Definitely, a trip to one of the most famous archipelago in the world is an “expensive” trip, but it is worth every dollar you invest in it, and it should never be compared to a Caribbean cruise.

If we want to compare a trip to the “enchanted islands” let’s do it between an Island hopping tour or a Cruise with some other destination, we could do it with a trip to Hawaii or perhaps to some remote place in Alaska. If we can imagine a trip to these characteristics, we can imagine why “Galapagos is worth what it costs.”

seeing the galapagos giant tortoises

A traveler seeing one of the towering giant Galapagos tortoises.

During this post we want you to know some of the most important reasons why a trip to Galapagos is “expensive”, from our point of view as experts in this tourist destination in Ecuador and South America.


As you know, the Galapagos Islands are located in the Pacific Ocean, 1000 km / 621 miles off the Ecuadorian coast. The Marine Reserve has an approximate area of ​​133,000 km² / 51,000 mi², which, also, thanks to the equatorial line that crosses it, the archipelago offers  2 travel seasons or climatic seasons, optimal for tourism throughout the year.

galapagos the birdwatching and natural laboratory of the world

Sighting of endemic Galapagos species throughout the year.

warm-season that will allow you to observe the emergence of life in its most natural state, and another dry-season where you can observe the splendor of marine species.

Now that you know where the Galapagos Islands are located, you will understand why it is considered a natural paradise, and that it, unfortunately, has certain disadvantages.


The supply of essential products in the Islands is mostly carried out by sea from the Guayaquil port. It is a trip that lasts around 3 days, and in which around 200 containers are transported that must wait on board the ships until all the containers have been shipped, this can take around 7 days.

However, you must also consider the time it takes to disembark all this cargo on each of the islands: San Cristóbal and Santa Cruz, this could take between 7 to 15 days approximately. That is, all merchandise, supplies, and others can take between 21 and 30 days to reach the islands, from their shipment.

Can you imagine how much this logistics costs? The cost is really high, and for this reason, is that any product on the islands costs around 100% more than in mainland Ecuador.

supply and logistic to the Galapagos Islands

Photo taken: “El Comercio” newspaper archive

It is important to add that the sea is not the only way to get supplies on the islands. There is another faster way, the airway. However, the disadvantage of this is the limitation of the cargo quotas offered by commercial airlines, since there are no exclusive cargo planes.

This form of supply is the least used on a large scale, due to its high cost of approximately $ 1.50 USD per kilo. In such a way that any product transported in this way from Continental Ecuador, will come to reflect this value in the final price.

Now, how much do you think it would cost to supply a cruise ship in Galapagos? Indeed, it would be expensive, since it cannot be supplied directly from the mainland, due to the distance and costs it would generate in its logistics.


In the Galapagos Province, there is a special law, by which not all the inhabitants of Ecuador can live or work on the Islands. The reason why the labor force in any job is limited and exclusive for the “colonists” or permanent residents.

However, there are certain exceptions only and exclusively only when it is shown that there is no qualified labor for a certain job, companies can hire people from Continental Ecuador.

Likewise, due to this law, each year a study of the consumer price index is carried out, which allows setting the salaries of the province, which in consequence of what we have explained about supply and logistics, and due to other circumstances, they are higher than in mainland Ecuador.

Regarding the restrictions, it is important to mention that there is a list of products that, due to conservation issues, or for the protection of the island producer, are not allowed to be transported from the mainland. The list is long, however, we can mention some of them: coffee beans, fruits with seeds, dairy products, any type of meat for human consumption, among others. More details here.


The Paradise, like many travelers who have had the privilege of visiting the Galapagos call it, including some world celebrities such as American actor Leonardo DiCaprio and Microsoft CEO Bill Gates, have been amazed by the exemplary environmental care that exists. in the islands, all this with the support of the authorities and the community to preserve one of the most important Natural Heritage of Humanity in the world according to UNESCO.

Bill Gates visiting the Galapagos Tortoises Shelter.

“Bill Gates visiting the Galapagos Tortoises Shelter”.

Of course! “The famous Islands are not something for everyone”, that is, it is not a massive tourist destination, however, it is such a special place that all who dare to know it will surely remember it all their lives. Are you ready to meet Galapagos?


It is important that you know that the islands are not a purely “sun and beach” destination, since, if that is what you are looking for, you will be able to find much cheaper places in other destinations.

The fun part of a trip to Galapagos is educational tourism and everything it can offer you, such as never-before-seen animals, bird watching, hidden places, and various activities full of spectacular adventures.

Educational tourism is the main experience in the Galapagos Islands.

Educational tourism is the main experience in the Galapagos Islands.

Galapagos is not just sun and beach tourism! It is an adventure and expedition, since, if you take a Cruise through the Islands, you will be able to discover its most hidden secrets, flora and fauna unique in the world, and other wonders that are only shown to those who have decided to make the best trip of their life!


In conclusion, a trip to the Galapagos Islands is “expensive” due to all the investment that tourism operators, hotels, restaurants, and tourism service providers, must make, in order to offer you a quality service, an Once in a Lifetime Experience, and above all guarantee your safety and that of the endemic species that inhabit this wonderful place.

Remember that if you decide to take an island hopping tour or take a cruise on the islands, you contribute to the economy of hundreds of island families, since more than 80% of the economic activity of the islands is directly or indirectly linked to tourism.


📌 Discover our vessels in the Galapagos Islands! Click here.