These are unprecedented times and we hope this finds you well. Until the time when we can all travel again safely, we will be sharing a series of stories about cultural visionaries, protectors of habitat, and colorful locals who have something to teach us. Enjoy!
Step Into Reyna Oleas’ World, Where Giant Tortoises Roam
Welcome to the Galapagos Islands! In 1835, Charles Darwin arrived in the Galapagos Islands aboard the H.M.S. Beagle. A trained naturalist, Darwin was blown away by the array of species on the archipelago’s 20+ islands. His observations lead him to his Theory of Evolution.
Now, nearly 200 years later, travelers from around the world are visiting these unique islands.
We caught up with eco-entrepreneur Reyna Oleas, who owns and operates a collection of villas Villa Galapagos 3 on land that is both a bio-dynamic farm and protected tortoise habitat. In the video below, Reyna reminds us that a connection with nature can be a life-changing experience – one that can open the door to a mindful life.
Sustainable Travel in Galapagos
Reyna’s initiatives are living proof that ecological farm practices and habitat protection can form an enlightened whole. They leverage profits from the cultivation of coffee, bananas, and guava (plus tourism) to finance the recovery and rehabilitation of giant tortoises.
Giant tortoises are the longest-lived of all vertebrates, the oldest on record having lived to 152. Once numbering a 1/4 million across the Galapagos, the giant tortoise was pushed close to extinction by overexploitation of the species, as well as habitat conversion to agriculture.
Today there are about 3,000 giant tortoises that visit Reyna’s farm on Santa Cruz Island alone.