Galapagos

My Grandfather’s Travels Through Latin America with the National Symphony Orchestra in the 1950s and ’60s

Posted by on April 23rd, 2014
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When I was young, before I or anyone in my immediate family had been to South America, I remember hearing that my maternal grandfather, Howard Mitchell, had visited South America several times.  Originally from Iowa, he had left home at the age of 16 to study music at the Peabody Institute in Baltimore.  An accomplished […]

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Grassroots Conservation at Paz de las Aves Bird Refuge in Mindo, Ecuador

Posted by on April 14th, 2014
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Though Ecuador is a relatively tiny country, slightly smaller than the state of Nevada, it is home to a tremendous amount of biodiversity and natural beauty. From Marine Iguanas lounging on the volcanic Galapagos Islands off the Pacific Coast, to Andean Condors soaring over the central “Avenue of Volcanoes,” to Spider Monkeys hanging in the […]

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Galapagos evolution highlights: Darwin’s finches

Posted by on September 10th, 2013
Darwin's_finches_by_Gould

Darwin’s finches are the unlikely poster boys of evolution. Averaging 6 inches in height and employing a dull color scheme which ranges from brown to gray to olive, they are a far cry from the brazen giant tortoises  and the otherworldly marine iguanas. Surely, then, they are one of the true Galapagos evolution highlights, and […]

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Galapagos wildlife cruise: the Galapagos sea lion

Posted by on September 3rd, 2013
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When discussing my favorite animals in the Galapagos, the Galapagos Sea Lion comes a close second to the Galapagos Green Turtle. The sea lion is not an animal that I ever thought would end up being such a highlight for me in the Galapagos Islands before I went there for the first time, but this […]

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Discover Quito: not just a Galapagos stopover

Posted by on September 3rd, 2013
La Compania de Jesus - Quito (int3)

Your once-in-a-lifetime Galapagos itinerary will invariably include at least one night in Quito, the capital of Ecuador. More than likely you’ll spend two nights there – one before your Galapagos transfer and one after – so it really makes sense to take the time to discover Quito. Discover Quito’s geography Quito is the closest capital […]

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Luxury Galapagos cruise checklist: the marine iguana

Posted by on August 7th, 2013
Marine-Iguana-Espanola

The Galapagos aren’t your average tropical archipelago; instead they’re a menagerie of animals weird and wonderful, big and small, terrestrial and marine. Perhaps no creature is more ubiquitous, more creepy and more undoubtedly Galapagosian than the marine iguana. On your luxury Galapagos cruise you’ll be sure to see hundreds if not thousands of them, and […]

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Conference Highlights Galapagos Conservation Efforts

Posted by on July 15th, 2013

This past April I participated in the annual conference of the International Galapagos Tour Operators Association (IGTOA) in Miami.  I’ve been on the Board of IGTOA for 3 years, and the annual conference has been a great way to meet some of the people most actively involved in Galapagos conservation.   The funds that members […]

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Darwin and the Galapagos: Part 2

Posted by on June 25th, 2013
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If you’re planning a luxury Galapagos cruise it pays to know a bit about the history of the place. Last week’s blog looked at Darwin’s visit to the Galapagos in 1835. This week I examine what happened between then and 1859, when On the Origin of Species was published. It’s as much a tale of […]

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Darwin and the Galapagos: Part 1

Posted by on June 20th, 2013
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Darwin would not be who he is today were it not for the islands. Likewise, the islands would not be as coveted a destination as they are had Darwin not visited and written about them. But what really happened on that fabled trip in 1835? What did Darwin do and where did he go? And […]

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The Finest Galapagos Sailing Tour: the Mary Anne

Posted by on April 1st, 2013

On a recent trip to the Galapagos Islands, I boarded the beautiful Mary Anne, a First Class 16 passenger sailing vessel, and embarked on an out-of-this-world eight day naturalist cruise.   The experience was truly awe-inspiring.  We anchored in many of the picturesque highlight sites of the archipelago, ventured onto six different islands and had some […]

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