels and resorts to choose from.
Get tips on how plan and make the most out of your diving trip to the Galapagos Islands. If you are an experienced diver looking for a bold new adventure into some of the most vibrant marine utopias nature has to offer, then look no further than the Galapagos Islands.
For many, a trip to the Galapagos comes only once in a lifetime, so make sure that you take advantage of your time here and consider extending your stay before or after your cruise.
Be sure you have the most positive impact possible when visiting the pristine Galapagos Islands and Galapagos National Park. The best way to practice responsible travel in the Galapagos is by planning your trip with an eco-conscious tour provider.
There’s no doubt that the Galapagos Islands are one of the most enchanting places for a diver to witness the rainbow of marine life that this unique, volcanically formed ecosystem supports. And the absolute best way to experience diving is by reserving your spot on one of the exclusive liveaboard diving cruise.
With all of the excitement and enthusiasm for your Galapagos vacation, don’t forget that mainland Ecuador is worth planning a couple of days of exploring. Quito is the country’s capital and second-largest city, right behind Guayaquil.
Figuring out a travel budget is an important step. Columbus Travel, on of the most trusted travel agencies in Ecuador, is here to help guide you through this planning process so that you don't leave any details out.
The 15-day cruise option allows you to see the whole Galapagos archipelago and the only one that will fully acquaint you with each of its regions. The Galapagos, though a small geographic region, have very distinct zones in each corner of the Islands.
Most experts believe that an 8-day cruise is the best balance of time on the islands for the money. While shorter cruises are extremely limited in what you get to see, many people feel that two-week cruises are expensive, long, and even exhausting.
While a 5-day cruise is still a relatively short expedition, you will at least be able to experience several visitor sites and most of the cruise activities. The 5-day option is your best balance for those who want to see a lot but are still trying to manage their budget prudently.
If you are traveling children, a 4 or 5 day expedition is usually plenty for parents who decide to bring the kids along. For older couples, cruises can be an amazing way to share retirement; however, long cruises might be more difficult.
This list features the best spots to snorkel in the Galapagos Islands and what you can anticipate finding in each one. For those lucky enough to visit all corners of the Galapagos, you will see completely different marine ecosystems around each island.
On the fragile Galapagos ecosystems El Niño occurrence is devastating. For example, the most recent strong events of 1982-83 and 1997-98 were followed by decimation of 77% and 65% of the penguin population, respectively.
With about 80 cruise boats simultaneously sailing the Galapagos, it can be overwhelming finding the best boat for your needs at the best price possible. These tips by Columbus Travel should help you choosing a cruise and looking for the best deal.
Packing advice and tips before your trip to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands. Even though planning your vacation to Ecuador or the Galapagos Islands might seem like preparing for a trip to Paradise, there's still a lot to think about.
A trip to the Galapagos Islands is no ordinary vacation. There are two options for a Galapagos trip: Cruises and land-based tours. Some people like to combine both these to get the most out of their island experience.
There's no one “best” way to visit the Galapagos Islands, but there are plenty of tricks for building the ideal Galapagos trip for your needs and interests. There are also strategies you can use to get a good deal.
In 2015 a rewakening of the giant Cotopaxi volcano was seen. Learn everything that you need to know about planning your trip to nearby Quito and tips on how to get even closer while remaining safe.
With the 2015 El Niño in full force, the Galapagos Penguin fights to survive a major disruption in its food source. Natural selection rears its devistating impact on one of the Galapagos' most popular species.
Researchers have confirmed the discovery of a new species of giant Galapagos tortoise. An isolated group of tortoises were previously thought to belong to other species on the same island.
Island hopping in the Galapagos Islands, also known as land-based tours, is the only other way to see the islands if you are not on a cruise. Cruises used to be the only way to visit the archipelago, but now travelers can base their excursions from a hotel on one of the four main islands to which they will return every night.
Although the Galapagos Islands host some of the most luxurious cruises and nature lodges, it's also a great destination for those looking to explore the best nature has to offer on a budget. The best way to balance your budget is to plan ahead. A little bit of forward thinking and investigation before your trip can save you a bunch of money.
