Puerto Villamil is a town on Isabela, one of the Galapagos Islands. Most of the inhabitants live in agriculture and fishing, but also tourism is growing. It's a nice place to hang out on the beach for a few days or do some snorkeling.
There is a daily boat leaving to Puerto Ayora at 6:00am and leaving from Puerto Ayora back to Puerto Villamil at 2:00pm. It's a rough and noisy two hour boatride and cost $30 one-way.
Emetebe and AIR ZAB have daily flights to Baltra airport and San Cristobal.
Most streets lack adequate street signs, but a civic improvement project is changing this, at least in the center of town. New sidewalks with lava pavers are also being added. The town is small enough to explore in an hour. Local children are glad to help you find your destination.
For things to see around Puerto Villamil see Isabela.
- Surfing (at Carapachudo Bike & Surf). Isabela is the best island to learn how to surf or improve your stills. As of July 2016, the only place that rents surfboards and does classes in Carapachudo Bike & Surf. Classes are $45 per person (for 2hrs) and rentings are $15 for 4 hours. edit
- Biking (with Carapachudo Bike & Surf), Escalecias y Tero Real, ☎ 0994885473, . This tour operator has been the first on the Islands to rent bike and do bike tours. They have bike and excellent conditions, for adults and also for children and parents with babies. They also rent Surfboards and snorkeling gear and wetsuits, although their gear tend to be premium and they usually charge more for it ($10 for snorkel mask per day, as opposed to $5 at most other places). edit
- Snorkeling - snorkeling around Las Tintoreras or Concha de Perla is excellent. You might also take a tour to "Los Tuneles", or "The Tunnels", a wonderful area of eroded lava islets filled with sea life, where turtles and sharks can be seen.
- Hiking - there's a nice 2,5-3 hours (return trip) hike to the wall of tears. On the way there are lots of things to see; lakes with flamingos and other wildlife, beaches with hundreds of (really big) iguanas, beaches with sea lions, giant turtoises and there are some view points. Take plenty of water, sunscreen and a hat.
- Visit the tortoise breeding center - A nice half hour walk from town through mangroves to the breeding center. Some information and lots of giant tortoises, including baby ones (free)
- Diving - there appears to be only one diving center on the island (Isabela Diving Center) which offer dives for 120-140$. The other shops just resell the same tour. It should be noted that this diving center is not padi certified.
- Iguana Crossing. On the West side of town between the beach and the lagoons is the Iguana's crossing. Even the police stop to let them go. This is the only controlled intersection in Puerto Villamil.
There are no ATMs in Puerto Villamil or banks. Very few locations accept credit cards, make sure to bring plenty of cash.
Shops in Puerto Villamil sell food, supplies, and souvenirs.
There are several restaurants and bakeries in Puerto Villamil. Most restaurants serve rice, beans and a piece of meat for around 2 dollars.
- Encantado de Pepa is a wonderful little cafe serving good food on a clean and charming patio adjacent to the town's main square. La Pepa is one of the most entertaining characters in the Galapagos.
The nightlive is pretty sedate in Puerto Villamil.
- BAR CASA ROSADA (Bar The Pink House next to the Hotel Caleta Iguana also called The Pink House), Antonio GIl y Flamencos, ☎ 5 25 29 405. Definitely the place to hang-out at night! Happy hour from 5pm to 7pm, live music, hammocks,volleyball games, slack line... Full of locals and tourists from Monday to Saturday. A no-miss if you go to Isabela! edit
- Bar de Beto is a beachfront bar popular with locals and travelers, good to grab a beer and chill out.
Places are available for $15 a night (maybe less).
- 4 Hermanos in front of the large indoor football court, a few blocks back from the main square and beach. Wifi, free water, can use the family kitchen downstairs. $15pp/night for a fan room.
- Hostal Flamencos is probably the best deal in town. The clean spacious rooms have aircon, television, fridge, private bathroom with hot shower and a view on poza salinas, where sometimes flamingos can be seen. It's run by a friendly family who also serve meals. The price is only $20 per person per night. Walk towards the Flamingo Sanctuary and it is the first building on the right before the turn.
- Hostal Neptuno is to the right of the second fork when leaving the port (incorrectly placed on maps to the left). Has a small number of rooms, allows use of the kitchen, staff not always on hand but friendly, wifi functional but slow as to be expected, comfortable beds. Quoted rate $15 per person off season. Negotiable, especially with multiple nights.
- Caleta Iguana, Hotel & Surf Camp (Known as Casa Rosada (The Pink house)), Antonio Gil y Flamencos, ☎ "593, . It is the last house on the western part of the beach, where you will enjoy the most amazing views and sunsets, just inches from the ocean and 3 minutes away from the town shops and restaurants. Rooms are metres away from a neighboring club that hosts tour boats. Often the boats arrive late in the night, meaning guests are awoken by loud music, which continues until the officially permitted time of 2am. Bring earplugs. It has a long history and interesting facts. It was in this house where the famous music group 'Iguanamen of Galapagos' used to write and practice their songs. This was their place for inspiration. Iguanamen was lead by Gringo Juan (John Vokes), who died in 2007. 7 nice rooms, 3 with ocean view. Nice volley ball court, amazing drinks, prices include nice continental breakfast with fresh Galapagos Coffee. They also organize surf classes, rent surf boards, wetsuits, snorkeling gear and bikes. (price?) edit
- Hotel San Vincente Galapagos, . is popular by travelers. It has a restaurant they also organize tours. There's room for 48 guests distributed in singles, doubles, and triples rooms. All rooms have air conditioners, hot water, private bathroom, and TV. The price is around $30 per person per night plus taxes and include the breakfast. edit
- Hotel La Laguna Galapagos, . This hotel is located in front of the Flamingos Lagoon in Isabela Island offers double rooms with private bathroom, hot water, air conditioner, comfortable social areas, wireless internet services and Jacuzzi. USD 56,00. edit
- Casa Isabela (formerly La Casita de la Playa), ☎ 097 198 142 ([email protected], fax: (05-2) 529103). On the beach, near town center, air conditioning, picture windows, quiet, family owned, top notch service. edit
- La Casa de Marita is the first upmarket place in town.
- Red Mangrove. upscale edit
- Iguana Crossing. upscale edit
- Hotel Albermarle the newest and most upscale hotel in town.
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