Galapagos Tour: Santa Cruz Highlands, El Garrapatero Beach

Tour/Activity in Santa Cruz Island, Ecuador

About this activity

Day Tour featuring the highlands of Santa Cruz and El Garrapatero Beach

Your Travel Experience with Galapagos PRO

Santa Cruz Highlands

This tour takes you from the port city of Puerto Ayora into the highlands of Santa Cruz. As you venture into the higher altitude areas, you will notice the changes in the vegetation as the climate becomes wetter and warmer. The earth in the upper altitudes is rich in minerals. Coffee plantations and fruit orchards line the streets. Here you can observe the famous Galapagos giant tortoises in the wild.

The Scalesia zone between 250 and 600 meters altitude offers the opportunity to discover many endemic tree species not found in the Ecuadorean jungle. The twin craters, Los Gemelos, are also in this zone. However, they are not craters in the technical sense, rather 70 meter vertical gullies, carpeted with lush vegetation.

El Garrapatero Beach on Santa Cruz

In the afternoon take the trail to El Garrapatero Beach, a 1.5 kilometer white sandy beach surrounded by mangroves. A small lagoon near the beach is often frequented by a flamboyance of Flamingos. The vegetation in his arid zone includes the Opuntia cactus and the wonderful smelling palo santo trees.

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