- The Galápagos Islands are a group of islands, or archipelago, in the eastern Pacific Ocean.
- There are thirteen major islands and a handful of smaller islands that make up the Galápagos archipelago.
- They are part of the country of Ecuador, in South America. They lie about 966 kilometres (600 miles) off of the Ecuadorian coast.
- The archipelago is distributed on either side of the Equator with an underwater wildlife spectacle with abundant life.
- It is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1978.
- Mount Azul at 5,541 feet is the highest point of the Galapagos Islands.
- The principal language on the islands is Spanish.
- The islands have a population of slightly over 25,000.
Geology of the Galápagos Islands
- It begins at the sea floor and emerges above sea level where biological processes continue.
- Three major tectonic plates Nazca, Cocos and Pacific meet at the basis of the ocean, which is of significant geological interest.
- In comparison with most oceanic archipelagos, the Galapagos are very young.
- The largest and youngest islands, Isabela and Fernandina, with less than one million years of existence, and
- The oldest islands, Española and San Cristóbal are somewhere between three to five million years.
- They are a volcanic archipelago located at the confluence of three ocean currents.
- These currents are – Humboldt Current, Panama Flow and Cromwell Current.
- 20 April 2023:
- Recently, a scientific expedition has discovered a previously unknown coral reef with abundant marine life off Ecuador’s Galapagos Islands.