Places to visit in Galapagos Islands

Top Things to Do in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

Places to Visit in Galapagos Islands

Top Attractions in Galapagos Islands


What travellers are saying

  • Poorna B
    Goshen, IN35 contributions
    This was the most adventurous trip I have ever taken - loved it !. Stayed on Galapagos Master Liveaboard and did 4 dives daily - Highly recommend this Liveaboard - the crew was fantastic - I have nothing negative to say about them - they treated all of us like family . Both Dive masters Franklin and Ivan were top notch - our safety was their top priority. Diving at Darwin and Wolf was nothing like I had ever done - very challenging but totally worth it . Biggest challenge was getting to the bottom while fighting 3 strong currents . Our Panga drivers were excellent too and watched out for us in case we were not able to decend and needed to get back on the panga. Marine Life was amazing - we saw so many Hammerheads , Galapagos sharks , Silkies, Eagle Rays, White tipped sharks , turtles, lots of other colorful fish , elusive Mola Mola . Dolphins were a common site . We were lucky to see some Orcas passing through . Some of the divers in our group were very lucky to see the whale sharks. We even got to swim with the Marine Iguanas which were by far my favorite. Highly recommend visiting these islands - no better way to see them other than via a liveaborad and diving them .
    Written 26 July 2021
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • travel193
    San Francisco, CA228 contributions
    I visited El Chato Reserve as part of a half day Highlands tour. It was definitely a highlight of my trip to the Galápagos to see the iconic giant tortoises. Though El Chato is a private reserve and you’re not seeing the tortoises in the wild, the reserve is vast and open so you don’t feel like you’re in a zoo or a completely contrived experience. There were tortoises everywhere and it was pretty great to see them walk, chew, and we even saw one try to mate.

    After the tour we had a delicious lunch there and were pleasantly surprised that they have a vegetarian option. They served a large portion of pesto (or pomodoro option) pasta with freshly baked bread. I am not sure if the pasta was vegan.

    It’s a relaxing half day tour with the lava tunnels and a quick stop at the Los Gemelos sink holes. I recommend wearing closed toe shoes! Not even Keens as it can get slippery and muddy. I was glad to be wearing shoes with good tread.

    ProTip: you’ll pass the reserve on your way from Baltra to town and vice versa, so you may be able to fit in a visit on a travel day.
    Written 15 May 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • jbwhitehouse
    Dallas, TX1,663 contributions
    A delightful place. Colorful vegetation and different cacti provide food for land iguanas and lava lizards amidst the small, uplifted lava flows. There is a sea lion nursery and many small tail gulls and yellow warblers. The area looking over the cliff offers views of water crashing the rocks and many bird types. Very enjoyable.
    Written 7 April 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • TrewinDorset
    Christchurch250 contributions
    Make sure to allow enough time for a 3+mile walk in the heat to and along te beach. Take plenty of water - and an umbrella or hat for sun protection.
    The path starts at the side of Puerto Ayora town, well sign-posted and a really good path. It's through National Park so you are sometimes asked to sign in, and need to note the closing time.
    Really good path to walk along, with plenty of birds and lizards to distract you along the way. You evenutaly get to the most stunning long, wide, white sand beach. No swimming!! Iguanas, pelicans to admire, and (protected) turtle nests.
    Walking along the beach (at the end of the path as you face the sea, head right) you get to the lagoon, super shallow and safe for swimming, snorkelling and kayaking. Simply standing still in the warm knee-deep water I had 2 different herons to the side of me, various small fish all around. Plus a white-tip shark passing to and fro just a metre or so from me for a while - who kindly came back when my husband joined me to prove I hadn's imagined it! Fabulous.
    Written 2 May 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • b2run
    Huatulco, Mexico202 contributions
    La Loberia is about a 2 km hike from town. The beach itself is nice but it's a little hard to get in as there are a lot of rocks. Also, there are a lot of sea lions that can be in your way. There is some shade just beyond the beach. The snorkeling isn't great. Beyond the beach, the hike continues another km across lava rocks to Las Negritas. Here are red and blue footed boobie nests along the cliffs and a great lookout. The going is rough, especially on the last climb but you are among the boobie and frigate nests.
    Written 24 February 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • GAbelle64
    Atlanta, GA4 contributions
    We took an 8 day cruise on the amazing Cormorant I ship with my husband and son (unfortunately my daughter was not able to come because of Covid). This is a 16 person ship and we were lucky enough to be on it with a wonderful family of 12 (3 generations) that made us feel a part of things as well.
    This is absolutely the best way to see an experience the Galapagos. Every day was filled with adventures - sea turtles, sea lions, tortoises, birds, Iguanas - you name it. Snorkeling and Walking. It was an abundance of nature in all its glory.
    Add to that an amazing ship - the cabins were large, extremely comfortable, with excellent bathrooms and private balconies. They were cleaned 3 times a day (yes you read that right). The food was delicious with multiple choices for each meal each day. The crew was friendly and so amazing accommodating and helpful. Additionally, our guide Roberto was super - so knowledgeable, friendly and shepherded the crowd flawlessly.
    Dealing with Royal Galapagos was also very easy. Long story but our US travel agent disappeared during the Covid year- we were able to track down the reservation with Royal Galapagos and dealt with them directly. It was easy and they were on top of everything.

