Alone in the world – Tortuga Bay, Galápagos Islands

We spent 14 days in the Galápagos Islands, a decent amount of time I think, to be able to see what this unique part of the world has to offer. One of our favorite experiences was Tortuga Bay.

Hardly a hidden gem, this beautiful beach can be easily reached from Puerto Ayora, and if you go early you can admire the view, the wildlife, swim and sunbathe as if you were alone in the world.

Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

Reaching Tortuga Bay

To reach Tortuga Bay, you need to walk on a paved trail for about 45 minutes. The trail itself is quite nice, and almost empty if you go early in the morning – say 6-7am. You’ll only encounter joggers and small iguanas on the way :).
 
The best part about going in the morning is being able to experience the magic without hoards of tourists. As you reach the first beach, stop for a moment to admire the view: the waves crashing on the shore; the beautiful birds flying elegantly and then diving into the ocean; the amazingly still iguanas who are not bothered by anything, not even intrusive tourists trying to capture an up close picture of them.
Reaching Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
On the way to Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

Swim and sunbathe in the company of iguanas

Although the first beach is not really recommended to swim in and few people choose to do so, there is another one, smaller and more secluded, which is absolutely perfect for sunbathing and swimming. Oh, and for spotting baby sharks :).
Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
 
Every time we were walking back to the trail, magic happened: the sun created sparkles in the ocean and beautifully lightened the birds who in return put on an amazing show in the water, in the air, and on the beach. I can’t really explain why, but every time I walked back to the trail, I felt like I was walking on a cloud.
 
Thankfully, Tortuga Bay, although a touristic attraction has not been transformed into a touristic place. There are no chairs or food stalls, just pure nature, and the fascinating wildlife: iguanas, pelicans, crabs, some sharks here and there :).
Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
 
Although we don’t tend to revisit a place, we went back to Tortuga Bay several times. I know I said this before, but I want to emphasize that the experience is truly unforgettable as long as you are (almost) alone, so go early :).
Tortuga Bay in Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
 

How and Where to

Where to stay: We stayed at Twin Eco Lodge which is located further from the center, but worth it for the serenity of the place. Also, the hosts were great, even offering us fruits from their garden. 
How we got there: If you are staying in the center, you can easily walk to the trail. Ask around for directions, everybody knows where the trail begins. If you are staying further you might need a taxi.
When we went: I think it’s clear by now that going in the morning is the best time :).
What to take: There’s no entrance fee, but you do need to register at the entrance. Bring plenty of SPF, waterand food. As I said, there are no food stalls and if you spend a few hours there, you will need supplies :).
 
That’s a wrap. I hope you’ve enjoyed my post. If you have questions, or you want to compliment/critique me, shoot. I want to hear from you.
 
PS: There will be more posts coming, as we spent 14 days in the Galápagos Islands so stay tuned.
Photography by Bertrand Delvaux.
 
23 Responses
  • LeAnna
    July 23, 2016

    Your photos are stunning! It looks like it could have been a magazine shoot! And the Iguanas! I know they wouldn’t do anything, but I think I’d be slightly nervous about any hungry lizards next to me sun bathing! ;)

    • atunitsirc2014
      July 24, 2016

      Thanks a lot, LeAnna (beautiful name btw). I was scared by the iguanas in the beginning, but after a while, you get used to them. Plus, they barely move, they just sit there, as still as can be. It was fascinating to watch them…from the far :).

  • danik the explorer
    July 23, 2016

    OMG! I love the photos and that dress you are wearing is totally awesome! Love this post!

    • atunitsirc2014
      July 24, 2016

      Thanks a lot, Danik :)

  • Brenda Tolentino
    July 23, 2016

    It looks very secluded in Tortuga Bay and definitely worth a long visit and relax. Iguanas, everywhere! I wonder if they get very close to you? Anyway, it looks like an ideal beach escape while enjoying watching the animals in their natural habitat.

    • atunitsirc2014
      July 24, 2016

      They don’t get too close. It’s actually the tourist that invade their space more, unfortunately. Indeed, Tortuga Bay is perfect to relax, even with iguanas roaming around :).

  • Tamara Elliott
    July 24, 2016

    I was lucky enough to do a week long cruise through the Galapagos – what an amazing experience it was! Such a special place, glad you found it so magical as well!

    • atunitsirc2014
      July 24, 2016

      Doing a cruise was one of the things we missed in the Galapagos Islands. It will have to be for next time. Which islands did you visit?

  • Hannah Finch
    July 24, 2016

    Those iguanas! Tortuga Bay looks like a true untouched paradise. You’ve inspired me to visit, that’s for sure!

    • atunitsirc2014
      July 24, 2016

      Thanks, Hannah and I’m glad I inspired you :)

  • anna
    July 24, 2016

    Great photos! So dreamy!! Sadly, we didn’t get to go to the Galapagos when we were in Ecuador. Just another reason to head there again!

  • atunitsirc2014
    July 24, 2016

    Thanks, Anna. We hesitated because of how expensive it is, but in the end ,we thought it was worth it. And it was :).
    Where did you go in Ecuador? I was in Cuenca, Quito, and Cotopaxi.

  • Megan
    July 24, 2016

    I can understand why you went back to visit often. I love the tip of going first thing in the morning to beat the crowds. Some beautiful pictures too!

    • atunitsirc2014
      July 25, 2016

      Thank you Megan :)

  • Jenna
    July 25, 2016

    I’ve always wanted to visit the Galápagos Islands–it looks like such an amazing spot! Chilling on the beach with the iguanas sounds like a perfect day. Gorgeous photos and it looks like you had a wonderful time!

    • atunitsirc2014
      July 25, 2016

      Thanks Jenna, it was pretty awesome :)

  • Jen Joslin
    July 26, 2016

    The Galapagos are a dream destination for me! I love going on early morning walks, and this would definitely make for an epic one! Your pictures are amazing :)

    • atunitsirc2014
      July 26, 2016

      Thanks a lot Jen :)

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