"Galapagos" Galápagos Islands by elsadran
Galápagos Islands Travel Guide: 1,142 reviews and 5,094 photos
The islands consist of 13 major ones, 17 small ones and about 40 rocks. 5 of them are inhabited nowadays, with the most devoloped ones being Santa Cruz and San Cristobal. Wildlife is unique and fearless. You can be swimming with the sealions performing their graceful dance around you. I remember I was shouting like a small child overjoyed with hapiness when it happened to me. You can look into the lovely eyes of a sea lion, lying nonchalantly on the shore. And you should walk carefully to avoid stepping on a marine iguana, busking in the sun, absolutely still.
The islands were discovered by the Spanish in 1535. They were uninhabited then. For years they were used as terrible undesired places of exile and punishment. In 1835 Ecuador claimed sovereignty over them. Three years later Charles Darwin charmed by their unique natural qualities made his research and studies to develop his theory of evolution. Many offers of other nations to get them for military purposes for their great strategical location, were rejected by Ecuador. During World War II the Americans established a military base in Baltra, which has been used as an airport since the end of the world.
There are two airports now, one on Baltra from where you can take the ferry and go to Santa Cruz, Puerto Ayora. This is the main population center where there is everything necessary for your stay. The other one is on San Cristobal island, in Puerto Baquerizo Moreno. Using these two as a base you can explore many islands taking regular boats or private ones. Depending on how much you want to see and how dedicated a natural lover you are you need 1 or 2 weeks to do justice to the natural wonder of Galapagos.
The best time to come is March and April because the weather is calm and it is the nesting season.
As cute as the animals might be and as peaceful and fearless they might look don't come too close. One reason is that... more travel advice
Santiago is the fourth largest island and has the most beautiful coastline of all. Port Egas was once inhabited but not... more travel advice
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