Reasons to Visit
the Galapagos Islands
Charles Darwin arrived in Galapagos in 1835. Here he found a remarkable population of plants, birds and reptiles that had developed in isolation from the mainland, but also differed on almost identical neighbouring islands. These characteristics he could only explain by a gradual transformation of the various species and lead to the publication of his famous “Origin of the Species”.
Having no natural predators for centuries, the wildlife of the Galapagos Islands has become remarkably fearless. This has continued with the introduction of humans allowing visitors to come face to face with the animals. It's quite common for visitors to have to make way for a sealion moving along the beach or be forced away from the nesting site of a blue-footed booby!
Galapagos’ most famous resident, Lonesome George is the last remaining sub-species of the Pinta Giant Tortoise - almost wiped to extinction by whalers in the 1900’s. Now currently residing in the Charles Darwin Research Station, researchers are trying to find a suitable mate and a sizeable reward is on offer for anyone who can do so.
The Galapagos’ most iconic site, Pinnacle Rock is an eroded tuff cone protruding form the side of Bartolome Island. This lunar landscape, edged by a white sandy beach, is teaming with sealions and offers clear blue water and stunning a backdrop - one of the highlights of a trip to Galapagos.
Galapagos is often referred to as the 'Land of Fire'. The western most islands are made up of active volcanoes and volatile activity is common place. When an eruption takes place, cruise vessels often divert their itinerary to enable passengers to get close to lava flows.
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The Galapagos Islands
Watch out for the brightly-coloured Sally lightfoot crab.
With so many different islands and so much unique wildlife to explore, it's unlikely that you'll experience the same day twice. Use this guide to discover what you might expect to see and do on a typical day in the Galapagos.
Find out about planning a first time trip to the Galapagos Islands. Embark on a luxury Galapagos cruise to explore the dramatic landscapes and fearless wildlife of this beautiful archipelago.
Home to a large and unique variety of bird, marine and animal species, the Galapagos Islands offer visitors the chance to experience a wildlife encounter unlike any other on the planet.
Built exclusively for Galapagos cruising, the Santa Cruz is an excellent option for those looking for optimum service on board a larger vessel with additional stability.
Named after the famous HMS Beagle that Charles Darwin sailed on to the Galapagos, the atmosphere on the Beagle is one of casual comfort and relaxation.
From the tiny finches that influenced Darwin to the giant tortoises that gave the islands their name, from the huge variety of marine life to the charming mating rituals of the frigates and boobies, the Galapagos are simply a joy - and our specialists know them very, very well.
11 Days from £4,500pp
The perfect compromise for those not wanting to spend their entire trip on a boat. Island hopping gets visitors to the outer islands and best wildlife sites, staying in comfortable lodges, whilst spending the majority of time on terra-firma.
11 Days from £4,510pp
Stay in a comfortable Galapagos hotel with comprehensive day trips to nearby islands, walking tours, snorkelling and optional mountain biking and diving excursions. Ideal for those who prefer not to spend nights sleeping on a boat.
11 Days from £4,520pp
Take a cruise around the unique Galapagos Islands with two nights in Quito beforehand.
15 hours (Quito via Madrid, Amsterdam or the USA)
Read first-hand tips and advice from our travel specialists.
Start planning your tailor-made holiday to the Galapagos Islands by contacting one of our specialists...
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Further reading:When to GoHighlightsItinerary IdeasGalapagos CruisesThings to DoAccommodationAbout The Galapagos IslandsCountry Guides
Other countries in South America:ArgentinaBoliviaBrazilChileColombiaEcuadorGuyanaParaguayPeruThe Falkland IslandsUruguayVenezuela
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