Who We Are
We are a small but mighty team of experienced naturalist guides, tour operators, accountants, event planners, and world travelers. We are based in Guayaquil, the gateway to Ecuador and the Galapagos. We love our country and can't wait to show you why. Meet our team!
NATURALIST, FOUNDER AND CEO
Fausto Rodriguez founded Galapagos Best eleven years ago in order to share his love and knowledge of Ecuador's famous archipelago with others. Originally from Riobamba, in the countryside of the Ecuadorian Andes, he first visited the Galapagos in 1990 and has since become one of their most experienced and biologically knowledgeable guides. In 1966, after working as a mate aboard various Galapagos ships, he completed the rigorous training to become a licensed Galapagos National Park Naturalist, and shortly thereafter he spent several years in London where he earned a degree in Languages and Tourism from South Bank College. He has also been trained by National Geographic to lead photography expeditions.
He has guided thousands of visitors on personalized cruises, birding expeditions, and photography tours throughout the islands. He has particular interests in geology, plants, birds, marine life, and mammals, and is equally passionate about guiding and teaching.
When he is not in the Galapagos, Fausto lives in Guayaquil with his family.
VP OF OPERATIONS
Fernando Icaza has led tours throughout Ecuador for twenty years. He grew up in Guayaquil and graduated from Guayaquil State University with a degree in tourism and hospitality. He continued his studies in Costa Rica and Ecuador in order to learn more about the history of the region and master English. Fernando is a certified naturalist guide for the Churute Mangrove Ecological Reserve.
When he is not guiding tourists through his beautiful city, he enjoys relaxing at the beach with his family and practicing yoga.
CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER
Silvia Zorrilla has over sixteen years experience in administration and finance. She grew up in the Manabí Province of Ecuador and came to Guayaquil to study administration and accounting at the Instituto Superior Tecnológico. She has worked as the Chief Financial Officer at Galapagos Best for the past three years.
When not in the office, she enjoys spending time with her nine-year-old daughter, Susan. She is excited about their upcoming trip to Disney World.
Kim Christie was born in London and has always had a passion for travel. Shortly after finishing her studies in travel and tourism she moved to Dubai to sell property on the famous Palm Jumeirah Island. Looking for a new adventure she relocated back to Europe to teach English to children in Madrid. Unable to settle and shake off the travel bug, she then found herself backpacking her way around India and South East Asia.
Kim spent the last seven years of her career in England specializing in expeditions to the Polar Regions. She managed operations and split her time between the London based office and aboard ships heading to the Arctic and Antarctica.
Her love for boats and wildlife soon introduced her to the Galapagos Islands which is where she now resides.
Ana is a Wildlife Biologist born in Guayaquil with 20 years experience in ornithology and bird watching. She did her undergraduate thesis in the Galapagos Islands to obtain her degree at the Pontifical Catholic University of Ecuador. Later, she obtained her master’s degree in biology at the University of Missouri, Saint Louis in 2003. She works in conservation biology and has led explorations to the coastal cordillera Chongón-Colonche, the sandstone mountain range of Cordillera del Condor, Napo and Pastaza River basins in the Amazon region, as well as various sites along the coast. Since 2007 she worked on shorebird conservation for the NGO Aves y Conservación – partner of Birdlife in Ecuador. Ana is knowledgeable in the diversity of bird forms and their life histories.