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The Galapagos Islands are an archipelago of 13 major islands, 6 minor islands and  42 islets  or surfacing rocks, a total of 8.000 sq Km2 approximately located in the Pacific Ocean about 1,000 kilometers west of the coast of South America.

The Galapagos archipelago is politically part of Ecuador. The oldest of the islands are about 4 million years old and the youngest are still in the process of being formed. Indeed, the Galapagos Islands are considered to be one of the most active volcanic areas in the world.

The islands are famed for their vast number of endemic species and the studies conducted by Charles Darwin that led to his theory of natural selection.
 

Galapagos Islands vacation cruises

The islands are jointly operated by the Galapagos National Park Service and the Charles Darwin Research Station.
The Park Service provides rangers and guides, and is responsible for overseeing the many tourists who visit each year.

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The Galapagos Explorer II, the newest and most comfortable exploration vessel operating in the Galapagos Islands.

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