About the Galapagos Islands
Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
The Galapagos Islands archipelago, located 1,000 km from mainland Ecuador, is comprised of 13 large islands, 6 small and over 40 islands of volcanic origin. It has 14 major islands, -4 of which are inhabited San Cristobal, Santa Cruz, Isabela, Floreana.
The temperature ranges between 18 and 22 degrees Celsius. This extraordinary natural laboratory is a fusion of unique species of fauna and flora with a unique natural values in the world.
UNESCO declared the Galapagos a Natural Heritage of Humanity and later, it was designated a Biosphere Reserve. Scientific studies of Charles Darwin and Teodoro Wolf gave him more fame to the region.
Giant tortoises, marine iguanas and land ones, next to the lava lizards, reptiles are the most famous family. Reptiles of the Galapagos, half the bird species, 32% of plants, 25% of fish as well as a number of invertebrates are endemic and are exclusively in this natural sanctuary.
The Galapagos birds, represented by more than 13 different species of finches, penguins, cormorants, boobies, hawks, sparrows, albatrosses and flamingos, among others, are samples of birds of various origins that has occurred in the archipelago. Sea lions and dolphins are part of the many attractions of Galapagos. The Charles Darwin Research Station is located on Santa Cruz Island.
The Galapagos ecosystems
GALAPAGOS ISLANDS, ECUADOR
The Galapagos Islands and Marine Reserve contains a unique combination of ecosystem land and ocean, each with many different habitats and communities.
The Galapagos are located at the point where ocean currents are important, and the islands include the intersections between several tectonic plates in motion..The combination of these circumstances makes this a unique venue on the planet.
Galapagos archipelago is also the best preserved tropical ocean in the world. The species have adapted successfully to a barren, inhospitable landscape often occupy a unique niche in that ecosystem, and have little competition for food, water and space.
The fact that a very small area of land and sea that surrounds it, as is the Galapagos archipelago, contains an incredible variety of oceanographic and climate extremes, plants, animals and ecosystems so unique, besides being in an almost largely unchanged from its surface makes the islands have the same magical appeal Antarctica, but the land area of Galapagos is infinitesimally small in comparison.Galapagos is a gem very small but very valuable in the crown of biodiversity.
Isabela Galapagos Islands atracctions
GALAPAGOS ISLANDS, ECUADOR
Wetlands Area in Isabela Galapagos
It is a biologically diverse mangrove and wildlife that you visit on a pleasant walk along the trails built between helios, observing flamingos, sideburns, coots, finches, lizards, mockingbirds and vegetation of the Galapagos.
The wetland areas on Isabela Island are extensive as coverage during the visit takes place in two hikings. The first is located near the town and is destined for the Galapagos Breeding Center in captivity.
The second hiking is a combined visit and comes to the Wall of Tears. "During this visit will cover the following sites:
Sightseeing point Los Tunos
From the edge of a collapse of lava have a spectacular view of the green pool, surrounded by mangroves and an ancient forest of huge candelabra cactus.
Poza de los Diablos
The name of this well is because it lives and grows edible fish called "devil" with an exquisite flavor. This place is the habitat for flamingos, whiskers, and coots.
Small white sand beach with lava rock where seabirds resting after feeding.
Small sandy beach composed of small shells that reaches a small shallow lake. Nearby is a rocky coast where you are resting and nesting marine iguanas.
Poza Escondida Estero
The hidden pool is located across the dry forest typical of the Galapagos, with cactus and mesquite, this place is magic has a direct connection with the sea.
The inlet has a unique characteristic, it is a spring of fresh water out of the earth and form a river at low tide, leading to a sandy bay in front of a lava cliff where seabirds roost.
Wall of Tears
Historic site during the years 1946 to 1959 there was a penal colony on the island where the convicts paid their punishment, they were forced to build a wall with enormous blocks of lava brought from various parts of the island. The building usually causes surprise and admiration visitors by its dimensions (150 feet long, 5-thick and 8 high) and because it is the silent symbol of a regime of torture that was introduced at that time.
Giant Tortoise Breeding
This center in captivity are reproducing populations of 5 species of tortoises from Isabela. Here you can learn about the aging process and captive breeding of tortoises and the repatriation process.
Islet of Dyer
Within walking distance of Puerto Villamil is the small island The Tintoreras: This island is characterized by a marine channel where Dyer entering the white-fin sharks to rest, here can be easily seen from a viewpoint.
