Seniors Tour the Galapagos Islands

Dec 20th, 2010 | By James E Becker | Category: Senior Travel

If you consider travel to Ecuador, you will probably include the Galapagos Islands.  Much like the revolutionary scientific idea it’s become synonymous with, the Galápagos Islands may inspire you to think differently about the world.

Nowhere else can you engage in a staring contest with wild animals and lose. You can’t help thinking you’ve stumbled upon an alternate universe, some strange utopian colony organized by sea lions – the golden retrievers of the Galápagos – and arranged on principles of mutual cooperation. Don’t come expecting to see bizarre wildlife – there are no half-penguin, half-turtle ‘penurtles, ’ no large mammals with shark fins. What’s truly special is that the creatures that call the islands home act as if humans are nothing more than slightly annoying paparazzi.

The Galapagos Islands were formed from volcanos, that created numerous small islands protecting the inhabitants throughout the ages.  They are said to have changed little since their ancestors traveled over 1000km to the islands and first called this amazing archipelago their home.  This is the area in the world that had a significant influence on Darwin’s theory of evolution and natural selection.  “Plant and animal species traversed 1000km of ocean to colonize the islands, leaving species isolated and evolving independently on different islands.” Galapagosislands.comLearn about the Galapagos Islands and what you need to consider on a visit to this magical place.

Back on the mainland, traveling in and around the highlands and lowlands of Ecuador, you will particularly enjoy the amazing biodiversity of the country: 1,600 species of birds, 1,000 species of fish, 680 of reptiles and amphibians, 230 of mammals, and more than 20,000 species of plants.  At the eastern foothills of the Andes what the Ecuadorians call “El Oriente” one finds the endless green rainforest with its many tributaries that each runs into the Amazon River.  The country is divided into four distinctive areascalled the Pacific Coastal, The Andes, the Amazon and the Galapagos Islands. Once the Inca Empire’s northernmost territory, successive waves of invaders have left their indelible mark on the country.  The remains of Inca and pre-Inca fortresses dot hill tops across the Sierra, while in the highland valleys Quechua-speaking Indians sell traditional handicrafts in thousand year old markets. 

The Ecuador Explorer sitemay provide all the help you will need to learn all about Ecuador prior to your visit. See the Before You Go section, find the largest variety of Ecuador Hotels on the web, and find the most exciting Things to Do and See with links to great Ecuador Tour Operators.  The site also provides packing suggestions, advice for eating, drinking, hiking, trekking,climbing, birdwatching, and generally getting the most out of your visit to Ecuador. Check the news page, visa and immigration section, and other country information pages to remain informed about relevant updates in Ecuador before you go and during your trip. jeb

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