When is the best time to go to the Galapagos? There is no best time really. Any time is great to visit, but it's helpful to know the basics of Galapagos' climate and other variables such as wildlife activities and tourist high and low seasons in order to pick just the right time of year that will feature the things you wish to see and do.
In January, the warm season is now in its full splendor. Mornings tend to have sunny blue skies, and after the temperatures rise, it's common to have afternoon showers. The guarua fog that was prevelant the past several months is almost nowhere to be seen.
Any time is a great time to visit the Galapagos Islands but if you're looking for a break from the winter blues in the northern hemisphere, sunny Galapagos in February is hard to beat.
March is a great time to visit the Galapagos if you like sunny days and warmer waters. One of the most exciting events is the first group of Waved Albatrosses arriving to mate and nest on Española Island.
Rains begin to subside and the temperature around the islands finally begins to cool off while the water remains warm. Tourist activity begins to gain traction as schools and classes come to an end for summer break. Past mid-May it gets difficult to find last minute deals.
Though any month is excellent for visiting Galapagos, many consider the month of June to offer the best weather of the year because of its balance between cooler temperatures and relatively clear sunny skies. It is highly recommended to reserve months in advance and not count on finding a last minute deal, as most all boats fill up.
Anytime is an excellent time to visit the Galapagos Islands, but July is one of the perferred months because it's the beginning of the cooler Guarua season with relatively clear skies. The disadvantage of July is that there are few available spaces on boats because it's high season. Galapagos land tours are a good option if you didn't reserve a cruise in advance and have been left boatless.
visiting the Galapagos Islands in August is a great way to get to know one of the most beautiful natural paradises of our planet. During August, you can experience a cooler, drier climate during your stay and average water temperatures that reach their lowest points of the year - dropping as low as 64°F (18°C).
During September, the Galapagos Islands experience the lowest annual temperatures, with night temperatures dropping to a brisk 64°F (18°C) and peak temperatures climbing only as high as 75°F (24°).
October is ideal for those looking for cooler temperatures and gorgeous natural landscapes. The lowest annual temperatures fall in August and September, so October is when they start to slowly climb again.
in November temperatures range between 70-79°F (21-26°C) and you will be able to enjoy the rays of the sun during the day sometimes through gaps within the clouds. Come night time, you may need to throw on some long pants and/or a light sweater.
December is a very unique month to visit the Galapagos Islands, as it marks the shift between the cool/dry season and the warm/wet season. Because of this, December is considered one of the best months to visit for good weather.
Mainland Ecuador is worth planning a couple of days of exploring. Quito is the country's capital and second-largest city, right behind Guayaquil. Located in the mountainous Sierra region of Ecuador, it is a reminder of the country's colonial past and natural beauty.
Read all you need to know about flights to and from the Galapagos Islands. We debunk some persistent myths about getting to the islands. The good news is that Columbus Travel and nearly anywhere you buy a tour from will take care of the details for you.
The Galapagos Islands boast 56 native bird species, with 45 of these are endemic, found only in the Islands. Sea birds, shore birds, land birds, and migratory birds, make Galapagos unique in the world of biodiversity, evolution, and conservation.
Seeing Galapagos tortoises is high on the list for most visitors to the Galapagos. These giant reptiles even inspired the name bestowed on the islands - coming from the Spanis word for "saddle" as early visitors mounted them like horses they were so large.These endemic creatures have been intertwined with the islands? identity since the first recorded human visits to the Islands.
Land or cruise? That is the question. And here's the showdown with pluses and minuses of each way that you can visit the Galapagos Islands. Which has the edge? It depends on a few of your priorities.
The April 2014 the movie "The Galapagos Affair, Satan Came to Eden" brought a long-told true story that took place on the Galapagos to the world scene.
Being billed as "Darwin meets Hitchcock", a star-studded cast recreates the melodrama, climaxing in a violent, still unsolved mystery. Check out the real-life characters and the story of The Galapagos Affair.