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Santa Fe

Located about 20 km southeast of Santa Cruz, the small island of Santa Fe is a popular destination for day trips and cruise itineraries. The trail consists of two loops separated by a walk of a couple hundred meters.  The first loop, a 300-meter circuit, takes you to one of the tallest stands of opuntia cactus in the archipelago, some reaching heights of over 10 meters. Look for the elusive Santa Fe subspecies of Land Iguana. You also might see a park project of fire ant control.

The other loop goes through a Palo Santo Forest, where you can also look for Land Iguanas.

Santa Fe is a home to one of the two remaining species of endemic Galapagos rice rats, although it’s very unlikely that you’ll see one. There was once a species of Giant Tortoise on the island, but they have unfortunately gone extinct.

Santa Fe is a popular day trip from Puerto Ayora because of the excellent snorkeling in the cove. Note that only cruise ships are allowed to land on the island itself: if you’re a day-tripper, you’ll come, snorkel and return without seeing the iguanas. It’s also a popular SCUBA diving site.

Trail Difficulty: 2/5. It occasionally gets steep.

Highly Probable to see:

  • Marine Iguana
  • Sea Lions
  • Finches
  • Mockingbird

Probable to see:

  • Land Iguana
  • Galapagos Hawk

Possible to see

  • Galapagos Snake
  • Galapagos Rice Rat

Here are some related tips to help plan your trip to Galápagos Island Visitor Sites: Southern Island Visitor Sites, San Cristóbal, Central Island Visitors Sites, North Seymour Island, Darwin & Wolf, Mosquera Islet, Rábida, León Dormido/Kicker Rock, Floreana and Pinta.

03 Sep 2010

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