Galapagos Islands, officially the Galápagos archipelago is the name of the Ecuadorian archipelago of 19 volcanic islands in the eastern Pacific Ocean about 1000 km west of the coast of Ecuador. They are famous only living on these islands, strange species, such as prehistoric-looking lizards and giant terrestrial turtles.
Galapagos are located on both sides of the equator. He crosses the northern part of the largest island of Isabela. The archipelago has an area of 7,844 km ², with a population of about 31,000 inhabitants. Ecuador, the Galapagos are provinces. The capital is Puerto Baquerizo Moreno on San Cristobal Island. The most famous are the islands of Isabela, San Cristóbal, Santiago, Santa María and Santa Cruz.
Galápago means turtle - the name means something like "Turtle Island" on some Ecuadorian maps can be found naming Arcipiélago de Colón.
The archipelago is made up of young volcanic cones. Some are still active. The largest island of Isabela stands the highest mountain, volcano Wolf to 1646 m asl The crater through the equator. The islands are mostly dry climate. They have a black surface of the lava rocks. Are only partially wooded peaks of volcanoes. First Galapagos Islands were formed from basaltic lava during submarine eruptions, approximately 5.5 million years ago. According to the latest findings by the islands every year, moving away from mainland Ecuador 7 cm.