The Galapagos Islands are part of Ecuador and lie approximately 400 km west of of the the Ecuadoran coast. A smaller island called Isla De La Plata (Island of Silver, or Silver Island) is about an hour off the coast by small boat, and is also called "The Poor Man's Galapagos". It is smaller, and has a lot of the same flora and fauna (blue footed booby [to see the Blue Footed Booby mating ritual, click here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oYmzdvMoUUA] , frigate birds, iguanas, etc.).
Ecuador is divided into four basic regions:
- La Costa, or "the coast", comprises the low-lying land in the western part of the country, including the Pacific coastline.
- La Sierra, or "the highlands", is the high-altitude belt running north–south along the centre of the country, its mountainous terrain dominated by the Andes mountain range.
- La Amazonía, also known as El Oriente, or "the east", comprises the Amazon rainforest areas in the eastern part of the country, accounting for just under half of the country's total surface area, though populated by less than 5% of the population.
- La Región Insular is the region comprising the Galápagos Islands, some 1,000 kilometres (620 mi) west of the mainland in the Pacific Ocean.
Copyright ©2014, Scott E. Kasden, M.D., all rights reserved.