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Puerto Villamil Beach
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Playa Puerto Villamil is a beautiful beach on Isla Isabela situated by the island’s main town of Puerto Villamil. The white sand beach stretches for about 3 km, and is the longest of all the beaches in the Galapagos. The beach is lined with hotels ranging from budget cabañas to the luxurious. The beach has a pier with the popular Iguana Bar at its end, and an elevated lookout post on a point a bit further west.
Near the town are several salt water ponds, which are a haven for pink flamingos. All around you will find iguanas and giant tortoises, for which Isla Isabela is famous. In the distance, behind the town, but only 30 Km away is the still active volcano, Sierra Negra, which is one of a chain of five volcanos stretching from the north to the south of the island.
Cash is an important commodity on the Island! Few stores, hotels restaurants accept credit cards.
Beach activities include:
|Type of beach||White sand|
|Length of beach||1.8 mi / 3.0 km|
|Wind direction||Light on-shore|
|Restaurants and Cafes||Huge variety in town|
Eating out: There are lots of restaurants in town, but also many of the hotels have small restaurants of their own. Along the beach you will find several cool beachfront bars.
Snorkeling: Besides snorkeling among the corals in front of the beach and on the east side of Puerto Villamil Bay, there are loads of great spots for snorkeling. These include the islets Las Tintoreras which you can swim to from the beach, Concha de Perla a short walk from town, and Los Tuneles which is accessible by boat.
Scuba Diving: One of the dive centers (Isabela Dive Center, Scubadragon Dive Center) can take you out to dive at one of several popular dive sites (Tagus Cove, Vicente Roca Point, Cuatro Hermanos Rock, Union Rock, Roca Redonda, La Viuda, Tortuga Island, West Tortuga Island, Cape Marshall). Depending on which location you go to, you’ll see sea turtles, rays, barracuda, sharks and all variety of fish, possibly even Luidia Superba, which is a giant species of starfish that can grow to over 1 meter tip to tip.
Giant Tortoise: Just a few miles out of town, you can visit Campo refugio de Tortugas. This is a private area within the Galapagos National Park, where they breed and nurture these magnificent creatures. You can also camp there for $5 per head per night.
Hiking: Hike to the “Wall of Tears” where you’ll discover a wide variety of endemic wildlife, including massive Iguanas, giant tortoises and flamingos. This is about a 3 hour hike round trip. Along the way, you’ll see sea lions on the beach basking in the sun.
Volcanos: You can take tours to look into the crater of some of the Volcanos among the islands, and see the lava flows.