The Galápagos Islands are famed throughout the world for their wildlife: the giant tortoises, nesting albatrosses, flirting frigate birds, comic boobies, wrinkly iguanas and frolicking sea-lions among so many species.
1,000km off the South American coast, the archipelago was, and continues to be, formed from the peaks of gigantic submarine volcanoes which have never been part of the mainland. Over many millennia, animals and plants came to adapt to this special environment, and to develop differently from their continental ancestors. The fearlessness of this unthreatened wildlife lets us observe them right up close, a unique experience in the natural world.
The experience of exploring the unique archipelago rarely disappoints: they really are Enchanted Isles. The local population live in the two main towns, Puerto Ayora on Santa Cruz Island and Puerto Baquerizo Moreno on San Cristóbal. There are two airports: most visitors fly in from the mainland and board one of a large choice of vessels to cruise around the islands, but it is also possible to enjoy a hotel-based visit with adventure activities thrown in.