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Your Extra Layer of Security

Giant Tortoise Center on the Galapagos Islands

Agency | GoEco

Join the Giant Tortoise Center staff on the stunning Island of Isabela in the Galapagos and help care for these primeval and fascinating animals.

The project

The Galapagos Giant Tortoise is an iconic animal, native to the region. It often grows to over 6 feet long and can weigh up to 800 pounds, and therefore stands as one of the biggest tortoises and reptiles on the planet.

This project has been instrumental in the conservation of these ancient animals that were very close to extinction. At one time a quarter  million of these giants roamed the islands, but over time that number diminished to around 3000. Several factors were responsible for the decline, beginning with sailors and settlers hunting them for food.

The location

The Galápagos Islands is a volcanic archipelago in the Pacific Ocean and is considered one of the world's leading locations for  wildlife viewing. Its isolated landscape is home to a wide range of animal and plant species, many that cannot be found anywhere else in the world. Charles Darwin visited the islands in 1835, and his observation of Galápagos' species later inspired his theory of evolution.

Volunteer Work

During your time at the tortoise center you will be a full time member of the center’s staff aiding in the conservation and care of these fascinating ancient creatures.

  • Feeding and caring for the tortoises
  • Cleaning and maintaining enclosures
  • Explaining the rules and regulations of the center to tourists.
  • Additional zoo keeping assignments as needed

Suitable for


Typical day

Your schedule is based on 20 hrs/week and can be extended to a regular 40 hr work week.You will work from Monday - Friday, from 7.30AM - 11.30AM. This may change depending on the tasks at hand.

Program Requirements

In order to join the program you need to be at least 18 years old on the program start date. There might be exemptions if you can provide the permission of your legal guardian(s).
Language Skills
You need to speak Spanish (basic level)
Required Documents
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
Basic level of Spanish
A genuine passion for animal conservation
An ability to openly communicate rules and regulations to tourists and follow instructions
Ability to work independently as well as in a team
Flexibility in work schedules and tasks to accommodate day-to-day needs of a local institution
Physical ability to work outdoors with potentially high allergen, sun and temperature exposure
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 07:30 - 11:30

Any questions? Just ask. We at GoEco are happy to help you.

Contact Project Manager

Free-time activities

There are many thing to do around the Galapagos Islands. A highlight for many visitors, snorkeling is the chance to get up-close and personal with the wildlife of the seas. 

But of course you can also go swimming or surfing. Be prepared to share the beach with the local residents of the Galapagos, the beach-loving wildlife. From sea lions and sea turtles to eagle rays, the creatures on the islands are mostly happy to share their beautiful white sandy beaches with you, as long as you respect them. If you are a keen surfer then you can also surf on some of the beaches, such as Galapagos Beach, but make sure you check the beach's regulations before you hire or buy a board. Be aware the ground under the water can be a little rocky (so bring water shoes) and the water can be cold!

To really go deep into the hidden world of the Galapagos suit up and dive down on a scuba adventure. You can sign up for a scuba diving course (PADI) on the islands in advance, but without previous training you won't be able to make some of the advanced dives available. It is best to train as a scuba diver before you visit the islands to make the most of this unique location. Plenty of divers have seen white-tip sharks, marine iguanas, penguins, golden rays, hammerheads, Galapagos sharks and even whale sharks on their dives! Some of the best spots include Wolf Island and Darwin Island. Please note that you require to be a licensed diver.

Don't forget to explore the National Parks of the Galapagos Islands by hiking through them and follwing Charles Darwin's footsteps.

Water Sports
Contact & Reservation
4 - 12
4 - 12
Airport Pickup

Included Services

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High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Flex Option
Change your reservation at no extra costs
Refund Guarantee
We refund your fees if GoEco cancels your trip
Resolution Support
We cover your back no matter what happens
Services by GoEco
Accommodations: Private room in a volunteer house or with a host family
Food: Two or Three meals a day (depending on your accommodation)
Transfers: Round trip boat ticket to Isabela Island is included
Insurance: Comprehensive travel insurance is provided
Support: Local in-country team and 24hr emergency support

Important Note:  Most flights will require an overnight stay in Quito or Guayaquil before connecting flights to Baltra

You will stay in a private room, either in a shared volunteer house or nearby B&B. Both accommodations have western - style flush toilets and shared common areas, including a kitchen and dining room. For an additional $10 per day you can choose to stay with a host family. At your homestay you will also stay in a private room with western - style flush toilets.

Laundry: Laundry facilities are available.

Internet: WiFi is available.

Bedroom (Single)
Food & Beverages

At the volunteer house accommodations lunch and dinner is provided at your choice of various restaurants in town. Breakfast is not included, but you have the use of an equipped kitchen for cooking. At the homestay accommodations you will have breakfast and dinner with your host family. Lunch is provided at your choice of various restaurants in town.

Internet Access
Good access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees. An airport pickup isn't included within the program fees either.

No worries, Volunteer World supports you in raising funds, checking your visa regulations and travel insurance. We also assist you in finding the cheapest flights for your journey.
Costs (Prices in USD)
4 weeks (min. stay)
5 weeks
6 weeks
7 weeks
8 weeks
9 weeks
12 weeks (max. stay)
Average fees

You can volunteer at the project site in Galapagos/Ecuador between 4 weeks and 12 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. GoEco will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Deposit (15%)
The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by PayPal, our trusted global payment provider. If you don't have a PayPal account, you can also pay using a credit card.
Final Payment (85%)
Your final payment will be agreed with GoEco during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.

Get ready to volunteer in Ecuador

Check out first

Visa Regulations
Depending on your nationality, you have to arrange your visa for Ecuador. Please check the visa regulations for Ecuador.
Travel Seasons
Find out the best time to volunteer in Ecuador and receive information on weather and climatic conditions.
Living Costs
Living costs vary with each destination. We give an overview of what you should plan as an estimated budget to volunteer in Ecuador.
Generally, volunteering abroad involves certain costs. In case you need financial support, we will assist you to fundraise your volunteer program in Ecuador.

What's next?

The nearest airport is Baltra (GPS) in Galapagos Island. We assist you to find cheap flights to Ecuador.
Travel Insurance
Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Ecuador provides security and is a plus to have.
Vaccine Checker
If you are intending to volunteer in Ecuador you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Ecuador.
What can you do in leisure-time in Ecuador while you are not working at your volunteer opportunity?
Isla Isabela, Galapagos, Ecuador zoom="6"

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