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Raise your hand if National Geographic and the Discovery Channel are the first two channels listed your faves…yep, that’s me. Being a major nature buff, I am always intrigued by those “infrequently traveled” destinations. My fascination with the Galapagos Islands started many years ago when I worked at a travel agency during college. It was one of those places I thought I would never be able to afford to go. And even after all these years, it has still remained on my bucket list.

There are 13 main islands and 17 minor islands in the Galapagos Islands. The Galapagos Islands are set along the equator; 600 miles off the west coast of Ecuador. As far as the weather goes, the Galapagos Islands is almost always sunny and the cool sea breezes set the stage for the perfect temperature. I recommend traveling between December and May. In the Galapagos Islands, you will find clear turquoise seas, beaches with pink, black, white and olive green sands, mangrove lagoons and cactus forests. Just my kind of place!

It’s amazing that these islands have never been part of a continent, and unlike other similar islands like Hawaii, the Galapagos Islands are one of the more recent islands discovered by man and even more recently inhabited by man. Although these islands draw thousands of visitors every year from scientists, to naturalists, and photographers, I believe the Galapagos Islands are the perfect spot to enjoy your honeymoon or a romantic getaway. And that is where I come in…

Iguana Crossing Boutique Hotel

Where I Would Stay

Iguana Crossing Boutique Hotel is a beachfront property located on Isabela Island. Isabela is a much quieter island than Santa Cruz, the “main” Galápagos island. The hotel is decorated with native materials from the island and demonstrates a beautiful blend of nature and modernity. This boutique property has 14 rooms which are all decorated differently. Rooms are equipped with a TV, DVD player, air-conditioning, a small fridge, safe, and a large bathroom. A delicious breakfast, included in the rate, is served either indoors or outdoors. I would go up to the roof terrace for a cocktail or a dip in the jacuzzi, or lounge by the pool in front of the hotel. The views are pretty impressive.

Galapagos Sea Lion

What I Would Do

I would do it all! I would definitely recommend a tour if you are visiting for the first time. If you are planning a trip with your significant other, then this place is perfect. Galapagos is about not having to sacrifice or compromise. Since the Galapagos Islands are known for wildlife, this is definitely something you should be into. Here, pink flamingos are living side-by-side with penguins. Because large mammals can’t really survive here, the nature is diverse and relatively untouched. You can hike, lay on the beautiful beaches, spend some time doing water sports, or go shopping.

I have plans to go within the next 5 years and I am hoping I finally get the chance to scratch this one off my list! What is on your “travel” bucket list?

Shanna Jones

Shanna is the co-founder and editor of Urban Swank. She focuses on food and travel.

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