We already had a good feeling when sealing our last minute deal to Galapagos. We booked a luxury upper deck cabin on a small high quality boat. A 1st class nature guide is promised too. And the best: All that at a bargain price *smiley cool*
Are you flexible too and can wait a few days? Perfect. Get left-over or cancellation places on cruises. Just shop around some outfits in Quito and ask for cruises leaving the next days.
And it only gets better with every minute we spend on this “detour” from the mainland. Or to be honest, it gets better “most of the time” for Iris…
The arrival on the islands is similar to the approach to some other remote sunny paradises on this world. Very small airport. Lots of tourists. What is already different, is the entrance fee you have to pay before being allowed to leave the airport – a quite substantial USD 100.
Nevertheless the airline that brought us here already has the right logo on their planes *smiley winking*
To see the most interesting parts you need to take an organized boat tour. Opportunities for visitors are limited to a few spots and villages. Most islands are completely restricted. Around 97% of the territory is a National Park and only accessible together with a certified guide. We will stay 5 days / 4 nights on our boat and visit several islands of the archipelago.
After checking in and before sailing off, we took the chance for a walk ashore. Seems, that wildlife does not really care about the boundaries of the National Park. And even enjoys some of the man-made amenities. Why should you sleep on the sandy floor, when there is a nice bench?
With a good dinner at a (not yet) shaking boat in the harbor, it was time to leave civilization behind. We are taking off towards Isla Espanola and other small islands.