No, you won’t find a ship painted green plying the Galapagos (that we know of), but in this fragile environment, you want a Galapagos Islands cruise that employs green environmental practices. Everything we humans do can have an impact on the flora and fauna of the area, so you want to choose a company that lessens that impact as much as possible during your vacation.
Luxury Cruising That Is Eco-Friendly
In this part of the world, you don’t have to choose between luxury and going green. In fact the higher-level and more experienced the tour company is, the more likely it is that they will be an environmental leader.
You can start by seeing what kind of company they keep. Go Galapagos – Kleintours is a proud partner of Galapagos Conservancy, for example. The Galapagos Conservancy works to balance both conservation and community in one of the world’s most remarkable ecosystems. Through support from its members, this organization works to preserve, protect, and restore the Galapagos Islands and their extraordinary marine and terrestrial biodiversity. They accomplish this through three main conservation programs: Giant Tortoise Restoration, Ecosystem and Species Restoration, and Education for Sustainability.
Go Galapagos also works hand-in-hand with the Galapagos National Park Service, an institution that is tasked with protecting the islands from invasive species and keeping most of the land off-limits to the shoes of tourists.
On this ship itself, all toiletries provided should be biodegradable and made from natural components. So should the cleaning products used during housekeeping. On the Go Galapagos cruises, you will find a thermos in each cabin to be refilled at one of the vessel’s potable water stations, thus avoiding the use of plastic bottles.
Their vessels are also equipped with sophisticated water treatment plants to desalinate, filter, and purify water for consumable use. The decor of their ships is acquired from sustainable-certified teak plantations.
Did you know that certain foods, such as berries, can’t be served on Galapagos cruise ships? This is to ensure that invasive species don’t have any way of getting onto the islands by floating there or coming in on someone’s shoes. The best ships go a step further, planning meals in a way that will reduce kitchen waste.
Being a Galapagos Good Visitor
During lectures and excursions in the islands, the top naturalist guides also try to expand the knowledge of the guests in order to point out the importance of conservation, for this unique island cluster that is celebrating its 40th birthday as a UNESCO World Heritage site. Professional guides will explain how the various species live in the islands, how to reduce the usage of plastic that ends up in our oceans, and how to be more aware how continental elements of waste have affected archipelagos. Like many threatened areas of the world, human omissions are having a detrimental effect because of climate change and pollution.
A trip to the Galapagos is not a typical vacation. Some visitors say it changed their life forever, making them more sensitive to their personal impact on the planet and important all species are in interconnected nature. This is not a classroom learning experience though. You’ll get a pampered five-star experience with Go Galapagos, but you’ll learn much of what you bring back after getting up close with lizards, mammals, reptiles, and fish on land and in the water. By choosing a company that integrates sustainable practices in everything they do, you can help preserve the integrity of the islands for generations to come.