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Daily Expedition Reports

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Lastest Expedition Reports

Manuel Antonio National Park

Welcome back, National Geographic Sea Lion, to southern Central America! This week is the beginning of our 2015-2016 season and last night, we sailed around 55 nautical miles from Herradura Bay in order to reach the Central Pacific region of Costa Rica. Our day started in one of our most beautiful protected areas of Costa Rica: Manuel Antonio National Park. Read More>

Nov 29, 2015 National Geographic Sea Lion in Costa Rica & Panama

Beagle Channel, Patagonia, Argentina

The expedition we have enjoyed for the past three weeks is closing a rather large loop around the Scotia Sea.  When we left Ushuaia, Argentina the path our ship National Geographic Explorer would take was fairly well known, but what wonders we would see along that path were not. First the Falklands with magnificent black-browed albatross colonies mixed with pugnacious rockhopper penguins. Read More>

Nov 28, 2015 National Geographic Explorer in Antarctica

At Sea, Bound for Ushuaia, Argentina

We awoke this morning well into our sail across the Drake Passage and on to Ushuaia. Marking the end of our voyage to the Antarctic peninsula yesterday was a day chock-full of exploration and celebration. Neko Harbour provided us with breath-taking views, a pristine ending to a seemingly perfect voyage. As many of us began to wind down the exciting chapter in our lives others embarked on a new adventure entirely. In announcement to the entire harbour, blasts from the ships horn signified a very special celebration apart from the Thanksgiving holiday: the symbolic marriage of one of the most friendly and delightful couples on board. Presided over by the Captain and accompanied by a handful of penguins as witnesses, Sandra and Tegwen reminded us of the many thanks we have to give in our lives. For those of us not travelling with family it was an opportunity to give thanks for the memories and friends we have made over the last three weeks, an especially moving “Friendsgiving”. With relatively calm seas many of us took time today to organize photos and catch up on much deserved rest. Read More>

Nov 27, 2015 National Geographic Explorer in Antarctica

At Sea, Eastbound for Easter Island

We are lost in the vastness of the Pacific Ocean, having left Ducie Island two days ago. Ducie was itself the last scrap of land at the eastern rim of the Pitcairn group, already 500 miles behind us.  Polynesians once occupied this group of islands, themselves depending on a tenuous link with Mangareva, far, far back in our wake. The Mangarevans came to Pitcairn for the volcanic rock which made the finest stone axes, essential for woodland clearance at home and weapons at war. The Pitcairn natives came east to Henderson for the tough Miro trees, whose dense bark was perfect for carving, and to load up with seabird eggs and fish as a welcome change from taro and sweet potato. But life was never easy in these outposts, and both Pitcairn and Henderson were long abandoned when Europeans arrived in recent times.  And yet, at some time over one thousand years ago, their own ancestors had launched one of their mighty double-hulled canoes and set off across 900 miles of ocean to reach our next destination, Easter Island, far away under the eastern horizon.  Theirs was the Starship Enterprise of its day, a valiant band of determined adventurers who found, settled and created an extraordinary society whose demise has intrigued the outside world for generations. We are following in their wake now, to reach the same infinitesimal islet somewhere in the wide watery world of the Pacific, the greatest ocean on Earth.  How they got there is a miracle, how they survived is a marvel, how their society disintegrated is a mystery. It is the stuff of Lindblad adventures….. Read More>

Nov 27, 2015 National Geographic Orion in Pacific Islands & Australia

Bartolome Island and Chinese hat

The week is ending. Every day has been an adventure for our intrepid guests, with each island a new experience. Today we woke up early to walk to the top of Bartolome, an iconic place in Galapagos. Once we got to the summit the view is astonishing—many geological formations are visible, from a big “father volcano” to several parasitic cones, cinder cones, or just petrified lava flows. Everything smells of geology here. It is what we call a “moonscape.” So, our early adventure brought happy guests back on board. Read More>

Nov 26, 2015 National Geographic Endeavour in Galápagos

Neko Harbor

Happy Thanksgiving! It doesn’t really feel like it Thanksgiving much here, more like an early winter wonderland with the stunning scenery that surrounds us in Neko Harbor. This is our last chance to go ashore and we made the most of it with the official continental landing. Read More>

Nov 26, 2015 National Geographic Explorer in Antarctica

South Plazas and Santa Fé Island

This morning we arrived at a small island on the eastern realm of Santa Cruz Island called South Plazas Island. Our walk took us along a rocky trail where Galapagos land iguanas were found in large numbers and most were displaying territorial and mating behavior. There were also females Galapagos sea lions with their newborn pups and the large territorial males barking along the coast. As we reached the cliffs we observed several swallow-tailed gulls and magnificent frigate birds flying above our heads. From the cliffs we saw several schools of yellow-tailed mullets and king angel fish. At the end of the morning we left this island and navigated to Santa Fé Island. Read More>

Nov 26, 2015 National Geographic Islander in Galápagos

At Sea, Heading for Easter Island

With the Pitcairn Group in our wake we have set out across the wide stretch of the Pacific that lies between Ducie Atoll and Easter Island. Once again the greatest ocean in the world surrounds us and we are the center of our own world, isolated and alone, yet never disconnected from all that lies over our horizons. There are so many ways to spend our time as we near the end of our voyage through remote southeastern Polynesia the day has raced by and some plans have had to be put off—maybe tomorrow. Read More>

Nov 26, 2015 National Geographic Orion in Pacific Islands & Australia

Cerro Dragon & Daphne Major Islet

This day in our expedition around this magical archipelago found us anchored in front of Cerro Dragon. Located in the northwestern side of Santa Cruz Island, Cerro Dragon, Spanish for Dragon’s Hill, is famous for the healthy population of Galápagos land iguanas that live there. After breakfast, early in the morning, avoiding the heat of the day, we went for a hike looking for these so-called “dragon-like” iguanas. Read More>

Nov 25, 2015 National Geographic Endeavour in Galápagos

Lemaire Channel, Booth Island, & The Penola Strait

With great anticipation many of us woke up early, as today was the day we entered the Lemaire Channel, one of the most scenic areas in all of Antarctica. To the chart room we clamored ready to fill our coffee cups and behold a spectacle that would leave us all in awe. As we gazed out the windows our eyes opened to sight of something we had not even thought would greet us, snow! As hearts sunk, a gentle voice over the PA confirmed our worst fears—no visibility. But wait, we are an expedition and no mere snowstorm can stay us from our chosen adventure. We pushed ahead and continue to our next destination for the morning, Booth Island. At Booth Island, as at many of our landings, we separated into two groups. Read More>

Nov 25, 2015 National Geographic Explorer in Antarctica

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Please note: Daily Expedition Reports (DER’s) are posted Monday-Friday only, during normal business hours.

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Daily Expedition Report Information

Please note: All Daily Expedition Reports (DER's) are posted Monday-Friday, during normal business hours.