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//Travelling Here
Travelling Here 2018-05-03T21:05:19+00:00

TRAVELLING HERE

We are located in Puerto Ayora town on the island of Santa Cruz, the closest airport is Seymour Eco Airport located on Baltra Island. Flights depart daily from Quito or Guayaquil from the Ecuadorian mainland to Baltra and San Cristobal.

From Seymour Eco Airport

Baltra is across the Itabaca channel from Santa Cruz, therefore you will need to take a public bus, ferry and another public bus to get to Puerto Ayora.  Below are few instructions of this journey:

  • Buses from the Baltra airport to the Itabaca channel ferry are free of charge, they wait just outside the airport and leave when full.
  • The ferry and the public bus from the Santa Cruz dock (Canal Itabanca) have a small charge ( $1 dollar).
  • The first bus and ferry ride are both about 10 minutes long.  The bus from Santa Cruz to Puerto Ayora is about 45 minutes.
  • The public bus drops you off opposite the main pier in the center of Puerto Ayora.

**While you are waiting at the Baltra dock, keep an eye out for blue footed boobies, herons and bright red Galapagos crabs on the rocks – you’ll start to feel the Galapagos magic!**

From San Cristobal Airport

If you fly into the airport on San Cristobal you have two options:

  • Walk or take a sort taxi ride into town where you can take a speed boat to Santa Cruz (see more information in arriving ‘By Sea’)
  •  Travel onto Santa Cruz in a small passenger plane.

From other islands

As in San Cristobal, you can also take a small passenger plane from Isabela Island to Santa Cruz if you prefer not to travel by sea.  The journey takes about 30 minutes and you can buy tickets from the islands’ airports, at the EMETEBE office in Puerto Ayora or online.

Twice a day local passenger boats travel between Santa Cruz and other islands and are the most common way to get around the Galapagos.

Travelling to Santa Cruz FromDeparture Time
San Cristobal7am and 3pm
Isabela6am and 2:30pm
Floreana2:30pm

Journeys take about 2 – 2.5 hours each way, however between July and December the sea is often more choppy and journeys can take a little longer.  If you suffer from sea sickness or back pain, please bring and take medication ahead of your departure time or consider travelling by air instead (see above).

All boats arrive at the main port in Santa Cruz.  From there you can follow the road along the sea front, towards the Charles Darwin Center to find us (about 10-15 minutes’ walk).  See ‘Finding Us in Puerto Ayora’ for more detailed directions.

  • Please make sure your passport is valid for at least 6 months.
  • Currently, no visa is required for US and UK citizens or citizens of most other countries. Please check your individual situation with your travel agent, tour operator or local Consulate.

As with everywhere, upon arrival in Seymour airport you will go through customs and immigration. A few things to be aware of:

  • You should have been given an entry form to complete on the plane.  Officials will stamp and mark the number of days permitted for your stay.  You will be given a copy of these papers – be sure to keep them in a safe place, as you will need them to leave the country.
  • **If you lose these papers phone our office immediately!  At least 72 hours is needed to process the replacement paperwork before you can depart.**
  • You will at this point also be asked to pay the Galapagos National Park entry fee (currently $100 for adults, $50 for children). Please double check the required entry amount in advance.
  • In Ecuador, anyone entering the country temporarily is exempt from paying any customs duty. Therefore you should not need to pay any taxes or duties for your luggage, new or used articles that you will use during your trip, and portable items such as photo cameras, video cameras, laptops, radios and CD players.
  • Aside from the limitations set by each airline, there are no specific customs restrictions concerning the number of pieces of luggage or maximum weight you are allowed to bring into the country.

We are close to the Charles Darwin center. Walk along the main road, with the sea on your right hand side, to what looks like the end of shops and town. We are opposite the cemetery (large, with white walls and a cross) just before the entrance to the National park.

Galapagos is one hour behind the Ecuadorian mainland time which uses Eastern Standard Time zone (daylight savings time is not observed). GMT-5 in mainland Ecuador is GMT-6 in the Galapagos Islands.

The official language is Spanish, however English is spoken by most personnel you will meet if you have contracted services through an agency or operator. English is also widely understood in hotels, restaurants and most shops. If you speak some Spanish though do use it – everyone prefers using their own language!

US Dollar

110 volts, 60 cycles AC

Immunizations are not required to visit Ecuador or the Galapagos.  That said, we always recommend consulting your doctor or travel clinic, especially if you also plan to visit the rainforest.

If an ongoing medical condition may require attention, please let us know so we can be prepared should an emergency arise.  Should you become ill we can provide you with details of English speaking physicians or help contact your Consulate or Embassy.  If you take regular medication, don’t forget to pack enough for your whole trip!

The sun in the equatorial latitude is quite strong, even on cloudy days, so we recommend you wear and carry sunscreen at all times.  In particular, some islands have little shade so it’s a good idea to protect your head, face, arms and legs while visiting them. Sunglasses are also useful against glare.

Please consider these recommendations while you are here:

  1. Do not drink tap water
  2. Avoid ice in your drinks – although it is usually fine in larger hotels, restaurants, and cruise and liveaboard boats (check with your guide).
  3. Be careful of eating raw foods, vegetables and salads, always prefer cooked food.
  4. If you have any allergies or dietary requirements be sure to advise your travel agent, tour operator or us in advance.
  5. Always use sunscreen even on cloudy days

Good general health is recommended for visitors to the Galapagos as it is a more active holiday destination. On most days you will probably be taking long walks in warm weather, cycling and swimming, snorkeling or diving in cooler seas all of which can be tiring. If necessary, include a bit of extra exercise (walking, swimming, cycling) in your trip preparation so that you can really enjoy your time here.

  • We recommend you pack light and pack smart. Here are a few things to include:
  • Copies of important documents (visa, passport etc)
  • Lightweight fast drying shorts and t-shirts
  • Long sleeved shirts and pants for evening or early morning
  • Swimwear
  • Windbreaker
  • Hat: preferably that covers the ears
  • Lots of sunscreen lotion
  • Good walking shoes, Tevas or sandals
  • Sunglasses
  • Spare prescription glasses (if needed)
  • Small backpack to carry on land visits (for your camera and water)
  • Plastic or dry bag to keep your camera/ photographic equipment dry
  • Extra camera batteries and equipment chargers
  • Binoculars
  • Mask, snorkel and wet suit for snorkelling (can also be rented)
  • Contact lenses for diving and snorkeling if you wear glasses
  • Insect repellent
  • Regular medications
  • Anti-seasickness medication (if you are prone to suffering)
  • Wasps are not terribly common, but if you are specifically allergic to wasp stings, bring your own antidote