Most of the trail has a beautiful young volcanic landscape, except for two white sand beaches and a black stone in them are colonies of sea lions and marine iguanas nesting.
It is a bay with shallow and clear water allowing you to observe the fascinating marine life, you can swim with sea lions and penguins. In the building there is a place for tourists to take a swim and practice snorkeling.
Visitors Sites in the Upper Isabela Galapagos Islands
Mirador del Mango
Agricultural area near the island, is this viewpoint, from atop the highest mountain you have a wonderful view of the entire south side of the island., Its nearby islets and even other islands such as Floreana and Santa Cruz.
Sierra Negra volcano
Regarded as the oldest of the volcanoes, the caldera of this volcano is 10 km in diameter and is the second largest in the world, the panoramic view is one of the most beautiful experiences for visitors. Sierra Negra is visited by the leading volcanologists in the world.
Viewpoint with an amazing view, where a path takes you to an unforgettable experience, go through a humid pampas to a lava field similar to the lunar landscape and in the end you'll see streams of lava petrified of different textures and colors you can also get closer to the vents or craters, integral parts of this system fully active volcanoes.
This is another place to observe the caldera of the volcano Sierra Negra.
This volcanic formation was reached after a long ride, is located within the Sierra Negra volcano, so it must descend through a walk of several minutes. Indoors you can see a system where sulfur gas vent has been crystallized into large walls of sulfur.
Day trips by Sea and Yacht
It is 15 km away from Puerto Villamil is the island Tortuga, an ancient volcanic caldera is no activity, of which only half remains above water. It is one of the main nesting sites of sea birds in Galapagos. From the boat you can see plenty of frigates, boobies, gulls and tropical birds, among others. Not allowed down to not interrupt the process of nesting and breeding birds. This is an excellent place for diving.
ISLET FOUR BROTHERS
After a boat trip about an hour from Puerto Villamil is reached four brothers, here hundreds of nesting seabirds, is ideal for diving, landing is not permitted in being a marine bird sanctuary cycle.
This activity is carried out under the supervision of certified guide by the National Park Service, like all marine basins.
It comes after about 90 minutes to navigate the tunnels is one of the most splendid sites for snorkeling in its calm waters, clear and shallow. This is a unique for its spectacular geological formations, and lava flows have formed a lot of arches and tunnels both on and off the water, where sheltering several species of marine fauna of the Galapagos.
On arrival there are certain low that usually have strong waves mainly from June to December so it is not always feasible to enter the place, the best time to visit is between January and May.
Activities in Isabela Galapagos Island:
GALAPAGOS ISLANDS, ECUADOR
Galapagos Ttrekking and Horse Riding
During this activity we will necessarily be a vehicle to the top of the island called The Priest, at this site assemble the horses, 20 minutes later it borders the crater of Sierra Negra (the second largest crater in the world) and up to a temporary resting place for walking down to Chico Volcano where we will observe the active craters (fumaroles) and young lava-like moonscape.
Camping, Hiking and Ride In Galapagos
This activity begins with an ascent vehicle to the rural area of Isabela Island (20 miles) from this site will continue the trip on horseback into the crater rim of Sierra Negra (the second largest in the world), after approximately two-hour journey, we arrived at the place where camping equipment installed at the edge of the crater of Sierra Negra.
This volcano is attractive because the active craters are covered with sulfur, plus visitors can approach the crater and take hands sulfur. If passengers are tired descend the volcano the next day.
Biking and Trekking Through The Wetlands.
We left the hotel and started a walk along the trails were built between the wetland system (flora and fauna associated with marine life) and ponds near the ocean.
During the 20-30 minute walk will see flamingos, sideburns, coots, real wombs, mockingbirds, finches, and two plant species characteristics of the area: Jelí and manzanillo.
The destination of this walk is the Center for captive breeding in freshwater, where you will receive a lecture about the different species of tortoises that inhabit the islands.
A second option to visit the wetland system is the walk to the Wall of Tears (relic built by convicts in the 50s).
During the journey on foot, by bicycle or vehicle, we climb to the Mirador de la Orchilla, pass by El Estero, the Poza Escondida, Poza Redonda, Tunnel del Estero, Playa del Amor, Pozas Verdes and Poza de los Diablos. Each place has an interesting feature related to the flora and fauna of the Galapagos or the history of Isabela Island, unique in the world.'s Visit here last between 1 and 3 hours depending on the medium we use.
Snorkeling and Monitoring OF Marine Fauna.
