We spent the whole day at Santiago Island. An early walk was offered at Espumilla Beach. It was a delight to find the top predator of the archipelago, the Galapagos hawk, feeding on Pacific green sea turtle hatchlings. We enjoyed the water activities at Buccaneer’s Cove. We saw huge schools of sardines and salemas as well as many colorful fish. Whitetip reef sharks swam underneath us as blue-footed boobies dove next to us. Kayaking in this place was spectacular with smooth waters and a breathtaking landscape. In the afternoon, we visited Puerto Egas. We took a hike along the coastal area, the only place where we can see Galapagos fur seals on land. All the animals were so close, and the feeling was overwhelming. The “Enchanted Islands” are a dream come true!
National Geographic Endeavour II
North Seymour & Rabida Islands
We began our day with a landing on North Seymour, where we encountered hundreds of birds, mostly frigatebirds flying overhead. We followed a path that took us to a breeding site of blue-footed boobies and magnificent frigatebirds. We watched their mating displays in awe as nature showed us its wonderful ways. Male frigatebirds inflated their red gular sacs and stretched out their wings trying to attract a mate. Male blue-footed boobies slowing raising their cerulean feet to show a potential mate that they can fish well and support a nest. We also spotted land iguanas, marine iguanas, lava lizards, and a Galapagos racer snake along the path. We continued our navigation to Rabida Island, famous for its red sand beach, a coloration resulting from iron oxide in its volcanic soil. Those who chose to snorkel were delighted with sightings of sea turtles, sharks, Galapagos sea lions, and colorful fish. As the sun dipped into the horizon, we continued with a casual walk to a brackish pond that has a resurgent population of American flamingos, an excellent way to finish this day.