Day 1 – April, 12th – After a 3 hour-flight we arrived in Baltra Island. Transfer to Itabaca Canal in Public bus and ferry (5 minutes to Santa Cruz). Once in Santa Cruz we started our first excursion getting in the highland’s forest. We visited El Chato reserve where Giant Tortoises live in the wild. A couple of huge Tortoises appeared while we were walking through a tropical cloud forest with lots of lichens and endemic plants. Overnight on board of the M/C Archipell II, at night sail to Isabela – Puerto Villamil (4 hours)
Day 2 – April,13th – In the morning we visited one of the most important marine iguana nesting areas, Las Tintoreras where lots of males and females were mating and juveniles basking on the sun. A panga ride around the islet made us discover some blue footed boobies, pelicans and Galapagos penguins.
In the afternoon a bus ride brought us to the local giant tortoise breeding centre a place where to know about Galapagos giant tortoises in a controlled area for research purposes. At night we sailed for 5 hours to our next stop Moreno Point.
Day 3 – April,14th –
As a next discovery, we started early in the morning to explore the west coast of Isabela Island – Moreno Point. A lava flow that was originated from Sierra Negra Volcano is an amazing stop for exploring the lava structures and the origin of the Galapagos pioneer plants. A couple of ponds with some grass and cactus is a landscape unique in this very active place.
In the afternoon we sail to Elizabeth Bay. A Panga Ride let us to discover some of the most interesting ecosystems in the Galapagos – Mangroves ! Some rays, sharks, penguins, cormorants approached curiously to what we had new for them in this unique flooded region. A 4-hour sail stopped in front of Tagus Cove for next morning adventure.
Day 4 – April,15th –
After breakfast, an early dry landing brought us to an uphill hike to the rim of Darwin’s lake and its dry and rocky surroundings. Incredible ocean view from the top and further an amazing volcanic landscape with sharp lava and dry tropical forest. As a second visit in the afternoon we stopped at Espinosa Point, a unique lava area with the biggest Galapagos marine iguanas colony.
Day 5 – April,16th –
After 14 hour sail finally we arrived to Bachas beach our last Galapagos visit. A white sand beach in the north of Santa Cruz where flamingos and migratory birds look around for crustaceans and small fish.
Time to come back to Quito !