The Galapagos Islands
The Enchanted Archipelago is renowned as an iconic destination – and with good reason. It features some of the world’s most unique and endemic wildlife species, wonderful beaches that continually rank among the world’s best. This living laboratory will offer its visitors a spectacle to be admired, a daily story that will turn this journey into a story to forever be told.
The Galapagos Islands, located roughly 600 miles off the coast of Ecuador is made up of 13 main islands, 6 smaller islands and more than 40 tiny islets and has remained a closely guarded natural secret for millions of years. The archipelago has evolved into a home for an amazing array of plants and animals. In 1859, Darwin published On the Origin of Species, which introduced his theory of evolution and the Galapagos Islands to the world.
When to go:
There is no bad time to visit the Galapagos Islands. No matter when you go, the adventure is sure to be unique and wonderful.
June through December are the cooler and drier months. Even though this is the dry season, a garúa (or light, misty rain) is still possible, particularly in December. Skies can be cloudy and gray.
January through May are the warmer and wetter months, but the rain creates brilliantly clear blue skies between showers — great for photography.
March and April tend to be the hottest and wettest months, while August tends to be the coolest time.
Over time, the archipelago has evolved into a home for an amazing array of plants and animals. The most famous early visitor was Charles Darwin, a young naturalist who spent 19 days studying the islands' flora and fauna in 1835. In 1859, Darwin published On the Origin of Species, which introduced his theory of evolution — and the Galápagos Islands — to the world.
Since then, word of these islands and their magnificent beauty has steadily grown. In 1959, the Galápagos became Ecuador’s first national park, and in 1978, it was named a UNESCO World Heritage site. Today, more than 275,000 people visit the Galápagos each year to see those incredible animals and landscapes for themselves.
If you’re set on seeing a particular species in the Galápagos, talk to your travel advisor and pick the month and itinerary that will give you the best chance for a sighting. Some species are seasonal, and many exist only on specific islands. For example, the waved albatross, also called the Galápagos albatross, is not a full-time resident. These birds just show up for mating in the spring and summer.
Boats in the Galápagos Islands are limited to a maximum of 100 passengers, but most carry fewer than that. The benefit of traveling on a smaller-capacity vessel is a more intimate onboard experience and faster transfer times between your main vessel and the rubber dinghies. Smaller boats also tend to have more character and history.
Cruise Lines that go to
The Galapagos Islands