Strung along the eastern Pacific Ocean, almost 620 miles off the Ecuadorian coast are the Galápagos Islands, a truly singular place. The Spaniards call them the “Bewitched Isles” and it’s little wonder why: it’s hard not to be won over by a place where animals still take precedence over humans.

Even those who don’t consider themselves nature enthusiasts will be impressed by the wonders of the islands, which remain much as they would have since Charles Darwin’s historic visit here in 1831. These remarkable islands accommodate exotic species that don’t exist anywhere else in the world: lava lizards, flightless cormorants, blue-footed boobies, Darwin’s finches, and, of course, the languid giant tortoise – the islands’ unofficial and unwitting mascot. And that’s not all either. There are many, many more besides, including water-dwelling creatures, such as sea lions, dolphins, the only species of tropical penguin in the world and marine iguanas – direct descendants of their land-bound cousins who have evolved to allow them to hunt underwater. The island’s landscapes, from the barren and bleakly beautiful volcanic inland terrain to the white-sand beaches of the coastline, also captivate.

ecuador-galapagos-description-03Divers will think they’ve stumbled into underwater Eden while exploring the coastal environments of the Galápagos. A veritable eco-marine paradise, the waters here conceal pristine coral reefs, sting rays, turtles and even whale and hammerhead sharks, as well as lava tunnels where lava still flows.

Though nature may reign supreme here, travelers don’t necessarily have to rough it. Luxury travel on the Galápagos Islands is a feasible option. In fact, one of the best ways to see these spectacular environments is on luxury cruises of the Galápagos Islands. Choose to travel on a large ship or on a more intimate vessel and decide how long you want to spend out at sea – a longer cruise will incorporate more islands so you’re guaranteed a variety of experiences. Special kids’ activities can also be incorporate into family tours to Ecuador’s legendary archipelago.

As the best travel agency in Ecuador, Kuoda can ensure you get to explore these islands in a way that is most rewarding way for you. No matter what way that may be, one thing is for sure; a Galápagos Islands private tour is sure to be an eye-opening experience.