Blog

Experts study the genetic history of Galápagos snakes

09Feb

The Massey University of New Zealand and the Galapagos National Park, in collaboration with Island Conservation, The University of California, Galapagos Conservancy and Galapagos Conservation Trust, have been conducting, since 2015, a study on the genetic history of Galapagos Snakes.

Last January, the third phase of this project began, which studies the evolution of endemic snake species in the islands of Isabela, Fernandina and Santa Cruz, through genetic tests. The process contemplates the separation of the genetic inheritance of each of the Galápagos species with its closest reference in continental Ecuador.

The snakes are predators of great importance in the archipelago, since they maintain the balance of populations of lava lizards, iguanas and birds.

The Galapagos National Park commented that the results of the study will allow a planned management in the future, considering that populations of snakes are affected by introduced species, such as cats and rats.

This new study shows that the Galapagos Islands are not only a travel and adventure destination in the world, but also a place of great importance for the scientific community at a global level.

Come to Galapagos and discover why these islands are so interesting for world scientists and why different non-governmental organizations strive to preserve them. If you are looking for Galapagos hotels or Galapagos tours, you can write us at ecolodge@casanaturahotel.com and ask about any of our programs or day trips to the most beautiful places on the islands. For us it will be a pleasure to be part of your upcoming adventure in the Galapagos Islands!

163 turtles raised in captivity return to Isabela Island

09Feb

The Galapagos National Park returned to its place of origin, in the area known as “Cinco Cerros” on Isabela Island, a group of 163 terrestrial turtles of the Chelonoidis guntheri species, after having been raised in captivity.

Prior to the release, the respective health examinations were carried out, their shells were marked with a special ink to be able to track them and a microchip was implanted with the data recorded in the reproduction program.

This activity is part of the project ‘Initiative for the Restoration of Giant Turtles’ which is developed with the support of Galapagos Conservancy. The Galapagos National Park maintains breeding programs in captivity with the mission of recovering the population of turtles in several islands of archipelago.

Galapagos hotels and cruise boats, including of course Casa Natura Galapagos Lodge, fully support the efforts done by the Galapagos National Park and international NGOs in helping the islands’ conservation. We believe projects of this nature contribute to the conservation and the tourist development of the archipelago

If you liked these places and wish to include them in your next adventure to Santa Cruz Island, Casa Natura Galápagos Lodge is the best option for you! If you are looking for Galapagos hotels or Galapagos tours, you can write us to ecolodge@casanaturahotel.com and ask about any of our programs or one day excursions to the most beautiful places in the islands. For us, it is a pleasure to be part of your experience!

MINISTRY OF TOURISM HEALTH INSURANCE ANNOUNCEMENT

26Jan

We inform you that in February of 2017, the National Assembly of Ecuador issued a decree in the Organic Law of Human Mobility, establishing as a new requirement for all visitors entering to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands to have an international travel insurance, either public or private valid for the entire duration of their trip in the country.

As specifically established in articles 53 and 56 of the Law mentioned, related to “Obligations of foreign persons entering the country as tourists, who must have public or private health insurance for the time of their stay in Ecuador in all the migratory categories, with the exception of the people who move in the border integration zones. This will be required starting on February 2018.

To read the Ministry of Tourism document, please click on the picture:

Ministry of Tourism Heath Insurance Announcement

With the above in mind, Via Natura strongly recommends to all its foreign tourists that in case they do not have health insurance that covers trips abroad and are planning to go to Ecuador starting in February, they acquire it in advance.

3 places you can’t miss during your visit to Santa Cruz Island!

25Jan

Santa Cruz is the most populated island of the archipelago. For this reason it has the largest number of Galapagos hotels, restaurants and shops. It also serves as a starting point for the most important tours in the Galapagos Islands. To get to this island, you must take a flight from Quito or Guayaquil to the airport on Baltra Island. At the exit of the airport you must take a bus that will take you to the Itabaca channel, then a ferry that will take you through the channel that connects both islands.

Casa Natura Galapagos Lodge offers transfer and assistance from the airport to the hotel. Our guests have the option to request this service and be accompanied during this journey.

