Tortoises arrived in the Galapagos on driftwood from mainland South America. 15 species evolved separately on different islands, each with a shell shaped to match the island’s volcanic structure.
On Santa Cruz you will encounter dozens of wild Santa Cruz tortoises grazing and resting. They’re much bigger and faster than you may expect. And the longer you watch the more unusual behaviour they display.
After encounters on the island’s highlands you will visit Fausto Llerena Tortoise Centre, where you can see different subspecies. They have been brought here as part of a breeding and conservation program, yet remain wild.