Visting the Galapagos Islands is a must for most people looking for Ecuador Tours. The Galapagos, which are part of Ecuador, sit in the Pacific Ocean about 1000 km (620 miles) west of South America
Because the islands were never connected to the mainland,
many species of plants and animals are unique to the Galapagos. In
1835, the young naturalist Charles Darwin, arrived on the islands. His
collections from the Galapagos became central to his theory of how
species evolve. Today, traveling in the Galapagos with kids, everyone
in the family will be awed and amazed by nature.
The origin of the Galapagos Islands are from lava
eruptions that came from the bottom of the ocean and rose as much as
2600 feet above sea level. Some of the younger islands still have
active volcanoes. Different characters such as isolation, climate,
altitude and texture of the land on the islands, have made their
distinct vegetation and animal life materialize.
The islands straddle
the equator in a chain of 13 large island and many smaller ones. The
main islands are: Fernandina, Isabela, Santiago, Santa Cruz, Floreana,
Española, San Cristobal, Genovesa, Santa Fe, Marchena, Pinta, Rabida
Each island is completely different - from large
mountainous peaks shrouded in mist and forest to mere reefs of
submerged rock and coral. Their most famous visitor was Charles Darwin
in 1835, to whom they were "eminently curious''. It was his visit here
that helped inspire his theories on evolution. Though low in species
numbers, a high proportion are unique to the archipelago. They have
been dubbed "a living laboratory of evolution".
The ocean currents largely determine Galapagos
Islands' weather. Normally from June - December, there is a cold
current rising from the south which creates a cool moist fog called a
garua close to the ocean making the climate rather cool and dry. In
December, the wind has less force; the ocean is calm and the currents
change, surrounding the islands in the warm Panama Current from the
These currents create a definable weather pattern of hot sunny
mornings followed by clouds and occasional showers in the afternoons.
Needless to say, this is usually the favorite time to visit. In other
words: June - December cool, cloudy and dry season. December - June,
warm, sunny and rainy season.
Today the Galapagos Islands are a World Heritage
Site and they were declared a national park in 1959. Because the
uninhabited islands are far apart, a boat cruise of some sort is
needed in order to see the best sites. The numbers of tourists are
restricted by the national park authorities. It is advisable to book
as far ahead as possible, though we have access to a variety of cruise
options. Four islands have human populations, and hotel based options
are possible. continues...