Galapagos Islands Travel Guide

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Galapagos Islands Travel Guide

Galapagos Islands Local History

It is believed that in the 15th century, a northern culture from Peru, ruled by the Incas, the Chimu, lived on the islands. The Bishop of Panama, discovered the islands, when his ship was blown off-course, in 1535 and during the 16th and 17th Centuries, the islands were favourite pirate hideouts.

The islands were exploited in the 18th and 19th Centuries for whales, tortoises and seals and these species were almost extinct. Charles Darwin visited the islands in 1835 and studied the fauna and flora and wrote his book' The Origin of Species, based on his findings. In 1959, the Galapagos Islands became Ecuador's first National park and the Charles Darwin Foundation was established to assist in the preservation of the islands. In 1978, the islands were declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Galapagos Islands Attractions

Galapagos Islands Beaches

Gardner Bay, Espanola - Situated on the island that is the most southerly of the archipelago, the beach is an excellent spot for swimming and snorkelling, with sea lions and many different bird species, watching you or joining in with you.

Punta Cormorant, Floreana - The beach is greenish, due to the accumulation of olivine crystal mineral, but the snorkelling is good and there is a white sand beach further along the trail, which is a resting place for green turtles, stingrays and white-tipped reef sharks that swim where the waves crash.

Galapagos Islands Restaurants and Bars

Galapagos Islands Restaurants

Red Mangrove Inn - Santa Cruz. Enjoy breakfast on the waterfront terrace in the company of iguanas, Sally Lightfoot crabs and soaring Frigate birds. Watch the boats come in and out of the harbour and enjoy lunch and dinner of Ecuadorian inspiration, along with international cuisine.

Hotel Silberstein - Santa Cruz. Located in the centre of Puerto Ayora, it is also an information centre. Owned by Germans, the restaurant offers moderately-priced international cuisine as well as some Ecuadorian cuisine, amongst a beautiful garden setting.

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