Hello all. Steve here.
I have taken some pictures of the town.
This is perhaps the most surprising thing of the Galapagos for me. I had not stopped to wonder where the locals lived, or where tourists were accommodated.
The three towns we have visited, Puerto Morena on San Cristobel, Puerto Villamil on Isabela and Puerta Aroya on Santa Cruz were increasingly large and correspondingly touristy.
This last was getting on for being too noisy and full of tourists for us hardened travellers (!). Especially at festival time.
Also, nearly everything involving the sights, dives, visits and so on requires that you are guided by an qualified and approved naturalist. And these don't come cheap.
The authorities have obviously decided that tourism is inevitable, so they must control it and generate enough money to fund the environmental work.
So the tourist access is kept to what is apparently 0.1% of land area and specified dive areas. Quite a few of the islands hav ed no tourist access at all and others are very limited.
Pictures attached are of the town and harbour of Puerto Ayora.