The Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel is excited to announce that we have something new and incredibly sustainable on the horizon! In addition to our highly sustainable practices here at the World’s Leading Green Hotel, we are proud to announce the upcoming introduction of our brand-new, shiny and completely solar-powered Solar Ray (transfer boat)!
First things first: Why does the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel even have a transfer boat?
Our transfer boat is the second to last step in getting our guests from Baltra Airport to the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel. You’ll find the transfer boat waiting for you at the docks of Puerto Ayora, not far from where your airport transfer vehicle drops you off. The distance from the Puerto Ayora docks to Muelle de los Alemanes (German Dock) is around 400 meters (1,300 feet), a crossing which is done in under 5 minutes.
What’s up with this new transfer boat? What makes the Solar Ray so sustainable?
This sustainable project in Galapagos was carried out in tandem with Kara Solar – a highly reputable group known for bringing solar-powered transport to the Achuar communities in the Ecuadorian Amazon! Up until now, Kara Solar has helped over 1,000 people that form a part of these Amazonian communities, which themselves are spread out along 67 km (42 mi) of river. The solar-powered boats are managed and operated by an Achuar team.
It’s thanks to Kara Solar’s help that our Finch Bay Solar Panga (formerly known as the Finch Bay I) has now been retrofitted to work with a fully electric motor.
Not one but four solar panels are now situated on the boat’s rooftop, which provide provisional power to the boat’s electric engine. The boat itself will receive the rest, if not most of its charge, directly from the grid over at Metropolitan Touring’s offices in Puerto Ayora. Nevertheless, these lightweight solar panels that are firmly attached to the stainless steel rooftop will be responsible for transforming sunlight into electricity, which will then be stored in the boat’s batteries. Have a look at this prototype below:
In summary, the Solar Ray has now been installed with:
Four 370 W solar panels (1,480 W or 1.48 kWh, in total)
Four 2.7 kWh batteries (10.8 kWh, in total)
Four 1.7 kWh chargers (6.8 kWh, in total) to allow the boat to charge with a 220V plug.
A charge controller
A console with a steering wheel and speed throttle
What benefits do solar-powered services in Galapagos have, exactly?
Virtually silent and with zero-emissions, the Solar Ray diminishes noise pollution throughout the fragile Galapagos environment while also cutting down tremendously on our dependence on gasoline. Both of these factors help us take better care of the surrounding wildlife that often peacefully glides around and under our transfer boat.
With this new project, the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel and Metropolitan Touring hope to demonstrate just how viable ecological and “green” transportation can actually be in Galapagos, rather than just see it as just a gimmick or a concept that sounds nice but never really works that great in practice. We’re here to tell all those naysayers otherwise: solar-powered services, such as our Solar Ray transfer boat, are absolutely feasible in Galapagos. And, in the case of our new Solar Ray,they’re here to stay.
Every day is an opportunity for change, and little by little, we’re hoping to let go of our dependency on fossil fuels here in the Galapagos Islands – a UNESCO World Heritage Site!
So which hotel in Galapagos offers solar-powered services?
Now you know! The Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel does!
Once we have her in service, we can’t wait to have you take a ride with her when you come stay with us at the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel!
How to experience the Galapagos islands: land or sea?
In isles as enchanted as these, there’s always so much to see, so much to do… but what exactly are the ways to experience Galapagos? This blog explains exactly that: how to experience the Galapagos Islands. Basically, experiencing the islands can be narrowed down into two categories, the latter of which branches out into a handful of sub-categories. There’s a sea-based option and land-based option. Follow along in this blog to find out how to experience the Galapagos Islands.
How to Experience the Galapagos Option #1: On Land
Look no further than the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel if you’re looking for a.) the only beach front hotel on Santa Cruz Island and b.) an enriching, relaxing, and rejuvenating land (and sea! We’ll get to that below) experience. Staying on land is an option that caters to those more interested in experiencing the archipelago one step at a time, gradually taking it all in as it comes at your own pace and of course: lounging by the shore side with a nice drink in hand before heading into town to soak in the local island life.
Not to mention: it’s probably the best choice for those that are slightly more prone to seasickness (please note: there are “sea-sickness proof” cruises in the archipelago that help abate this symptom). However, those with sea legs that looking to head out and experience a little more of the archipelago while enjoying the comfort of their land-based option are privy to…
The Land & Sea Option
With its own Sea Lion Yacht, the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotels offers its guests the opportunity to check out a number of the surrounding, beautiful islands from the comfort of a fully-equipped, luxurious and modestly-sized vessel. Guests are treated to a buffet lunch throughout their travels to the islands, and multiple activities are offered as well. And if you’re looking for an even more expansive way of experiencing the islands, there’s always…
Expand your horizons even further with this incredible option that grants guests the ability to fly from Santa Cruz Island all the way to the largest island of the archipelago that is Isabela. Add to the number of check marks that you’ve built up on your Galapagos BIG15 list of iconic species and revel in an even greater amount of majestic views by standing at the rim of one of the world’s largest craters.
How to Experience the Galapagos Option #2: At Sea (with Island Stops)
Another great option for experiencing the islands is hopping on a cruise, which instantly grants you access to more visitor sites in the Galapagos National Park, species, islands and the company of an expert guide that will follow you along the whole way. It’s worth noting that a sea-based option grants guests the opportunity to visit places that simply can’t be accessed by staying on land (due to how faraway certain visitor sites are). All-in-all, the best part about having these two options is the fact that guests can link them together, if they wish. When it comes to looking for how to experience the Galapagos Islands, is it too much to ask for both options? With Metropolitan Touring, it never is.