Attractions

Top Choice Wildlife Reserve in Isla Santa Cruz (Indefatigable)

El Chato Tortoise Reserve

South of Santa Rosa is El Chato Tortoise Reserve, where you can observe giant tortoises in the wild. When these virtually catatonic, prehistoric-looking beasts extend their accordionlike necks to feed, it’s an impre…
Top Choice Museum in Puerto Ayora

MAPRAE

The first of its kind in the world, this museum uses augmented reality to showcase a permanent exhibition of 55 pre-Columbian artifacts. The ancient cultures of Ecuador’s Amazon and coastal regions are brought to li…
Wildlife Reserve in Puerto Ayora

Charles Darwin Research Station

Just northeast of Puerto Ayora is this iconic national-park site, where more than 200 scientists and volunteers are involved with research and conservation efforts, the most well known of which involves a captive br…
Beach in Puerto Ayora

Tortuga Bay

In terms of sheer white-sand beauty, this beach is the rival of any in South America. You’ll find it at the end of a 2.5km paved trail southwest of Puerto Ayora. In addition to swimming (a spit of land provides prot…
Wildlife Reserve in Isla Santa Cruz (Indefatigable)

Rancho Primicias

Next to El Chato is this private ranch, owned by the Devine family. There are dozens of giant tortoises, and you can wander around at will. The entrance is beyond Santa Rosa, off the main road – ask locals for direc…
Tunnel in Isla Santa Cruz (Indefatigable)

Lava Tunnels

These impressive underground tunnels southeast of the village of Santa Rosa are more than 1km in length and were formed when the outside skin of a molten-lava flow solidified. When the lava flow ceased, the molten l…
Lake in Isla Santa Cruz (Indefatigable)

Las Grietas

For nice swimming and snorkeling, head to this water-filled crevice in the rocks. Talented and fearless locals climb the nearly vertical walls to plunge into the water below. Take a water taxi (per person US$0.60 fr…
Lagoon in Puerto Ayora

Playa Mansa

If you walk the length of Tortuga Bay, you'll reach this picturesque lagoon lined with mangroves. Here you can spot marine iguanas, brown pelicans and blue herons, among other species. On the nearby dunes, sea turtl…
Beach in Isla Santa Cruz (Indefatigable)

El Garrapatero Beach

A 30-minute taxi ride from Puerto Ayora through the highlands, plus a 15-minute walk, brings you to this beautiful beach. It has tidal pools that are good for exploring and snorkeling on calm days, and a lagoon with…
Monument in Puerto Ayora

Tortoise Statue

Among the various statues of prominent Galapagos wildlife around Puerto Ayora, this is probably the most photographed of them all.