Galápagos Islands
Photo Courtesy of Joao Canziani
You may be shocked to discover that the Galápagos lacks for Michelin-starred restaurants and lament the absence of quality Top Chef pop-ups in Puerto Ayora, but the Galápagos may surprise you with the breadth and quality of the local cuisine. Just don’t come down here expecting sea lion steak or penguin foie gras. The star of the gastro scene is obviously the local seafood, with fresh lobster often earning rave reviews, ceviche in its various forms wholly ubiquitous and delicious, and Ecuadorian staples like potato soup rounding off nearly every meal. Dining options on the upmarket cruise ships range from good to excellent, as in the case of Metropolitan Touring’s La Pinta and National Geographic’s Endeavour and Islander ships, while some island lodgings like the Finch Bay Eco Hotel roll out inspired Ecuadorian menus that take advantage of the best the sea has to offer. Restaurants geared to tourists are plentiful in the main island towns, so you won’t lack for prawn pizza or Spaghetti alla Carbonara, with almuerzo set menus varying wildly in price and quality. Check your bags and your pockets before you set out on an excursion; under no circumstance should you carry food onto the islands, and never feed the animals.