Fed up of the same old package deals in the same old places - the endless crowd of sunburned people wearing bad holiday clothes - the overpriced food - the never ending all you can eat buffets? Maybe it’s time for something a little different. Like rediscovering what a break can really be like with Galapagos holidays. The Galapagos Islands, seat of Darwin’s discovery that life on earth is all evolved from ancestral forms, are some of the most astonishing natural areas of the planet – volcanic wonder lands, filled with a diversity of species so vibrant and colourful that it’s hard to know where to start looking.
While the Islands are wild, of course, a person wishing to see them doesn’t have to rough it. Not with specialty tour operators like Jacada Travel, where Galapagos holidays arranged by them give trips to the seat of natural history a whole new dimension. Jacada, and companies like it, run super luxury yachts and boats around the legendary atolls – giving the traveller a chance to get close to Nature’s most impressive wonders without actually having to get his or her feet dirty. The Galapagos Islands open to this kind of visitor like the most exquisitely photographic book, birds, mammals and reptiles displaying their abundant and bizarre forms as though posing specifically for the travellers and their cameras.
Galapagos holidays don’t lack for catering, either. Just because a person has gone to the ends of the earth to be close to Nature, doesn’t mean he or she should be short of a drink and a good feed. Plying their routes through the Islands, the luxury boats tend to have a top international chef or two below deck, whipping up a series of culinary delights to keep the strength of the delighted tourists at optimum level. In a way, it’s like having a private luxury hotel at one’s permanent disposal, taking one directly to the locations one wishes to see.
The Galapagos Islands are pretty remote, which is a part of their charm. Galapagos holidays, though, don’t have to lack for excitement. Jump off points for travelling to the Islands are generally included in the tours, which means travellers get a taste of the refined city life of Quito (Ecuador) at the beginning and end of their voyage. Serious wildlife lovers van even book combined trips taking in not only the Galapagos Islands but the legendary Amazon Basin as well – a feast of diversity and landscape that would satisfy even the most ardent amateur naturalist. Just remember to put the camera down from time to time and take in the full glory of the scenery without interposing a lens between the eye and reality.
Galapagos holidays really are a world away from the institutionalised bun fight that is most package holidays. What’s the point, after all, in trekking half way around the world just to sit in a compound drinking beer with a load of sunburned loudmouths? It’s time to reclaim the holiday for what it once was – a chance to see, and do, something spectacular and there’s certainly nothing more spectacular than the Galapagos Islands.