Once on Santa Cruz Island, these are the places you can’t miss:

Charles Darwin Research Station:

It was created in 1964 and is operated by the Charles Darwin Foundation. It has a natural history interpretation center and executes educational tasks supporting the service of the Galapagos National Park. It is famous for the captive breeding of giant tortoises, called Galapagos. This station is also the center of operations of foreign scientists who come to the islands to deal with special research programs.

Here you can learn about Darwin’s Theory of Evolution, the expeditions he made and the species he studied to develop his theory.

Definitely you cannot leave the Galapagos Islands without knowing the importance of this place for the scientific community worldwide, and the work of the Charles Darwin Foundation for the conservation of species. For this reason, Casa Natura Galápagos Lodge includes a guided tour of Charles Darwin Station in all its Unforgettable Galapagos, Island Hopping and diving programs.

Tortuga Bay:

The beach receives this name, because it is a nesting site for turtles in the Galapagos Islands. In this place, tourists can enjoy the white sand and there is a probability of observing species such as: marine iguanas, seagulls, crabs, among others. Even with luck you can get to see blue-footed boobies. Tortuga Bay occupies the tenth place in the top of the best beaches in the world by Trip Advisor.

Casa Natura Galapagos lodge offers excursions to Tortuga Bay in the company of a naturalist guide. If you prefer, you can also explore this paradisiacal beach on your own and we will take you there and return you to the hotel after an unforgettable day.

El Garrapatero:

El Garrapatero beach is a paradise away from the stress and noise of the city. It is the best option in Santa Cruz to disconnect from everyday life and relax in contact with nature. Behind the beach there is a lagoon where you can find flamingos, black-necked ducks, Galapagos finches and migratory birds. If you are an adventure lover, you will love knowing that you can reach the beach by bicycle and practice kayaking and snorkeling there.

Our hotel is very close to this beach! Do not forget to include this destination in your visit to Santa Cruz Island and we will gladly take you to meet this place.

If you liked these places and wish to include them in your next adventure to Santa Cruz Island, Casa Natura Galápagos Lodge is the best option for you! If you are looking for Galapagos hotels or Galapagos tours, you can write us to ecolodge@casanaturahotel.com and ask about any of our programs or one day excursions to the most beautiful places in the islands. For us, it is a pleasure to be part of your experience!

Yellow alert is declared in the surroundings of Sierra Negra volcano

17Jan

The Galapagos National Park reported through a statement the yellow alert declaration in the surroundings of the Sierra Negra volcano on Isabela Island.

According to the statement, access to certain areas of Isabela Island, such as Chico volcano and Amarradero de Caballos, will be restricted from Wednesday, January 17, 2018. While the declaration is maintained, visitors or specialized guides will not be able to access to these areas.

This measure was taken by the Secretariat of Risk Management, because the volcano registered in recent weeks a clear increase in its activity characterized by increased seismic activity and continuous lifting of its floor.

This decision seeks to guarantee the safety of the people who come to the archipelago. Temporarily, only the visit to the areas Mirador 1, Mirador 2 and the circuit that joins the two viewpoints in the Sierra Negra volcano, will be allowed. The other tours and activities on Isabela Island are developing normally. Visitors can enjoy many of the wonders of this paradise without risk.

Going to Isabela Island is a must on your Galapagos tour! Casa Natura like many other Galapagos hotels can include a visit to this island in any of our Island Hopping programs. If you want to schedule tours to Isabela Island and many other incredible places in the Galápagos Islands, you can write us to

 

The Galapagos Islands get recognition at the World Travel Awards

10Jan

On Sunday, December 10, 2017, the World Travel Awards (WTA) took place. These awards are given each year to different tourist destinations, accommodations, operators, agencies and airlines, in order to reward and celebrate excellence across all sectors of the global travel and tourism industry.

On this occasion, Galápagos won the first place in the category “Leading Beach Destination in the world”, competing against important beach destinations such as Miami Beach, the Mayan Riviera, Cancun, San Andrés, Thailand, among others.

Casa Natura Galápagos Lodge congratulates the Galapagos Islands for this recognition, and hopes to contribute to the growth of the destination in a sustainable manner.

