Andres Vergara was born and raised in Ecuador's capital of Quito. His grandparents, however, lived off the coast of Ecuador where Andres' love of nature and wildlife was nurtured. Andres observed various interesting species near his grandparents' home, including the neotropical cormorant, a flightless cormorant similar to those that are endemic to the Galapagos Islands. Infused with a passion for the sea, when Andres came of age he moved to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, where he studied to become a ship captain, ultimately spending a few years sailing the world as deck officer on board merchant ships. Later, he landed in the Galapagos where he became one of the youngest captains in the islands, piloting a variety of large yachts for many years. His favorite part of his job, however, was sharing the amazing wildlife and natural history of the Galapagos with his guests. In 2005, he says he discovered his "true vocation" when he became a naturalist guide for Galapagos National Park, a profession he has been avidly practicing since.
Andres describes himself as a "family man," and says his whole family is involved with conservation and defense of the Galapagos lifestyle, devoted to protecting nature and supporting a healthy environment for the local community and its wild residents. His wife is
a marine biologist involved in full-time Galapagos conservation work with Galapagos National Park and WWF. The new and exciting discoveries that each and every adventure in the islands holds is what Andres loves most about his job. "Being able to show the wonders of the Galapagos is a privilege and a duty for us as naturalist guides who love this place," says Andres, "and the best way to do this is to share the islands with our select groups of Natural Habitat travelers."
Upcoming Adventures with Andres:
Classic Galapagos: The Natural Habitat Experience
Galapagos Hiking & Kayaking Adventure
Praise from Natural Habitat travelers:
"Just a wonderful guide. So passionate about the Galapagos. We ran into other groups and saw how their guides worked with their people. They don't come close to comparing to Andres. He was just top notch. Never got excited or angry. Always calm and happy. Just great!"
"Andres, is for sure the best guide I have ever experienced. On a scale from 1-10, his knowledge of the Galapagos was a 15."
"Andres was enthusiastic, knowledgeable and organized. He made this a trip I will always remember as one of the best experiences I have had while traveling. I would take another tour with Andres at any time."
"Andres is always optimistic, always energetic, always voluble and personable; excellent English; never a question whose answer he didn't know."
"I can't say enough about the quality service and care Andres brought to our Galapagos experience. He was highly knowledgeable about the wildlife, the environment and the history, along with showing every day how much he cared to show us a great time."