Planning on visiting the Galapagos Islands? We’ve got you covered with this considered list of the best places to visit on the Galapagos Islands! Of course, there are so many more things to see and do beyond this guide, but we wanted to offer a few highlights to help you begin planning your dream Galapagos trip. We also offer Galapagos land tours and luxury Galapagos cruises, if that’s the way you prefer to travel! Enjoy the beautiful sandy beaches of the island of Santa Cruz! Take a look at the huge albatrosses on the rocky shores of Española Island. Hike near the Sierra Negra volcano edge and dive into the clear waters of the Puerto Villamil tunnels. Keep reading to discover more about the Galapagos Islands!
The Enchanting Islands are waiting for you, go and explore!
Tortuga Bay is located southwest of the tourist town of Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz. The majority of visitors consider this place one of the most beautiful beaches in the Galapagos. There are 2 ways to arrive at this site, either by the sea via sea taxis that part from the passenger’s pier of Puerto Ayora or the land through a path of about 2 kilometers connected to the beach by foot only.
The Charles Darwin Research Station is located in Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz. An international non-profit organization dedicated to scientific research. The Galapagos Islands is home to the famous Galapagos Tortoise, which fully grown can weigh up to 500 pounds and reach 6 feet in length. During your visit to the Research Station, you will get to see tortoises at all stages of growth from unhatched eggs to full-grown adults.
Kicker Rock is the remains of a volcanic cone that has been eroded by the sea. Above the water, the monolithic rock formation towers over 500 feet above the Pacific Ocean and is home to several Tropicbirds, Blue-footed Boobies, and Frigate birds. When viewed from the south the formation looks like a Sleeping Lion, hence the Spanish name Leon Dormido, while from the other side it looks more like a boot, hence the English name Kicker Rock. It is known as one of the best spots for snorkeling.
The Sierra Negra volcano is one of five volcanoes on the island of Isabela and boasts the second-largest volcanic caldera in the world. This volcano is one of the most active in the Galapagos, with the last eruption in 2005, you will have the opportunity to explore thermal vents and other fascinating geologic features in this highly active geothermal area.
Pinnacle is a volcanic islet on the island of Bartolome. It is one of the “younger” islands in the Galápagos archipelago, with a total land area of just 1.2 square kilometers (0.5 square miles), this island offers some of the most beautiful landscapes in the archipelago. The island consists of an extinct volcano and a variety of red, orange, green, and glistening black volcanic formations. It has two visitor sites. At the first one, visitors can swim and snorkel around Pinnacle Rock; the underwater world is really impressive. The bay is also an excellent place to go swimming. The twin bays are separated by a narrow isthmus.
This is the most spectacular site for snorkeling on Isabela Island. The water is shallow, calm, and very clear. A series of lava flows have produced unique geological formations, a series of arcs and tunnels underneath and above the water; a real habitat for many local Galapagos Species. The best time to visit the tunnels is between January and May.
North Seymour is a small island near Baltra Island, it was formed by the uplift of a submarine lava formation. The whole island is covered with low, bushy vegetation. This small island is one of the most important fishing sites for Marine Birds, for this reason, the island is visited by many travelers and ornithologists to observe the spectacular and diverse amount of birds of the Galapagos, here you can watch frigate birds, blue-footed boobies, sea lions, marine iguanas, swallow-tailed gulls.
Las Grietas means “the crevasses,” a pretty name for one of the Galápagos Islands’ most enchanting locations, this is a place to swim in cool ocean water between two tall cliffs, where the earth has opened like a “crack” or “crevasse”. Las Grietas is very close to Puerto Ayora and it takes a few hours to visit so can easily be combined with other activities on the same day.
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Gulliver Expeditions is a tour operator that offers unique Ecuador and Peru tours. Specialized in adventure travel such as climbing, mountain biking and horseback riding. We offer both pre-planned packages as well as tailor-made tours that can include the Amazon rainforest, once-in-a-lifetime Galapagos cruises and expeditions to Machu Picchu.
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