Galapagos is an archipelago comprised of 19 islands and located 1,000 km away from the coastline of Ecuador. It sits comfortably in a marine area where three ocean currents meet, which accounts for its vast marine ecosystem (one of the largest in the world today). There is also considerable seismic and volcanic activity in the islands.
The relative isolation of Galapagos has made it one of the most biologically diverse wildlife reserves in the entire world. It is home to unusual plant and animal life, including giant tortoises, marine iguanas, endemic trees and gigantic cacti, among others. In fact, the islands’ vast biodiversity contributed largely to Charles Darwin’s initial research about evolution and natural selection, way back in 1835.
This is why Galapagos is a popular itinerary for scientists and biologists—because it is unrivaled in terms of biodiversity and geological activity.