It’s our first full day in the Galapagos Islands, and we visited Plazas Islet first thing after breakfast. In this place, we encountered countless sea lions sleeping under the equatorial sun, and swallow-tailed gulls resting during the day. The highlight of this island is its population of land iguanas.

As we walked farther along the trail, we spotted a land iguana feeding on prickly pear cactus. This is the main source of food during the dry season, and the island is really dry right now. What a great sighting, as this is something we do not get to see every day.

We kept walking and arrived at the bachelors’ sea lion colony, where single males were resting. Blue-footed boobies and other seabirds flew above our heads.

In the afternoon, we moved the ship to Santa Fe Island, where plenty of playful sea lions were waiting for us to get in the water. Kayaking was offered today, and guests enjoyed paddling alongside sea turtles, rays, and sea lions, of course!

Our late afternoon walk took us into the island’s dry forest. The largest prickly pear cactus in the Galapagos can be observed here, along with the island’s unique species of land iguana, the pale iguana. Iguanas and sea lions are plentiful on this unique island, in addition to curious Galapagos doves and an endemic rat.

At the end of the walk, the sea lions were there to wave goodbye as we boarded our Zodiacs to go back to National Geographic Islander II.