PW Travels

Putney Westerfield's Trip Reports

Galapagos - January 2002

Why go? Probably because it is one exotic place in the world that one learns about in childhood: Charles Darwin’s trip and his origin of the species (“evolution” and “natural selection”. On a previous trip to Peru and Ecuador with son Brad (his first overseas trip at age 11, which included Manchu Picchu), there wasn’t time in the post-Christmas school break to include the Galapagos. I regret that I didn’t arrange a special trip for the entire family, as I have successfully encouraged various cousins to do with their families.
The Galapagos Islands are the only islands in the world with no indigenous population. Still, it has had an interesting history: (1) discovered in 1535 when it received its name, which means “Islands of the Tortoises” it be became a hideout for British pirates to raid Spanish galleons for gold and silver. Then Nantucket discovered the wealth of sperm whales – one ship captain returned with 2000 barrels of sperm oil. Now the islands are pure joy for the tourist.
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Galapagos 2002