The Galapagos Islands are famous for their diverse and unique plants, animals and landscapes. But like many other destinations, the Galapagos Islands have well kept secrets that many people are unaware of and here are a few of them
The Formation of The Islands
The Galapagos Islands are made up of 19 main islands and about 215 islets. What makes them so unique and beautiful is that they were formed at different times. This is because the constant movement of the NAZCA oceanic plate causes volcanoes to erupt and when these volcanoes become subaerial, they are considered islands. Because the NAZCA plate continues moving towards South America, new volcanoes will continue to emerge. The islands located to the east are the oldest and most eroded, and the islands located to the west are the youngest. This explains why the eastern islands are low in altitude; and why each island has different landscapes and ecosystems.
Unique Species of Fish
In these paradisiacal islands, there are 400 species of marine animals that turn activities, such as diving and snorkeling, into something special and unique. You will be able to see different species of fish with bright and exuberant colors. You will get to know the marine life that is hidden under the turquoise waters of the Galapagos such as sea turtles, sea lions, hammerhead sharks and so much more. There are also 50 endemic species that you won’t find anywhere else. Click here to learn more about the species you can swim with in the Galapagos.
Charles Darwin and the Giant Tortoises
The Galapagos Islands, famous for their abundance of wildlife, inspired Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. He mentioned in his journal that he had tried several times to climb up on a giant tortoise to have a ride.
A fun-fact is that the word Galapagos in Spanish means “saddle” and was used to describe the giant turtles that inhabit that region. These beautiful, giant tortoises can weigh more than 900 pounds and live between 100 and 170 years. This makes them the longest living vertebrate species on earth. Despite the fact that they were almost extinct in the 70’s, thanks to the conservation programs of animals in danger of extinction, today there are 19.000 giant tortoises inhabiting the Galapagos.
For years, visitors to the Galápagos Islands have left unstamped postcards in a barrel for their fellow travelers to deliver. In previous centuries, in the island named Floreana, the seafarers who frequented the island would deposit their correspondence in a barrel on the main beach. Later, travelers would sort through the barrel and deliver any items that were addressed to their next port of call. In this way, an informal, free postal service was established, and the stretch of beach became known as Post Office Bay. Today, an old barrel is an improvised mailbox for the island. It is located on a sandy track that leads from the beach. Tourists are invited to leave an unstamped postcard on the barrel for a future visitor to pick up and deliver to its intended destination. Would you like to try it?
Now that you know these 4 secrets about The Galapagos Islands, why don’t you start to plan your trip? We are sure you will have the best time enjoying this perfect paradise. Here at Ikala Galapagos Hotel we offer you luxury and comfort by way of stylish and elegant amenities, along with a swimming pool, restaurant and bar. Book a suite at Puerto Ayora’s newest hotel today!