Galapagos are an archipelago of 120 islands.
The islands are home to species that have developed over millions of
years, cut off by sea from invasion by humans and other species. Of
the 5000 species of living organisms in the Galapagos Islands, 40 per
cent are only found on these islands, including: 36 per cent of their
plants, 90 percent of their reptiles, 60 per cent of their birds and
mammals, 46 per cent of their insects.
famous of the rare species are: giant marine tortoises which grow up
to 1.5-metres long and 1-metre high and live for hundreds of years,
marine iguanas which are lizards called 'diving dragons',
cormorants which have lived so long without predators
that they have lost the ability to fly, the only
penguin and albatross
found on the Equator, a great distance from their usual habitat in the
Southern Ocean, giant
sea lions and remarkable
Visas: Citizens of most countries can stay a maximum of 90
days per annum without needing a visa.
Health risks: Dengue fever, hepatitis, malaria, typhoid, and a
minor risk of cholera, rabies and diphtheria. Get a yellow fever
vaccination if you plan to visit the rainforests of the Oriente.
Weights & measures: Metric
When to Go: Travelers can visit Ecuador year-round; certain
areas are better at certain times of the year, but there are no
absolutes. In terms of the weather, El Niño hits hard about one winter
every decade, playing havoc with road and rail connections and making
communication spotty in some outlying areas.
If you're visiting the Galapagos, you'll find the warm rainy season
from January to April is the best time for snorkeling; the rest of the
year the water is cooler, typically around 20°C (68°F). in the
Galapagos tends to be mid-December through January and June to August,
when most of the vacationing foreign visitors arrive.