I had dreamed of visiting the Galápagos for nearly ten years. This past September, I was able to finally make the trip of a lifetime. I got to swim with sea lions, hang out with wise old giant tortoises, hike on spectacular cliff trails next to iguanas and exotic birds. I even experienced the thrill of swimming with a white-tip reef shark and snorkeling with adorable sea lions. It was a dream come true for this wildlife lover.
The Galápagos Islands are located in the Pacific 600 miles west of mainland Ecuador on the equator. The stops on the seven-day Ecoventura cruise I took included San Cristobal, Santa Cruz, Española, Isabela, and Floreana. Cruising allows visitors to reach remote parts of the islands for best wildlife viewing. The government of Ecuador and the Galápagos National Park, which encompasses 97% of land on the islands, ensure that nature is preserved in all its glory.