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Galápagos Island, Galápagos Ecuador
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Galapagos Islands Ecuador


The Galapagos archipelago is located on both sides of the equator about 970 km (600 miles) west of mainland Ecuador. Local time is GMT -6. It consists of thirteen major islands, six smaller islands, 42 islets and rock, covering a total area of 7850 km2. The largest island is Isabela, with an area of 4590 km2, which also has the highest point of the archipelago, Wolf Volcano with 1690 meters asl. 97% of the total area of the islands is part of the Galapagos National Park, the rest is up to the inhabited areas and crops of the island Santa Cruz, San Cristobal, Isabela and Floreana, in addition to Baltra Island, occupied in its entirety Armed Forces of Ecuador.
The Galapagos are a province of Ecuador, whose capital is Puerto Baquerizo Moreno on San Cristobal Island. Puerto Ayora, on Isla Santa Cruz, is the city more tourist travel. The total population of the islands, including the floating population is 16,109 inhabitants.




The islands were formed some 4 or 5 million years of volcanic eruptions as a result, emerging from the ocean surface. Today the Galapagos are considered one of the most active volcanoes in the world.
Many of the islands are only the tips of some volcanoes and show an advanced state of erosion, others are completely submerged. Recent eruptions, as in Fernandina Marchena in 1991 or in 1995, are evidence that the islands are still in process of formation. Other islands like Baltra and North Seymour, have evidence of having been formed by tectonic movements, in which the ocean floor was pushed toward the surface.


Climate of the Galapagos Islands

Although the islands are located on the equator, the temperature of the ocean surface varies greatly, between 7 and 28 degrees centigrade. The Galapagos Islands also face drastic changes. The period from January to March is considered the hot and humid season, and in March the warmest month of the year, this season many plants, and the water temperature is ideal for diving. In the July-September period was less rain and more islands are dry, but cooler, the water temperature decreases considerably, but it is the ideal season to see more marine life, as the animals prefer the cold currents.

The regulatory climate in the Galapagos Islands is the surface temperature and ocean currents, creating microclimates that influence the habitat of flora and fauna of each island. Choose your priorities when choosing the time to visit the Galapagos Islands: choose what you want to see and do, because not all animals are present throughout the year.

Conservation of the Galapagos Islands

The Galapagos Islands are the archipelago's most diverse and complex world, where conditions remain relatively intact. By its distance from the continent and the fact that it was never linked to this, the existing flora and fauna have evolved dramatically to what they are today and remained unchanged until the man came to them first. The species of plants and animals peculiar to the islands had no predators for thousands of years of evolution, why the animals do not show fear in the presence of humans and other animals. This makes the Galapagos a fascinating and very special place and so much interest to science, tourism and photography, where visitors can have an experience with nature that does not forget in a lifetime.
But while this feature makes your balance is so delicate and fragile, and therefore in their management is essential to control the introduction and spread of alien species, as well as a strict control of tourism and other human activities such as fishing. The institution responsible for managing and protecting the Islands and Marine Reserve is the Galapagos National Park, in collaboration with other entities such as the Charles Darwin Foundation.
The wildlife consists mainly of birds, mammals and reptiles. In the Galapagos there are no amphibians. Its rich marine life make the island a unique place and we now have a reputation as the most important destination for diving in the world. At present there are animals introduced by settlers for some years, like goats, pigs, donkeys, dogs, cats and rats, which, finding no competitors have expanded into a major problem for the conservation of fauna islands. The same is true of plants, so that the institutions involved in conservation are also responsible for the control and eradication of plants and animals.


Diving the Galapagos Islands

The underwater world of the Galapagos Islands has yet to be "discovered" and that is precisely the condition which makes it an interesting destination. Diving in the Galapagos was a personal experience, is a pristine, uncharted. However there are some experts in Galapagos diving operating for over a decade.
Unlike other extraordinary dive sites, the Galapagos Islands do not have coral reefs as the main attraction, but this unique blend of marine animals (one in four species is endemic to the archipelago), and lack of fear toward human presence under water. In the Galapagos you can dive in company of sea turtles, manta rays, penguins, sea lions, dolphins and numerous species of sharks, including hammerheads and whale sharks. There are also hundreds of species of tropical fish, many of which are exclusive to this fantastic underwater sanctuary.
The islands are about 30 dive sites, a combination which you can access through tours of one or two weeks. All tours are approved by the Ecuadorian National Park Service. Normally offered for two to three dives per day, plus land excursions on the islands. Dive operators offer professional guides, bilingual naturalist and specialized flora and fauna of the Galapagos. All guides are certified teachers. It also offers high quality equipment and boats that have the international safety standards.
There are diving opportunities for all tastes. There are courses for beginners, tours 8 to 15 days for experienced divers and tours combined with visits to land commanded by naturalist guides. The best time to dive is from November to April, and at that time the sea is quite calm and the water temperature is warm.


Gastronomy in Galapagos Islands

In the Galapagos you'll find delicious sea food and you can choose from the wide variety of seafood on the islands, including the spiny lobster when not in season. For every month you can enjoy the delicious lobster Galapagos and delicious ceviches. There are also many restaurants and pizzerias are designed for tourists.
Elegant meal, more Western-style. The peoples of the islands are small, look for the most-crowded! Sure they are the best!. You can test in street kiosks, from six p.m. offers variety of dishes and very tasty dinner.
Lunch is included in all trips by boat. During the tours more affordable food is not as abundant as in the most luxurious, in fact, if you travel on a cruise and have a small appetite, it brings you some goodies for the boat. But remember that the food is not allowed on the trips to the islands.


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