Galapagos Wrap Up
Day 7 and 8 – May 30 and 31
We are home from the Galapagos. Our day started in San Cristobal around 6:00AM MST (8:00 AM EST). We did not need to be up that early but we just naturally woke up at that time. We had breakfast, repacked our bags, and hung around the hotel till our pick up time of 11:30 AM MST to take us to the airport. It was a short ride to the San Cristobal airport, were we waited for our 1:30 PM MST flight back to Quito, Ecuador. We arrived in Quito around 5:00 PM CST (6:00 PM EST). We then had about a four-hour layover till our flight back home. Our flight to Atlanta left at 11:30 PM CST (12:30 AM EST May 31). We arrived in Atlanta at 5:00 AM EST, were we had another layover before our flight to Cleveland. I tried to nap in the Delta lounge, because I didn’t sleep on the plane. We left Atlanta on a 10:00 AM EST flight and arrived in Cleveland at 11:45 AM EST. After collecting our luggage and car, we ran through a drive-thru for lunch before picking up our dog Teddy from my mom’s house. From there we had a three-hour drive home to Dayton. We got home around 5:00PM EST. We went to bed around 8:30 PM EST. In total we were up for about 36 hours.
Overall, it was nice to go to the Galapagos once, but I don’t feel I need to go again. If I had the trip to do over, I would do the cruise route instead of the land tour. The land tour had too much wasted time in traveling to ports to get boats and the travel between islands. At least on a cruse much of the travel between islands would occur in the evening.
If you plan on going to the Galapagos here are a few things you should know. Remember you will need a lot of sunscreen. Jim and I used one full bottle of SPF 70 sunscreen between the two of us for 6 days. You must apply the sunscreen often. They get 12 hours of sunlight; in this case it was from 6:00AM to 6:00PM every day. If you do decide to go to the Galapagos remember to pack a roll of toilet paper for yourself, since most of the public restrooms do not have toilet paper in them. Also, you don’t flush toilet paper in the Galapagos, you through it in a trashcan in the bathroom/stall; because their plumbing can’t handle it. When you transfer between islands (boat or plane), your luggage is search for fruit, nuts, seeds, sand, rocks, and coral because they don’t want species of any type transferred between islands. They will put a special zip-tie on your luggage after inspection to show it was inspected. They also have contraband sniffing dogs at each port of entry to ensure nothing was missed. Finally, if you think you will have cell service or internet, think again. The cell service and internet on all the islands is horribly spotty and slow at best. And, no, internet is not better at the hotels, we were lucky if the Wi-Fi reached our room.
I’m glad I went to the Galapagos; it was an experience. I personally don’t think I have been that close to wild animals before, or near animals they just don’t really care if people are around or not. If you get the change to go, go but do the cruise.