Places to go

Places to visit in Galapagos from Hotel Mainao

These geologically young volcanic islands are one of the most beautiful and sensitive regions of the world, with an incredible biodiversity that helped inspire the theory of evolution of Charles Darwin.

Santa Cruz Island 

Located in the center of the archipelago, Santa Cruz is the most populated island and is the hub port where the ships depart carrying travelers between the islands. The town of Puerto Ayora's people, sun, sea birds and fishing boats form a balance of nature and humanity worth getting to know. 

Baltra Island  

Is located just 1km from the northern coast of Santa Cruz. Seymour Airport is located on Baltra. Here you will find the channel Itabaca which crossed aboard the Ferri. (Local transport)

Places to go around Puerto Ayora

  1. Tortuga Bay (Turtle Bay)  

A beautiful hike of 2.5Km of 50 minutes takes you from the edge of Puerto Ayora through dry lowland forest until arrival at the pristine white sand beach.

What you'll find here:

  • Information hut to register your arrival.
  • Mansa Beach, perfect for swimming, snorkeling, sea kayaking.
  • Brava beach, preferred by surfers and marine iguanas

Wildlife you can see at Tortuga Bay:

  • Marine iguanas
  • Lava Lizard
  • Sharks
  • Sea turtles
  • Birds: mockingbirds, finches, Canary Maria, frigates, lava gull
  • Vegetation: Mangle white, black Mangle Mangle Jeli, red Mangle, Manzanillo, Forest Tuna.
  1. Playa de los Alemanes

Located 15 minutes from the pier of Puerto Ayora, with crystal clear waters and totally clean, white sand make this a perfect place for nesting marine iguanas.

What you'll find here:

Mansa Beach - Perfect for swimming, snorkeling, and sea kayaking from the beach.

You can see here:

  • Marine iguanas
  • Beautiful mangrove landscapes
  • Birds: Marias, mockingbirds, finches, lava herons.
  1. Tortoise Breeding Center

The Fausto Llerena Breeding Center is located near the administrative facilities of the Galapagos National Park, with an area of approximate distance of 1,359 meters. Here you can find turtles in captivity from different islands.

What you'll find here:

  • National Park information booth.
  • Charles Darwin Foundation.
  • Interpretation Center Van Straelen.
  • Galapaguitos turtles.
  • Turtles in middle age.
  • Turtles reproductive age.
  • Land Iguanas.
  • Prehistoric turtle shells.
  1. Beach Estación

Located near the Galapagos National Park, this beach has a mixture of organic shell and coral sand with an area of approximately 320 m2.

What can do here:

Mansa beach, perfect for a swim and snorkeling.

You can see here:

    • Marine Iguanas
    • Small Sea Lions
    • Small rays
    • Sally lightfoot crabs
    • Lava Lizard
    • Fish: Damsels, Sergeant, butterflies, old, parrotfish.
    • Birds: Pelicano coffee, finches, Canary Mary, frigates, lava gull.
    • Vegetation: black mangrove, Manzanillo trees, "salty" forest.


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