The Galapagos Islands have long been the subject of intense geographical interest, and public scrutiny! We’ve all seen a David Attenborough documentary with the Galapagos Islands included, after all. There’s no doubt about it; these islands are beautiful, filled with life, and host some of the world’s most unforgettable sights. But, perhaps surprisingly, there’s still so much we don’t know about the Galapagos archipelago!
With this in mind, we’ve compiled 10 interesting facts about the Galapagos Islands that you might never have heard of. Once you’ve read this article, though, you’re sure to pay the Galapagos Islands a visit.
- Out of 127 Galapagos Islands, only 4 are inhabited – That’s right! Out of a mixture of 127 different islands, rocks and islets, only 19 are main islands, wherein only four are inhabited. These islands are the Isabela, Floreana, San Cristobal and Santa Cruz.
- There are active volcanoes still on the Islands – The Galapagos Islands have 13 active volcanoes out of a total of 21, with the most recent eruption occurring in 2018!
- The Galapagos Islands have many names – The Galapagos Islands are also known as the Archipelago de Colon and the Enchanted Islands, depending on who you ask!
- They’re a UNESCO world heritage site – The natural flora and fauna of the Galapagos Islands are so beautiful and diverse, they’re protected as both a National Park and world heritage site.
- These Islands are ancient – Espanola, the oldest Island in the Galapagos archipelago, is around 4 million years old.
- Tropical penguins live here! – The wildlife in the Galapagos is so wide-ranging, that tropical penguins flourish alongside storks and tortoises across the Islands.
- Out of 400 different fish species living here, 50 are unique to the archipelago – At least 50 of the over 400 fish species that thrive in the Galapagos can be found nowhere else – how exciting!
- Galapagos tortoises are giant, with an equally great lifespan – Galapagos tortoises can grow big, really big! Adults can weigh up to 40 stone, and live more than 150 years.
- The Galapagos Islands only have two seasons per year – The Galapagos Islands have a dry season from June to December, and a wet season from December to May. Therefore, there’s not really a summer or winter that we’d recognise!
- Charles Darwin directly references the Galapagos Islands in On The Origin of Species – In his On The Origin of Species, Charles Darwin affectionately references the Galapagos Islands as ‘a little world within itself.’ Darwin’s revolutionary work is said to have preserved the Islands, and the wildlife within, for decades.
Now that you know some of the most interesting facts about the Galapagos Islands, do you feel ready to pay them a visit? If so, travel with Silversea Cruises. Reaching the Galapagos archipelago has never been so easy, or luxurious. By travelling in comfort, you’ll be able to fully appreciate the sights you’re about to see; all you have to focus on is taking the best pictures!