Today is the last day of the year and we have saved the best for last. Today we are visiting Genovesa Island. This is one of the most pristine islands in the Galapagos, where no human has ever lived or introduced invasive species. In the morning, we visited Darwin Bay, a coralline beach with a healthy population of red-footed and Nazca boobies, frigatebirds and swallow-tailed gulls. As we walked along Darwin Bay, we encountered red-footed boobies nesting and juveniles learning how to fly right on our trails. The exciting morning continued with a breathtaking snorkel with hammerhead sharks!

In the afternoon, we visited Prince Phillip’s Steps to spot sea birds and the elusive short-eared owl, the top land predator on Genovesa. The island is home to a peculiar and nocturnal mammal, the Galapagos fur sea lion, the second species of pinniped found in the Galapagos Islands and very rare throughout the archipelago.

With New Year’s resolutions arising in the minds of our guests and crew, the sun set in paradise, and we all got ready to welcome a new year full of hope, health, and more expeditions in nature! Happy 2022 from the National Geographic Endeavour II family.