Galapagos, which islands?

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Galapagos, which islands?

Postby Alpine_Resort » Sun Aug 19, 2012 2:07 pm

I'm looking to book a trip to the Galapagos and am leaning towards the Southern Islands (10 day). Could those of you who have been there tell me which was your favourite islands?
Jodi from rural Ontario, Canada
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Re: Galapagos, which islands?

Postby jackc3@shaw.ca » Fri Aug 24, 2012 1:10 pm

Hi Jodi,

That’s a tough question.

All the Islands are unique. I thoroughly enjoyed all the Islands I visited on my trip a few years ago. I think it comes down to what your preferences are.

Each tour has a mix of Islands. You may want to visit three particular Islands, but not all three are on the same itinerary.

Here is a link to a site that lists all the Islands and identifies the wildlife that are on each Island, and which places are good for snorkeling. Also identifies which are wet landings and which are dry landings.

http://www.happygringo.com/ecuador-trav ... s/map.html

Currently there are 58 Galapagos tours offered – 18 of them are 10 day tours, 2 of which offer a 20% discount.

I enjoyed my first tour so much I’m departing on another tour on Sept 11.


Hope this helps.

Jack
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Re: Galapagos, which islands?

Postby Alpine_Resort » Fri Aug 24, 2012 5:50 pm

Which tour did you do, Jack? Which one are you doing in Sept? I'll likely be going in February. Yes, I want to visit them all and can't decide!
Jodi from rural Ontario, Canada
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Re: Galapagos, which islands?

Postby jackc3@shaw.ca » Sat Aug 25, 2012 1:59 pm

Hi Jodi,

I'll be going on the 10 day Northern Islands tour (EV10HA)

Jack

PS - I'm a fellow Canadian - from Richmond BC
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Re: Galapagos, which islands?

Postby Alpine_Resort » Thu Sep 13, 2012 8:34 am

Jack; did you do the 10 day Southern Island cruise last time? Did you go at the same time of year? You must have really loved it to go back again! I'd love to hear your comparison of the two trips!
Jodi from rural Ontario, Canada
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Re: Galapagos, which islands?

Postby AdamfromCanada » Wed Oct 24, 2012 7:39 pm

Alpine_Resort wrote:I'm looking to book a trip to the Galapagos and am leaning towards the Southern Islands (10 day). Could those of you who have been there tell me which was your favourite islands?


Hi Jodi,

I went on the Land Galapagos trip with G Adventures this past spring (http://www.gadventures.com/trips/land-galapagosmulti-activities/SEGL/2012/). We visited San Cristobal, Floreana, Isabela and Santa Cruz. As mentioned, each island is quite different and has its own draws. San Cristobal included snorkeling at Kicker Rock, which was phenomenal. We saw Galapagos sharks, Green Sea Turtles, Sea Lions, Marine Iguanas, tonnes of fish and birds there. Some of my tour even saw a couple hammerhead sharks (although sadly, not me).

Image

Image

Floreana is a quiet island, very few people there. We saw an owl on the island, lots more iguanas and lava lizards, and again, some pretty amazing snorkeling, again with LOTS of sea turtles. I even saw a 6-foot Manta Ray (although my camera failed just before I saw him).

Image

Image

Isabela is the biggest island. We hiked a volcano there and saw our first Galapagos Tortoises and this guy.

Image

Finally, on Santa Cruz we saw much bigger tortoises, more lizards, more birds...

Image

Taking the Land route meant two things: 1) We stayed in hotels, so no one had seasickness issues while trying to sleep. 2) We travelled between islands during the day, which gave us the opportunity to see these guys between San Cristobal and Floreana:

Image

All that said, I think if I were to go back, I might try to see other islands. I didn't see Galapagos Hawks, Land Iguanas, Albatross or Red-footed Boobies. I didn't get very close to most of the sea birds (unlike some friends of mine who have done other trips. I only saw penguins once and flamingos once (from a distance). Doing the route I did, most of those aren't likely to be spotted. If you go another route, you will likely miss seeing some of the animals I saw, so I don't think there's any wrong choices. It's a wonderful place and I'm sure you'll love your time there whichever trip you choose.
Feel free to check out my travels on http://www.adammallonphotography.com
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Re: Galapagos, which islands?

Postby Alpine_Resort » Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:04 pm

Thanks Adam. What great photos! What did you use for the underwater shots? I've booked the 10 southern cruise http://www.gadventures.com/trips/voyage ... itinerary/
which looks pretty awesome and visits all the islands except Isabella and Fernandina. I'm excited about the photographic opportunities!
Jodi from rural Ontario, Canada
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Re: Galapagos, which islands?

Postby AdamfromCanada » Sun Dec 02, 2012 4:51 am

Alpine_Resort wrote:Thanks Adam. What great photos! What did you use for the underwater shots? I've booked the 10 southern cruise http://www.gadventures.com/trips/voyage ... itinerary/
which looks pretty awesome and visits all the islands except Isabella and Fernandina. I'm excited about the photographic opportunities!


I had a Pentax...WG10 I think? It took some really nice underwater shots, although unfortunately, it also fried while snorkelling (just before a 6 foot manta ray swam past me!) and it hasn't worked at all since. I've since bought an Olympus that also takes nice photos underwater (and so far hasn't fried!). Biggest tip about shooting underwater? Don't use your zoom. The light is too low most often and so you're pretty much guaranteed to get blurry shots. In Galapagos, I found I was so close to so many of the animals in and out of the water that you really didn't need zoom anyhow.

Have a great trip! That looks like a fantastic itinerary...I'm jealous and want to go again now!
Feel free to check out my travels on http://www.adammallonphotography.com
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Re: Galapagos, which islands?

Postby angelaugh » Fri Mar 01, 2013 10:42 pm

Hi there!

I'm also struggling with this problem! We're looking at the Northern Islands' itinerary which looks pretty great but note that it doesn't include some of the "big islands" - Isabella, Fernandina, Espanola... debating whether we would be missing out too much on some of the key sites and not sure if/when we'll get back. Has anyone doe this itinerary? If so any things you didn't get to you wish you could have seen? Or did you feel you got a good experience despite missing those islands?
Also - we're going in May - any tips about the water conditions? Did may people have problems with seasickness?

Thanks for your help!
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Re: Galapagos, which islands?

Postby Alpine_Resort » Sun Mar 03, 2013 5:11 pm

We just got back from the Southern Islands (10 day) tour and I'm thinking no matter what you choose, you can't go wrong in the Galapagos. Every island is different and you just can't see them all. We had no trouble with sea sickness and took anti nausea tablets just one night when it was rough. The crew offer you tablets just in case.
Jodi from rural Ontario, Canada
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