    I am picky on my travel and I honestly wouldn't have changed a thing (except having my daughter with us). I would highly recommend Royal Galapagos and the Cormorant.
    Written 3 January 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • TrewinDorset
    Christchurch250 contributions
    We visited as part of a tour to see the tortoise breeding and research station, then returned on our own to explore at our own pace. You can only visit the tortoises with an NP guide so there is a charge, the rest though is free.

    The marine centre unfortunately was closed when we visited, but we enjoyed the museum & exhibits that were open. Also the walk to and from, stopping at the 2 little beaches with lots of iguanas and birds.
    If walking from the town, there's also a little (free) ceramic garden on the right before you get to the CD station & museum. Shady & pretty for a few photos, very unusual and creative.
    Written 2 May 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • GoFSUSeminoles
    21 contributions
    We snorkeled in Las Grietas. It's a short walk along a reasonable path to get to the grotto. While there a guide will assist you. We had 45 minutes to snorkel, which was enough time to slowly swim back and forth twice and take pictures of the fish.
    Written 11 May 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • jbwhitehouse
    Dallas, TX1,663 contributions
    We happily snorkeled nearby. This is a wonderful feeding ground for larger birds. One can see the exposed iron oxide where there was a landslide.
    Written 8 April 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • nickmc
    East Sussex, UK73 contributions
    You can walk (it's a very long way), bus, or take a taxi from Puerto Ayora to El Garrapatero beach, which is set off to the N and E of the town. Whichever you choose, we are sure you will have a lot of fun once you're there, with miles of sand and great animal life on offer.

    Consider renting a kayak to cross the bay and see the fish on the far side.

    If you take a cab, negotiate for it to drive you back via the highlands. It costs a little more but provides great views as you return home and you get to bathe in the cool, high-altitude, air for a while, very refreshing!
    Written 23 April 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • Adventure beyond imagination
    Munich, Germany14,605 contributions
    A long and tough hiking tour in the heat but the view was fantastic. Also the Volcano Chico was so unique and special to understand the geography of Galapagos.
    Written 9 February 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • TrewinDorset
    Christchurch250 contributions
    We wandered past here twice and loved watching the sea lions, pelicans and iguanas hanging around for scraps from the fish market. So natural, such a treat to see people & wildlife together and comfortable.
    Written 2 May 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • Ladonna I
    Montgomery, Alabama, United States182 contributions
    The two farthest islands go the Galapagos are Wolf and Darwin. And, if you go to the Galapagos to do Liveaboard diving make sure that your boat is scheduled to spend quality time at these two islands. This is where the big fish are, and schools of dolphins, hammerheads, etc. also a few degrees warmer than the central islands. But, you can't get there on a day tour.
    Written 18 May 2014
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • Peter
    Rotterdam, The Netherlands39 contributions
    When I first arrived at Isabela Island, I almost regretted it. Sandy roads and almost no people in sight (except for, of course, a few tourists). But it quickly changed when I found a nice place to spend the night (Cerro Azul) and booked a tour at Tortuga Tours, located in the main square of Puerto Villamil. The girl who helped me there was named Lady and she was sweet and funny and really took her time for me. After I was done with my activities I met her again and she told me she was going to play some game on the beach. I joined her a little later to watch the game. Then I walked around Puerto Villamil a bit more and it surprised me how lively it had become. People were all relaxing or enjoying themselves by playing soccer or basketball. The atmosphere on the island was so amazing, I fell in love with it.

    Of the three islands I've visited in the Galapagos (the others being San Cristóbal and Santa Cruz), this one pleasantly surprised me the most. :-)
    Written 11 May 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • ponaire
    North Coast, N Ireland5,974 contributions
    We had a fantastic experience here with Islanders. The yacht, food, guide, staff on the yacht were all excellent. Our trip included a second stop at the stunning Cerro Brujo beach. The main event is of course snorkeling at Kicker Rock. We were provided with first class equipment- full length wetsuits, snorkels & rings for anyone who wanted. The snorkeling was amazing- we were lucky & saw hammerheads, Eagle rays, turtles & a variety of fish. It really was an amazing experience. Our guide ( Jose Luis) was superb & sent us his photos & videos afterwards which are lovely to have- especially his video footage of the second hammerhead we saw. A word of caution - it is deep here & there is a current plus it can get a little bit choppy so if you're not a very confident snorkeller, make sure you choose a company that provides you with all the equipment & safety measures you need. For instance, we were all offered rings (great for kids or if you get tired snorkeling) plus a zodiac was with us so if anyone wanted to take a break or go back to the yacht, they could. All in all a truly fantastic experience!
    Written 5 May 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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