We began our day with an optional early wake-up call to explore Espumilla and practice photography in this calm setting. We saw blue-footed boobies, brown pelicans, and a Pacific green turtle on land. We had opportunities to use our cameras with different settings, and even our iPhones were very useful. We continued our walk over a mile-long sandy beach. We spotted many crabs and also the archipelago’s top predator, the Galapagos hawk.
Once we were back onboard for breakfast, our captain repositioned the ship to the next visitor site, Buccaneer Cove. The morning was very active with snorkeling. Snorkelers spotted many, and I mean many, whitetip reef sharks, probably more than 60. We observed a few sea lions and fish of all kinds. We also kayaked and went paddleboarding.
On Santiago Island, the geological formations are impressive. The world-famous Praying Monk rock formation captured our attention. If that was not enough, we enjoyed a few trips in our glass-bottom boat. This fabulous mode of travel gave us clear views of a multitude of fish, especially those sharks.
We took a break for a well-deserved lunch and a talk on Charles Darwin given by naturalist Anahi Concari.
Soon after, we made an adventurous wet landing on Puerto Egas’ black sandy beach. We walked along the shore and intertidal pools of Santiago. We enjoyed sightings of marine iguanas, sea lions, shorebirds, and Galapagos fur seals. During high tide and under a new moon, this site was impressive with its combination of landscape, waves, breezes, and unique wildlife.
After cocktail hour and a fun recap, we had a barbeque dinner. Our expedition has reached its peak. A wonderful feeling of coexistence and respect for one another influences us now and will continue to do so.