Leading Ecuador Tour Operator Invests in Sustainability for Galapagos

Credit: Latin Trails

By The Maritime Executive 03-04-2020 03:33:42

Latin Trails, an Ecuador and Peru luxury tours specialist, has announced that a number of new investments have been put in place to make their small boat Galapagos cruises more sustainable than ever before. The organization, which offers Galapagos Islands tours aboard its two 16-person vessels, is committed to finding new ways to share the unique beauty and biodiversity of the islands while minimizing the potentially threatening impact of tourism.

One of the biggest investments to have been made by the tour operator is strategic upgrades to its vessels — Sea Star Journey and Seaman Journey — to boost onboard recycling, optimize use of fuel, and completely eradicate the use of plastic on all its Galapagos vacations. With new water processing and purification plants, more than 3,000 single use plastic bottles have been eliminated from the vessels and replaced with reusable aluminium bottles.

Sea Star Journey, which features a 100 percent recyclable iron keel, remains one of the only luxury boats operational with the Galapagos which has been completely made by hand, and which supports local artisans in Ecuador not only at the initial build, but also at every two-year maintenance. Onboard, guests will find a series of watercolor paintings and wood carvings by skilled Ecuadorian artists, each representing the local flora and fauna of the reserve.

Marcel Perkins, Managing Director of Latin Trails said, “The Galapagos is fragile, but sustainable boat operations can help to preserve the islands. For the continuation of the incredible biodiversity across the entire National Park, it is vital that we educate and share, but with the impact of traditional tourism becoming increasingly apparent, it’s time that more cruise providers and tour leaders were investing in a sustainable future for the islands, and this is something that will remain our top priority as we promote the Galapagos.”

In addition to vessel upgrades, Latin Trails has also presented a new ebook for potential travelers, highlighting the rules of the Galapagos National Park to ensure that all visitors take the appropriate measures to protect the unique environment. The Galapagos Conservancy sets out rules and regulations for all visitors, which include remaining on marked trails and respecting signage, maintaining a distance of six feet from wildlife, and refusing the offer of souvenirs or trinkets made from materials such as black coral, animal, native wood, lava rock, shells, and vegetation, the removal of which is illegal.

The Ecuador luxury tours operator is also proud to support a number of conservation projects in the National Park and Marine Reserve. As part of the International Galapagos Tour Operators Association, Latin Trails donates to the Galapagos Conservation Trust, and also supports the trust through the Tourism Partners scheme, creating sustainable, responsible partnerships. 

The products and services herein described in this press release are not endorsed by The Maritime Executive.