For this activity we will take a fast boat and sail 10 minutes until the shark Islet. During a short hike we will look at sharks (shark species) in a cave where lie these sharks. On the way we found many marine iguanas, zayapas (marine crabs) blue-footed boobies, pelicans and go to a place nearby where penguins live. Al final de la caminata llegaremos al lugar donde descansan los lobos marinos. At the end of the walk we reached the place where sea lions rest.
This activity can be extended with a visit to Turtle Islet plenty to see nesting seabirds. This trip lasts an additional 40 minutes and the site may not be landed.
This activity will conclude with a session of snorkelling to see the unique marine life of Galapagos.
Galapagos Scuba Diving,and snorkelling
Diving in Galapagos may become unique and exciting experience. But diving in Turtle Island, Four Brothers or snorkelling in the tunnels of Isabela Island is simply an unusual experience. To approach to schools of fish, sea turtles, sharks, stingrays, moray eels in the middle of crystal clear water will become an activity unrepeatable.
After entering a set of tunnels a hundred square meters of space to see lobsters, lobster unique endemic worldwide, stingrays, abundant species of fish and marine animals, confirming that the Galapagos is the best dive site in the world.
To make your stay in the Isabela you make the most, we suggest that you bring with you certain accessories and products:
• Cap or hat
• Sunscreen or sunblock
• Insect repellent, especially from January to May
• Video or Photo Camera
• Slippers and shoes for walking
• If you think riding jeans and closed shoes
• Coats Lightweight, mainly from June to December
• Sweater breaks wind and motion sickness pills (travel at sea)
Cash in Isabela as no credit cards accepted
FLORA AND FAUNA
GALAPAGOS ISLANDS, ECUADOR
Galapagos Islands Flora
In the dry zone is observed between bare rocks or thorny plants stunted small flowers. Es la zona de los cactus, de los palos santos, algarrobos y líquenes. This is the area of the cactus, sticks of saints, carob and lichens.
In the humid low growing ferns and other assorted large evergreen (quacks, cat claws, knees, horses, etc.).. En la zona húmeda alta crecen el guayabillo, pasiflora, cafetillo, musgos, hongos, huicundos. In the humid high grow the guayabillo, passionflower, cafetillo, mosses, fungi, huicundos.
Citrus have been planted develop as exuberant, as well as vegetables, maize and potato. The interesting thing is that each island has its own endemic plants, as well as her own wildlife. The soils are favorable to agriculture are small (10% of the total area).
Galapagos Animals not native ones
A curious phenomenon is the presence in the Galapagos Islands sea lions and penguins that different species of the sea ice. Perhaps their presence is due to the cold Humboldt Current. On Genovesa Island fur seals are the only ones who are living in such tropical water. Probably came dragged by the Humboldt Current.
Galapagos Most important animals
The Galapagos Islands are considered the world's greatest natural laboratory.. Before Darwin, the theory of immunity of the species was not questioned. The theory of evolution Darwin Darwin changed the scientific landscape studied some island species, mainly finches and tortoises, their studies found that these species had evolved in different ways in each island.
The giant tortoises and freshwater turtles belong to the oldest group of reptiles and zoologists have been classified in the subspecies that fall into three groups: the sea turtles, freshwater or semi-aquatic and terrestrial turtles
The tortoises have been nearly exterminated by hunting done in the past by sailors who sailed on whaling ships.
In the building of the Darwin Station marks the captive breeding program of the giant tortoise for which existing species exploited in the Spanish island.
These animals do not stop their growth from birth until they die. His life is long and is considered to be living to 200 years. Tiene gran resistencia a la falta de agua y de comida. It has high resistance to lack of food and water. They can do without food until the time of year.
Galapagos is home to numerous genera and species of terrestrial and marine birds.
Millions of years ago, migrating birds arrived on the islands and the adaptive processes changed the species as distinct from those of the continent. Attention is drawn to pink flamingos that are certainly the most beautiful birds that arrived on the islands.
Other birds of interest are the real and the frigate frigate common, masked boobies, penguins, albatross and Darwin's finches.
The iguanas are interesting reptile species in the Galapagos Islands. They are of two kinds: the land and sea, each with different characteristics. The first are dark, These iguanas resting on the lava rocks and kept in complete immobility. His back is a ridge with peaks and Teodoro Wolf found that the marine iguana is the only remaining representative of marine dinosaurs that populated the planet remote ages., Feed on seaweed. The land iguana is dark yellow, feeds on cactus leaves and moyu lignum. Generally live in arid parts of the islands.