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How to Get to the Galapagos From Ecuador

Are you planning a trip to the Galapagos Islands? This post is all about how to get to the Galapagos from Ecuador.

How to get to the Galapagos from Ecuador

The Galapagos Islands are one of the main reasons people travel to Ecuador. Over 215,000 tourists visit the Galapagos each year. But first they have to stop on the mainland – let’s learn more about that.

Download your free Galapagos packing list.

How to Get to the Galapagos From Ecuador

The best way to get to the Galapagos Island from Ecuador is by plane. Flights leave from one of two cities:

  1. Quito (in the Andes Mountains) Mariscal Sucre International Airport (airport code UIO)
  2. Guayaquil (on the coast) Jose Joaquin de Olmedo International Airport (airport code GYE).

There are no direct international flights to the Galapagos Islands.


The city of Quito in the Andes Mountains

There are three airlines that offer flight to the Galapagos from mainland Ecuador, LAN, Tame, and Avianca.

The flight from Quito to the Galapagos Islands takes about 2 hrs, it usually makes a stop in Guyaquil. The flight from Guayaquil is a little shorter, about an hour and a half.

Depending on your Galapagos travel plans you will land in one of two airports:

  1. Seymour Airport also called the Galapagos Ecological Airport (airport code GPS) on Baltra Island
  2. San Cristobal Airport (airport code SCY) on San Cristobal Island

Your tour provider will arrange your flights to the Galapagos from mainland Ecuador.

What About Getting to the Galapagos Islands by Boat?

When people ask how to get to the Galapagos from Ecuador they may think getting there by boat is an option. In the past this may have been the case but now air travel is the way to go.


Cruise ship in the Galapagos

Cruises to the Galapagos are not offered from the mainland. They are offered once you arrive in the Galapagos. It’s best to book your cruise before travelling to the Galapagos.

There are special requirements for those who want to sail a private yacht to the Galapagos, and you can’t disembark at National Park visitor sites from your own boat.

Travel to the Galapagos by cargo ship is not recommended. This could take 3 days (with very basic accommodations) and cost around the same as a flight.

Flying to the Galapagos is the most common and most recommended travel option.

Learn more about cruising the Galapagos Northern and Central Islands, and Santa Cruz, Floreana & Espanola Islands

How to Pack for a Flight to the Galapagos Islands

Packing for the Galapagos is a little different than for most other locations.

Getting to the Galapagos from Ecuador means packing light (a carry-on bag at 7 kg/15 lbs, a piece of luggage at 20 kg/44 lbs, and a small camera bag or purse, per person). It also means keeping some restrictions in mind.

Check the list of permitted, restricted and non-permitted products. And don’t forget to download your free Galapagos packing list.

It’s best to talk with sales staff about any questions or concerns you may have about flights or packing guidelines.

Getting to the Galapagos Islands from Ecuador

Read more about Galapagos Penguins and sea lions. And have a look at the gorgeous Scalesia Galapagos Lodge.

Still have questions about how to get to the Galapagos from Ecuador? Feel free to ask in the comment section below or contact the sales staff today.

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