We are pleased to present a new Solo Travel Destination Post from Wen-Ting, a member of the Solo Travel Society on Facebook. Wen-Ting is from the United States, and submitted the following report about the Galapagos Islands and Quito, Ecuador. Do you have a solo travel destination that you would like to recommend? Submit your description here, along with a few photos, and share it with fellow travelers!
Solo travel rating: 2 (1 is easiest, 3 is most difficult. Please see chart below)
Languages spoken: Spanish
Costs at Destination: Expensive (local transportation, dining, tours, events and attractions)
Reasons to Visit Galapagos Islands and Quito, Ecuador
Quito is the capital of Ecuador, sitting at 2850 meters high and surrounded by beautiful mountains. The city itself has been named a UNESCO World Heritage site, and the Old Town is particularly interesting because of the historical buildings.
Safety was a concern for me as some local people warned me that it was not safe to walk around by yourself at night, and that pickpocketing was a major problem. It is a big city with the typical big city problems, however, exploring during the day was fine. I joined a free walking tour and a day trip to Quilotoa. Both were highly recommended.
The Galapagos Islands are a different story than mainland Ecuador. It is a wildlife and nature heaven if you enjoy being outdoors and observing unique animals. It is a highly regulated region with everything inspected to protect the species of the islands. There are options for land tours as well as multi-day cruises. A lot of people chose the multi-day cruise, during which you get to see almost every island, however, it is relatively expensive. I chose the land tours and stayed in Santa Cruz and Isabela for a few days each. I then took day trips from the islands and simply just explored locally. It saved me money and also allowed me to experience local life.
Solo Travel Destination Rating System
Safety – 2 (1 very safe, 2 safe in most areas, 3 be cautious at all times.)
Language – 3 (1 English is first language, 2 English speakers easy to find, 3 English speakers rare)
Navigation – 1 (1 easy to navigate by transit or car, 2 poor transit, car necessary, 3 not easy to get around)
Culture – 2 (1 Similar to North America or Western Europe, 2 Different from above but relaxed and easy, 3 Challenging)
Average Rating – 2 (1 is easiest, 3 is most difficult)