Galapagos Islands Travel Blog

Welcome to the Galapagos Islands Travel Blog. We provide unbiased opinions on the best travel ideas, sales, specials across all islands. If you want to arrange a private tour contact 201-688-7170

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Travel Galapagos - Plaza Sur

Traveling the Galapagos Islands without visiting Plaza Sur would be a huge mistake. There’s a lot to see for travelers. Plaza Sur is a tiny island, the southern one of a pair of crescent-shaped islands not far-off of the east side of Santa Cruz. Plaza Sur is just 130 meters wide and a kilometer long. Unlike the conical volcanic islands, it is the effect of shifts in the earth’s crust, which have lifted it on top of the surface of the water. It is like a tilted tabletop, expanding gradually from the beach to cliffs of about 20 meters on the south side.

I like to emphasize Plaza Sur for those of you who travel Galapagos for a number of reasons. For instance, landing on the islands usually is trouble-free because there is a small cement jetty to which the panga can pull up. If the water is calm, you should be able to make a dry, sometimes slippery landing and then take the easy walk of about one hour. The only problem to landing is that sea lions also love to lie on the jetty. The guide usually has to clap or make other noises to make them go away, usually rather grumpily.

Once you reach the island, the first thing you will notice is the vegetation. This is one of the islands with tree sized opuntia, or prickly pear cactus. They are very handsome with their bright russet bark, textured in a mosaic of elongated diamond-shaped plates. Growing from the bark are veritable explosions of gray spines, more than three centimeters long. Along the branches and at their tips are great fleshy paddles. These green paddles are a source of food for the finches and the land iguanas that are common here. It is wonderful to see the sturdy, pink tongued iguanas stand on their hind legs to munch on those spine-laden pads. Leathery gums seem to be their savior.

You see… Why would you travel Galapagos without checking out this fascinating island?

Monday, June 22, 2009

Travel Galapagos - San Cristobal

Travel Galapagos

San Cristobal, Galapagos is becoming a major tourism site now that its airport is being used as the arrival point for many travelers. The port, Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, is the organizational center for the islands. A stroll down the main street can be enjoyable, and a cool drink often is welcome. Travel Galapagos should include birding in the hills behind the town can be rewarding too. Your group is likely to be taken to several visitor sites in the higher elevations.

Directly south of San Cristobal is Hood Island. It is the nesting site of the waved albatross, and there are colonies of Nazca and blue footed boobies. When you arrive on Hood you are greeted by some of the largest and most colorful of the marine iguanas and usually by lots of sea lions.
When you travel galapagos try to go West of Hood is Floreana, where there’s a good chance to see flamingos and migrating shoebirds in its large, brackish lagoon. For human history, Post Office Bay is the place to go. It’s a place that reminds you that Darwin came to this spot, and you’ll see mementos of many more recent visitors.

For snorkelers, one of the best moments of the trip can be a quick visit to Devil’s Crown, just a few hundred meters off Floreana. This ominous looking, partially submerged lava cone provides a protected area for swimming. If the weather is good and the sea calm, you’ll want to get into your panga for the short trip to the middle of the Crown and slip over the side for a few minutes of underwater beauty.