Isla de La Plata Travel Guide
Isla de La Plata
Isla de La Plata, Ecuador
Frigatebirds flying above the cliffs
Frigatebirds flying above the cliffs
Humpback Whales and whale-watching
June – September is the whale-watching season on the Ecuadorian coast. Puerto Lopez is a good place to do it from and the chance to see many whales is largest in July – August. In Puerto Lopez there are many tour agencies where you can book a whale-watching tour or a tour to...
Visiting Isla de La Plata
From the boat we walked over the small beach up to the Park Office, where I think we registered. There you can also find the only bathrooms on the island. Then we started the hike and we all walked together with the guides uphill to a viewpoint and the starting point of...
The Blue-footed Boobies are funny looking birds, but also amazing with their bright blue feet and their special mating ritual. They are not shy and when walking the Machete trail on Isla de La Plata we saw several along the path.As the name indicate the Blue-footed Boobies...
The Nazca Booby (Sula granti) used to be seen as a subspecies of the Masked Booby, but it is now known that it is a species of its own. We saw several Nazca Boobies along the path, even on the path, when we walked the Machete trail on Isla de La Plata. Some of the boobies...
Almost all Waved Albatrosses (around 18 200 pairs) breed at Punta Suarez on Isla Espñola, Galapagos Islands, but a few can also be seen breeding on Isla de La Plata, just off the Ecuadorian coast. I had seen the albatrosses in Galapagos Islands the previous year and thought...
When we approached Isla de La Plata we could see the Frigatebirds flying above the cliffs. To have a closer look at the colony of Frigatbirds you shall choose to take the longer path, making a loop on the west side of the island. As I only a few days earlier had visited the...
In August and September the humpbacks breach of the coast of Ecuador. You can just go whale watching, but for about the same price you can go to the Isla de La Plata as well and see SO many whales on the way there! They'll also take you snorkeling off the island which is...
There are some nice hiking trails to the top of the Island. From there, the view is incredible and you can watch the frigate birds, boobies, albatross, etc...
Dolphins, whales, boobies and... goats?
The reason why this island is called "Galapagos of the poor" is because it is a cheaper way to see some of the animal species you can find in the more famous islands, like blue-footed boobies, black ones and there is even a notoriously lonely big sea lion resting in one of...
Tour to Isla de La Plata
I booked the tour to Isla de La Plata through the hotel where I stayed, Hotel Pacifico. The full day tour was $40 (July 2012). I was picked up by someone at the hotel just after nine in the morning and we walked on to a travel agency further down the Malecón. There we waited...
How to get there
The only way to get there is by joining a group in one of Puerto Lopez travel agencies (+/- $30 per person, no tax included). Prefer the ones with all required permissions and a boat in good condition since it's a quite long trip. Ask them if they have enough food and water...
A one-day trip
Favorite thing: To go to Isla de la Plata you have to join a group managed by one of local travel agencies in Puerto López, the only place so far where boats leave to go there (though I heard that authorities will allow soon boats leave from another closer beach, Puerto Cayo, making only a 30-minute boat travel).
There's no place to stay or to eat, so travel agency guides take supplies with them, but if it is a sunny day, take extra water with you, there is a very long walk waiting for you.
By the way, once there you should be given the chance to choose what hiking path you want, there is a short easy one (1 hour) and a longer one (3 hours) which goes through a very irregular terrain (though with the best views also). Be wise because sun rays after 11 am are not a joke in Ecuador, specially if you will be exposed for 3 hours.
After returning to the boat you will be able to rest and then have a very well-deserved dip in the ocean with lots of colorful fishes swimming around, particularly when feeded, they love bread.
Updated Oct 4, 2004
- Related to:
- Hiking and Walking
- Diving and Snorkeling
- National/State Park