A long journey to get from UK to the Galapagos but absolutely worth it. Trying to describe our experience on the islands is a bit like trying to tell someone what a beautiful piece of music is like - you have just got to experience it yourself.
- What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?
Having never snorkelled in my life before I had a go from fantastic beach on the island of China Hat. I was joined by two sea lions who clearly just wanted to play.
Travelling by panga propelled by paddle through the mangroves enjoying the silence and being surrounded by birdlife. Watching the frantic activity of a shoal of fish as a heron flew low overhead. Seeing and above all hearing two sea lions sleeping and snoting in the branches of the mangroves - just unreal and truly wonderful.
Photographing Galapagos hawks, and iguanas really close up and seeing a Galapagos flycatcher sitting inside a friends lens cover.
- What did you think of your group leader?
In Quito Gloria was quietly efficient. Our half day city was interesting but a bit indigestible with just too much info to take in.
Sylvia our naturalist and guide on the islands was first class; patient and knowledgeable she shared her enthusiasm freely and with great good humour.
- Do you have any advice for potential travellers?
Travel as light as you can, the cabins on boeard are small with little storeage space. We used factor 50 sunscreen and still managed to get burned. Forget about late nights and parties, by 8.30pm you'll just be so tired bed is the only real option.
Be prepared for early mornings and every moment filled with stimulating activity.
- Is there anything else you would like to add?
We found the hotel Sierra Madre in Quito a bit cold and damp. Tha staff were great but overall service was poor. Quito is an exciting city; use taxis at night and make sure that you have the full name and address of the hotel with you- our taxi driver got lost so we had an evening tour of the city for $5.00 for the four of us.
If you're thinking about going to the Galapagos Islands do it asap as tourism is increasing apace.