Ecuador has among its natural attractions a portion of land outside the continent, a volcanic area that over the years has formed some small islands, these landmasses are known worldwide as the enchanted islands or Galapagos.
Located in the Pacific Ocean and 1000 km from the continental coast of Ecuador, this archipelago is made up of 19 islands, these islands have an incomparable treasure due to their endemic flora and fauna.
Officially discovered in 1535 by Fray Tomas de Berlanga, these islands have continued to surprise everyone, since pirates, whalers, scientists and naturalists have attested to their magic.
Since they are proximate to the continent, it was a strategic place for the pirates of the 1700s to hide and plan attacks on the coast of America.
Likewise thanks to its location and currents, this place has been filled with marine life, including whales of all kinds, since time immemorial, making it a very popular place in the 19th century for whalers around the world.
Despite their natural importance, for several centuries these islands were abused and destroyed by pirates, whalers, people who took them in order to live on them, etc., until in 1835 and thanks to the English naturalist Charles Darwin, these islands are beginning to take on the importance they deserve.
The scientist and naturalist, Charles Darwin, traveled around the world in his ship, the HMS Beagle, collecting evidence, species and other information to carry out his study on the theory of evolution, which was published in the book “The origin of species through natural selection"
Thanks to these studies, the islands became famous between scientists around the world, being called the laboratory of evolution, since being so distant by many centuries from the human population, their animals had the possibility of evolving in many ways to be able to survive in the different conditions that each island offers, as an example we have the giant turtles that, depending on where they live, their shells evolved with different shapes, as well as the length of their legs, their mouth and other characteristics.
In 1959, the Republic of Ecuador took the advice of naturalists, biologists and scientists and after closing the penal colony that existed on these islands, declared it a national park. Thus, since 1960 it began to flourish as a tourist destination and was named in 1978 by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site due to its great diversity of underwater wildlife, its geological interest, animal wealth, the great interest that its origin rises and evolution of its flora and fauna. Six years later, it is declared a Biosphere Reserve (1985). In 2007 Unesco declared the Galapagos Islands as a World Heritage Site at environmental risk and was included in the List of World Heritage in danger, but thanks to the conservation efforts and environmental awareness that the islands generate, they were out of this list in 2010.
Today, it is the place with the most influx of tourists in Ecuador and being one of the most famous places in the world specially for divers due to the possibility of seeing an immense amount of fauna in its natural state. There are approximately 70,000 visitors in the Galapagos islands every year. The ecosystem of the islands is extraordinary, and make the tourist feel as if they were in a living museum. However, it is very fragile because even small changes can cause a great alteration in the ecosystem. For that reason, tourists have to pay an entrance fee when they arrive on the islands.
One of the wonders of this island is that the animals are not afraid of man, this is because of their protection status, they do not see man as an enemy, this leads to great encounters with wildlife such as sharing the beach with sea lions, being able to play with them in the water, swimming with sharks, closely observing a large number of tropical fish, penguins, stingrays, sea turtles, among many other unique species in the world that have these islands as a place of procreation.
With an excellent temperature throughout the year, due to being on the equator, they can be visited in any month of the year, considering that, if you want to see a special species, it may have more affluence depending on the month.
During the months of January to May, the climate is hotter and drier with temperatures bordering 20 degrees Celsius, while in the months of June to September it presents a hazier climate, with an occasional type of haze that makes the temperature drop to an average of 22 degrees.
The ways of knowing these islands vary according to the budget for your trip, from luxury cruises that will take you to see the most remote islands, to daily tours that can be made from any of its 3 inhabited islands, Santa Cruz, San Cristóbal and Isabela .
It is advisable to make a reservation in advance since having a limit of people who can visit them, spaces on cruises, hotels and other activities tend to run out soon.
As a suggestion, the months of March to May are usually the best since, being out of the summer season, it is easier and with better prices for any activity to be carried out.
A 100% recommended activity to do on these islands is scuba diving, and if not possible, snorkeling.
Being between 3 marine currents that are found, these islands have an immense amount of marine life, dolphins, whales, sharks, marine iguanas, manta rays, rays of all colors and sizes, reef fish and more, they are the owners of the place, it is not uncommon to be able to swim with hammerhead sharks, turtles and even the rare but beautiful sunfish or mola-mola.
Being on land we can marvel at reptiles, birds, sea lions, blue-footed boobies, cormorants, albatrosses, frigates with red chests, land iguanas of different colors, giant tortoises and more animals to leave us incredible postcards.
Don't wait any longer to discover this laboratory of evolution and life with unique animals and plants on the planet. After a good time riding in Ecuador, the perfect dessert is at least four days in the islands. Thanks to our chain of hotels and tour operators we work with, you can include you this package as part of your whole visit in Ecuador. Please take a look at one of our tours for more information, choose your motorcycle brand, and ride on!