Discovered by chance in 1535, this remote archipelago was named Las Encantadas (the Enchanted Isles) by passing Spanish seafarers because the mists made the islands appear and disappear as if by magic. And it seems, to this day, the Galápagos Islands have not lost their enchantment.
The Galapagos Islands are situated in the Pacific Ocean, some 1000 km from the South American continent.
They have been called a ‘living museum and showcase of evolution’ and are famous for their ‘unusual animals’ such as the giant tortoise, the blue-footed booby, the waved albatross, the land and the marine iguanas, the frigate bird and Darwin’s finches to name but a few.
The best way to visit the Galapagos is by boat and one can do a 3, 4 or 7 nights’ cruise, on board a yacht or a bigger vessel, accommodating anything from just 12 to around 90 passengers.
Groups allowed onto each island are limited to 16 people. You stop off at the various islands (the route depends on the length of your trip and the type of boat you’re on), varying between dry and wet landings (ie you can get straight to the island with dry feet or you have to walk a bit through the water onto the beach), and each one is special in terms of the amazing landscapes and the astonishing animals.
You really can swim with sea lions, float next to a penguin, watch the clownish behaviour of the blue-footed booby when courting, watch the male frigatebird inflate the red skin hanging under its neck into a football sized balloon to attract females and feel like you’ve stepped back in time when surrounded by marine iguanas that look like little dragons with their spiny backs and scaly skin.
The most extraordinary thing is that these animals don’t seem to mind you wandering right amongst them, so getting up close is easy!
David Attenborough described the Galapagos as ‘the most astonishing place on earth’, surely this endorsement is enough to make anyone want to go!
If you want an ‘out of this world experience’, look at visiting the Galapagos sooner rather than later, to ensure that it is as magical as when David Attenborough and myself experienced it!
Discover the glorious World of the Galapagos Islands with World Odyssey – call us on 01905 731373 or email firstname.lastname@example.org