Los Gemelos or the Twin Craters are found on opposite sides of the road from Puerto Ayora and Baltra. This name is a metaphor. These formations are not actually craters. They were formed by the collapse of underground material in fissures and chambers. It is stunning.
The highlands of Santa Cruz can be reached by bus from Puerto Ayora. They are richly green and contrast beautifully with the lower, dry islands. The predominant vegetation of the highlands is the forest Scalesia trees, which creates the rich green color. Walking through the lava tubes underground, which are over half a mile in length, is an amazing, surreal experience.
A short distance from Puerto Villamil is the Tintoreras Islet which houses a wide range of wildlife. The turquoise waters of the Tintoreras Islet are home to white-tip reef sharks, Galapagos penguins and marine turtles. One of the few places where marine iguanas are able to reproduce is on one of its beaches, which is surrounded by mangroves.
At 9 x 10 kilometers, the Sierra Negra Volcano is home to the largest basaltic caldera of Galapagos. It offers stunning views, the chance to see up to 7 species and a rich display vegetation. Evidence of recent volcanic activity can be seen on the caldera's north side, which was formed in 2005.
Just outside Puerto Villamil, you will find the Wetlands of Isabela Island. The Wetlands are made up of mangroves, swamps, lagoons, and mangroves. They house a number of rare bird species, including common stilts and whimbrels as well as white-cheeked pintails and gallinules. You can visit the Wetlands by foot, following a path through the swamps.
This center was established to protect animals during their first years from foreign species like donkeys and pigs. The center collects giant tortoise eggs and keeps them there for five years until they can be released into their natural environment.
Mangle Point is a great place to see the incredible wildlife and views on Fernandina Island's Coast. You can snorkel to your heart's content at this small inlet along Fernandina Island's coast. Here you can also see curious penguins and playful sea lions. Also, get a glimpse at the home of flightless cormorants.
This bay is located on the island's north coast and consists of two distinct coves. It has spectacular sea life. Here you might see seahorses and sea turtles as well as the fascinating Mola mola (sunfish). This bay is ideal for snorkeling and diving.
Egas Port, also known as James Bay is home to the Galapagos Hawks and Galapagos Lava Lizards. This trail leads to beautiful tide pools and grottos filled with fauna. The sun shines on the Galapagos fur sea-lions. This area is great for snorkeling.
Espumilla Beach is home to many marine iguanas as well as Sally Lightfoot crabs. The hunting herons perform the dance of predator-prey on the crabs. Snorkeling is highly recommended due to the abundance of marine life, including moray eels and sharks.
Buccaneer Cove is testament to the fact Santiago Island was once home to British buccaneers. The protected bay was used by the pirates to repair and stockpile tortoise meat, among other things. It is a stunning sight to see the steep cliffs where hundreds of seabirds perch on the red sand beach.
A half-mile trail (0.5km) leads to this white sand coral beach. It winds through mangroves full of land birds. Here you can find red-footed and swallow-tailed birds, as well as Nazca boobies. Further along the path, you will find tidal swimming pools where sea-lions play. The end of the path offers a stunning view from a cliff.
North Seymour Island is home to magnificent frigatebirds, blue-footed bobies and Galapagos sea Lions. Submarine lava and sediment layers formed the island. These layers were lifted by tectonic activity. It is known for its dry vegetation zone.