If you’re a travel junkie with an insatiable wanderlust, then a Galapagos vacation is probably high up there on your bucket list. There’s really nothing like the serene, tropical waters of the Galapagos Islands to calm your nerves and help you decompress from the everyday stresses of life. So how do you prepare for an experience like that? It can’t all be hunky dory the moment your step off the plane. And what if you spend all of that time and money on a trip that doesn’t go well? If you’re going to have this once in a lifetime opportunity, you need to do it right! So here’s some tips on how to plan your visit to the Galapagos Islands.

  1. Set a budget. We all know that traveling is expensive, and if you’re not careful, you may have no idea how expensive a trip is until you get home and look at your most recent bank statement. That’s why you need to set a budget for your trip and you need to be strict with yourself. You need to decide exactly how much money you are willing to spend and be sure that it’s an amount you can afford to spend. Once you have that figure, you’re going to want to subtract the cost of airfare, cabs, lodging and any recreation that you are determined to experience. Once you’ve subtracted those expenses, you know exactly how much money you will have to spend on food and shopping each day. You can take that much cash with you each day so that you won’t have the option of exceeding your budget.
  2. Do your research. Before you go anywhere, you’re going to want to know a bit about the terrain. You want to have a basic understanding of the history, the current political climate, the cultural rites and even a bit of the language. Simply knowing how to say please and thank you in your host’s language can get you very far. If you’re in the Galapagos, those words are “por favor” and “gracias.” If there are any major concerts or festivals happening around the time of your visit, you will want to try and plan your dates around those. Any opportunity to experience the Galapagos Islands light up in all their glory is an opportunity you won’t want to miss for the world. So do yourself a favor and get acquainted with the goings on before you set your plans in stone.
  3. Hire a travel guide. Once you’ve done your basic research and outlined the main stops on your trip, you’re going to want to connect all of the dots with some real guided learning. You will get so much more out of your trip if you come back knowing a lot more than you did when you left. For example, if you don’t go with a guide likeNature Galapagos & Ecuador, will you really know how the culture differs from one island to the next? Probably not.