Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Everyone has heard of the Galapagos Islands. In October 2016, I had the awesome privilege of exploring these islands and the waters that surround them. Boy, was I in for a treat! The islands do not disappoint with their many natural wonders. Join me on a photo tour through the Galapagos Islands.
The islands, located 600 miles (1000 kilometers) off the coast of Ecuador, are famous for offering incredible experiences with the wild. At one point, the islands served as a stopping place for pirates sailing in the Pacific Ocean but today they are protected by the government of Ecuador. Species found on these islands are often endangered and endemic but you can still get fairly close to them.
Visitors hope to have a brush with nature.
When you visit the Galapagos, you do so knowing that you’re in for a pretty immersive nature experience. Hiking, snorkeling, swimming, and trekking are all part of the experience. You’re guaranteed to meet some of the island’s animal residents up close and personal. But don’t worry…there is always time to relax on a secluded beach. Just be prepared for curious local residents who might wander up to you.
It’s an eclectic and unique mix of wildlife and topography.
The Galapagos Islands play home to a diverse group of animals ranging from reptiles to fish to birds to mammals. Everywhere you turn, you are likely to see a creature of some sort. Not only that, the landscapes change drastically from mangrove forests to coral reefs to volcanic rock-scapes, to open fields filled with trees.
In total, I spent 5 days sailing from island to island and exploring what each had to offer. Our guide was fantastically knowledgeable about the history of the islands and their flora and fauna. Please enjoy this glimpse into life on the islands from my perspective.
Birds Birds & More Birds
Birds are one of the most abundant species on the islands. They are literally everywhere and they’re fascinating to watch in their natural habitat. From Lava Gulls, Mockingbirds, frigits, pigeons, doves, and Darwin Finches…you’re sure to find a favorite. I fell in love with the Blue-footed Boobies and the Albatross.
You will walk…and often.
The only way to explore most the islands is by foot. That means you’ll do quite a bit of hiking but don’t worry, most the hikes are fairly easy. Trekking across the islands is also the only way to meet the local wildlife population. The views are incredible and you feel like you’re in another world.
You’ll also encounter a number of other creatures outside the bird family. Should you decide to snorkel, you might encounter parrot fish, eagle rays, sea turtles, trumpet fish, and even sea lions. Walking about the islands, you’re likely to stumble into land iguanas, large insects, sea iguanas, and yes…sea lions. It’s a veritable safari in the Pacific.
So what do you think? Does this inspire you to get to the Galapagos? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
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