Santa Cruz Island

Mar 23, 2018 - National Geographic Islander

Today we visited my home island, Santa Cruz. Puerto Ayora town holds the largest population and it is nice to see how people coexist with nature here. In the morning we visited the giant tortoise-breeding center, our guests learned about the most successful program run by the Galapagos National Park, and had time to explore town. We boarded buses and headed towards the highlands. First we crossed a lava tunnel, then went to visit a local farm, and, after a delicious lunch, our guests had the opportunity to see the Santa Cruz giant tortoises in their natural environment. What a wonderful day, so different and at the same time educational and inspiring. We can all help to protect this unique archipelago and keep it like this for the generations to come!

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About the Author

Vanessa Gallo


Vanessa Gallo’s grandparents arrived in the Galápagos Islands in 1936, making her the third generation of her family to live and work in this magical archipelago. She left the islands for the capital city of Quito for high school, where she discovered that learning foreign languages was one of her main interests. Coming from a family of naturalist guides, it was not a surprise that she also became one at the age of 17. Vanessa left the islands once again for Switzerland, where she earned a diploma in tourism and strengthened her language skills and knowledge of the travel industry. She has also travelled extensively to destinations including as Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama, Peru, Canada, the Canary Islands, Mauritius, and many European countries.

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