The first hammerhead shark breeding site in Galapagos is discovered

10Jan

Technicians from the Galapagos National Park identified for the first time a hammerhead shark breeding site. The discovery occurred during a follow-up mission in areas frequented by juvenile sharks. This mission began in 2009.

The breeding areas are places where adult sharks come to have their young, and these remain in place until they develop. This discovery is very important for the Galapagos and the region, because there are very few sites detected as hammerhead shark breeding areas in the Eastern Tropical Pacific.

This specise is highly susceptible to overfishing and is currently on the Red List of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), in the category of danger of extinction, due to its slow growth and low reproductive capacity.

The observation of hammerhead sharks is an activity that is carried out very frequently in the diving tours to Galapagos and that attracts thousands of tourists to the islands. Tourism agents and hotels in Galapagos, including Casa Natura Galápagos Lodge, are aware of the importance of caring for and respecting the habitat of this emblematic species of the archipelago.

Santa Fe Island, the ideal place to include in your Galapagos tour!

26Dec

With 3.9 million-year-old rock formations, Santa Fe Island is the oldest in the archipelago. It has a surface of 24km2 and offers its visitors one of the most beautiful scenarios in the Galapagos.

Due to its aridity and lack of fresh water sources, it is practically uninhabitable for human beings. Yet this island is a paradise for birds, sea lions and other unique species such as the land iguana of Santa Fé, which cannot be found anywhere else.

The daily tour to Santa Fe Island is one of the most requested activities when staying at Galapagos hotels and Casa Natura Galápagos Lodge this is no exception. The tour includes a trip to a hidden beach surrounded by volcanic rocks, ideal for swimming, diving and observing shark colonies and marine iguanas. The tour also includes a walk along a path that leads to a Cactus forest, where the view is just spectacular.

Going to Santa Fe is a must on your Galapagos tour! Our hotel can include a visit to this island in any of our Unforgettable or Island Hopping  programs in the enchanted isles. If you want to schedule a tour to Santa Fe or if you are looking for a diving tour in the Galapagos , you can write us to ecolodge@casanturahotel.com. We will be happy to help you plan your Galapagos trip!

Tame increases its flights to Galapagos

13Dec

From December 11, the Ecuadorian airline Tame will operate a new direct route between Quito and Baltra Island, without the usual stopover in the coastal city of Guayaquil.

This new itinerary includes three flights per week (Monday, Friday and Sunday) from Quito’s airport to the airport of Baltra which services the island of Santa Cruz, where most of the Galapagos hotels are located including Casa Natura Galapagos Lodge.

The Galapagos Islands are one of the main tourist attractions of Ecuador and Tame has it as a destination since 1964.

Between January and October of this year the airline has transported 97,463 passengers to the Baltra airport. TAME also has a frequency to the Airport of San Cristobal Island, which is located east of the archipelago.

Thank you so much for joining us throughout this year. On behalf of everyone who makes Casa Natura Galapagos Lodge, we wish you happy holidays, full of unity, peace and love.
Happy New Year!

Atlantic Productions presented documentary about the Galapagos Islands

13Dec

At the end of November the British documentary Mission Galapagos premiered in Quito. The documentary was in charge of the award-winning producer Anthony Geffen. The presentation was attended by President Lenin Moreno with his wife and also the ambassador of the United Kingdom in Ecuador, Katherine Ward.

The essence of this production is to show the natural environment of the islands. It also focuses on the natural problems that currently affect the archipelago and its species. The documentary, divided in 3 episodes, will be distributed globally by BBC Worldwide.

Through aerial, terrestrial and marine exploration, this work shows, with amazing image quality, the most hidden corners of this natural paradise of the world. It is hoped that this documentary will contribute to the growth of tourism in Galapagos, and generate awareness among its visitors towards using eco-friendly boats and hotels like Casa Natura Galapagos Lodge.

Thank you so much for joining us throughout this year. On behalf of everyone who makes Casa Natura Galapagos Lodge, we wish you happy holidays, full of unity, peace and love.
Happy New Year!