Bienvenida is Spanish for “welcome” and thestaff of World Discovery Safaris welcomes you on what, we hope, will be a most enjoyable and memorable wildlife and cultural experience in Galapagos Islands. This booklet has been designed to introduce you to these islands, acquaint you with its people, national parks and wildlife and to help you prepare for and get the most from your travel experience. When you selected World Discovery Safaris you chose a company with a long tradition of leadership in natural history related travel. We are proud that this has been accomplished without compromising the concepts and philosophies on which our company was founded. We believe that responsible travel programs must stress the conservation of ecosystems, provide an education for our travelers and an economic benefit for the local people. Our travel programs are greatly enhanced by the participation of the naturalist guides who share their knowledge and help us understand the social customs, conservation issues and philosophies of their countries. Interacting with them helps us to understand and appreciate people whose lives and cultures are often very different from our own.
World Discovery Safaris staff includes professionals in the sciences and education as well as travel. We work together to create an unforgettable, unique travel experience for you, and to produce supplementary informative materials, such as this booklet, to enhance your experience. We are here to answer your questions and look forward to your calls and e-mails because if you feel comfortable and knowledgeable before your departure, you will be free to enjoy your travel experience to the fullest. The information contained in this booklet is designed to assist as you prepare for your journey to the Galapagos Islands. The travel program you are about to depart on is an expedition in the true sense of the word and should not be undertaken casually. We wish for you the same excitement and awe we first experienced when we were introduced to the unique plant and animal life, geology, pristine beaches, underwater world and friendly people found only in the Galapagos Islands.
Is would be a huge understatement to simply say that the wildlife of the Galapagos is unique. Charles Darwin's observations of the plants and animals that are found here, their remarkable adaptation to this hostile environment, and the subtle variations between races of the same species living on different islands led directly to the development of the theory of evolution. The theory helps to explain how the complex living things on Earth have evolved from simple, singled-celled ancestors by the process of natural selection. Without a doubt, the most important event in the five centuries of human history on the Galapagos was Darwin's visit in 1835. However, even without Darwin, the tale of human contact with the Galapagos is a fascinating one, and over the years these enchanted islands have meant many things to many people.