Welcome to the Galapagos Islands!
As the animals on the Galapagos Islands have never been hunted by humans, they did not develop the fear nor the instincts to run away from us. This is one of the only place left on earth where humans and animals can interact and live harmoniously together. Therefore priority is given to the protection and conservation of wildlife and nature on the Galapagos Islands.
The Galapagos Islands are situated at the equator at around 940 kilometres from the Ecuadorian coast with 19 large main islands and 100 smaller islands. 97 percent of the land area and 99 percent of the surrounding water bodies of the Galapagos Islands are national parks which are regulated under strict environmental protection laws. The islands are formed by ongoing seismic and volcanic activity which spread across 120,000 km² of the ocean with 8000 km² of land area. The islands in the archipelago like Fernandina Island are relatively young as compared to other oceanic islands with high levels of volcanic activity. San Cristóbal Island located in the east is only 4 million years old, while submerged underwater islands in the archipelago are estimated to be around 5 to 14 million years old. Some of the species found on the islands have ancestors dating back to 3 to 4 million years while only five islands are inhabited.